Good Fast Food Marketing Aimed At Children Essay Example

Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Family, Children, Food, Study, Education, Advertising, Literature, Media

Pages: 3

Words: 825

Published: 2020/12/05

The article, How Television Fast Food Marketing Aimed at Children Compares with Adult Advertisements by Bernhardt et al. offer insightful information on advertising strategies. The authors, through this article, to identify whether regulations governing advertisements for children meals were indeed implementing self-regulatory pledges. Self-regulation is a major issue particularly in the light of ethics surrounding the corporates that are keen on selling and appealing to their target markets via the media platform.
The study by the pundits is integral in the modern day context due to the emergence of various problems affecting children. Obesity, for instance, is one of the major issues that have been observed particularly in developed nations due to unregulated advertisement of unhealthy food. Currently, global companies have a profound impact on public health through the amount of resources that they invest in product promotion. The article validates these facts by pointing out that in 2006 United States Quick Service Restaurants “reported to the Federal Trade Commission that they spent $161 million marketing to 2-11-year-olds”. Bernhardt et al. further note that much of this advertisement is via television at 56% of the total money spent and 46 % on cross-promotions. The cross-promotions, in this instance, tie meals to movies, animated characters and television shows.
The pundits further link this aggressive advertising to the alteration of food choices and eating behaviors. With the association of food tastes to certain shows and animated characters, a child’s preferences are altered ultimately. It is also safe to cite that this study is also part of a greater public awareness program that has seen various cities pass decrees regarding control of consumption of fast foods and beverages. In New York, there was sugary drinks portion cup decree that was aimed restricting the volume of soda servings in fast food restaurants. This was part of the local administration efforts in managing the unhealthy eating habits that had manifested in the New York populace. Despite the opposition to this rule, much of the public health conscious individuals and organizations perceived as a noble move aimed at protecting the city’s children from unhealthy feeding habits.
Self-regulation in the light of the facts above is prudent. The authors note that Better Business Bureau is one of the organizations tasked with this self-regulation role in advertisements. The BBB has been integral in the management of the Children Advertising Review Unit. The unit has not only established guidelines regarding advertisement of children food products but also the implementation of these guidelines. The implementation part of this unit is the main objective of this research article. The survey and statistical analysis of the top 25 QSR restaurant chains in America and their advertisements are what constitute the findings of this study. By contrasting these advertisements to those of adults, the authors managed to ascertain there was adherence to the CARU guidelines that “mandated focus on food rather than premiums and tie-ins, in children’s QSR advertising”.
This study offers concrete data due to the size of the statistical sample used. With a focus on 25 corporates, the authors are bound stumble upon a much factual conclusion as compared to a small sample. By further drawing this pertinent data from a reliable source, Quick Service Magazine, the authors were able to use proper evidence that validates their study. The standardization of all the advertisements into 15 seconds also was integral in enhancing the uniformity and coherence of the analysis. The establishment of coding rules was important in associating words and phrases used in the advertisements to variables of interest in the study. These variables were mainly based on food itself (freshly baked, spicy, 100% pure beef), price (value, dollar) or portion size (big, double). As for the statistical analysis, chi-square test as well as the t-tests was integral in working out the statistical data.
The article, however, has its pros and cons. The use of a large sample size is a good element in that it makes it even more reliable as a scholarly article. The comparison between the adult and children advertisements was also key in establishing whether indeed companies were adhering to the ethics behind advertisement. The findings based on this comparison can be of much use to various governmental and non-governmental organizations focused on public health and children welfare. The shortcomings of this study surface with the time-span used. The drawing of a year’s data from advertising agencies does not provide room for analytical assessment of trends within the QSR domain. The article further fails to offer critical recommendations that may help the necessary parties and target audience in managing the unethical advertising procedures.
In conclusion, Bernhardt et al. examined the children advertisements by various US QSR’s between the years 2009-2010. The article had the core intention of establishing whether fast-food companies in the US were keen on self-regulatory promises that they were party to during the said period. The article, ultimately, supports the common notion by many regarding the state of public health in America with particular regard to unhealthy eating patterns by children. The study also had its fair share of weaknesses and strengths. The strengths being the sample size, data source and use of comparison. The weaknesses surfaced on the time-span of the study and lack of critical recommendations.

Works Cited

Bernhadt, A. M., C. Wilking, A. M. Adachi, E. Bergamini, and J. Marjinissen. "How Television Fast Food Marketing Aimed at Children Compares with Adult Advertisements." Fast Food Television Advertising to Children 8.8 (2013): 1-7. Web.

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Good Fast Food Marketing Aimed At Children Essay Example. Free Essay Examples - Published Dec 05, 2020. Accessed June 25, 2022.

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