Marketing is the key to the success of any product in the market because of the competition the product gets. To effectively target the required customers need to be made aware of the new product. Customers’ information on diet and personal health has played a key role in influencing customer buying patterns. But the case is quite different with young children who are usually interested with the attractiveness of the packaging compared the nutritional value of that particular product. Such outward judging of what to take on the part of the children affect the willingness of mothers to provide a healthy diet to their children. The nature of packaging influences on food shopping with the American children buying patterns increasing by 54% since 1997. This has been attributed to the purchasing influence of the kids whereby they decide on what foods and drinks to take.
The use of appealing colors and flavors have been very influential in determine what kids are to pick from the shelf and manufacturers have capitalized on highly appealing packaging colors that capture the kids attention thus choosing on the product regardless of its quality.
Manufactures are usually aware that the right colors are more appealing to a kid and create more satisfaction compared to the quality of the product itself. However, it is a requirement that the healthy aspect of the product needs be signaled on the pack to assure mothers the kid will eat the product and as well buy it in the first place without any guilt feeling.
Healthy food products have to be fun and attractive so as to be appealing to kids and show mothers their healthy aspect. The king of packaging usually referred to as the “silent salesman”, is really a powerful way to communicate with kids and then they do the rest!
Although kids have the power to influence on the buying characteristics and patterns of their mothers, the mothers should not show the kids that they can always buy what the kids ask for and that their demands should not just be met always. This will help the kids to be rational in their thinking and choose wisely on what to eat not just because of its nice attractive packaging or colors but because whatever they eat determines their health. Mothers should ensure that junk foods are eliminated from a kid’s diet because of their impact to the health of the kid in the long run and although their packaging is always crazy the more a kid takes o them the more they continue asking for more.
The differences, advantages and disadvantages
Although the two articles are addressing the same issue on marketing foods for kids, one of the articles is more interested in ways of provoking kids to choose on certain products on the shelf and the market place depending on their packaging nature. Manufactures are noted to have employing all sorts of tactics to entice kids to pick on their products. Such manufactures believe that kids are inexperienced and unsophisticated and need to be attracted by certain factors to them to make a decision on what to buy, but this is not the case and they have the experience to choose on what they really need depending on the advertisement they see.
The other article on “Packaging and Mothers Purchase Decisions” explains the association between what kids go for and what their mothers or those buying regard good for them. The packaging and other enticing factors on the product do not really provoke the buyers to choose on that particular product but it is the healthy aspect of the product which the mother will be more concerned with unlike the child whose main interest is the appealing colour scheme on the package. But the paper still supports the fact that kids have a greater influence on their mother’s choice of what they are buying for them.
According to the article on “Packaging and Mothers Purchase Decisions”, the nature of diet kids take increasingly affects their adult health and proper awareness must be put in place on individuals and families to pay attention to diet and more so on what their kids eat. However, young children are never attracted to healthy food products per se. It is for this reason that mothers should take total control on what their offspring’s consume and ensure a healthy eating bias into their children’s food. The article is very much interested on controlled eating unlike on the other article on “marketing food to kids: Using fun to sell” whose main emphasis is on ways of provoking the kid to keep on buying more and more of certain products depending on how the products appear on the shelf even without the mothers approval on the quality of the product but on the colours the manufacture as used to entice and hook kids to their product. The food manufactures have capitalized on technology improvements to design fun packaging, create new shapes and invent new flavours to give their products child-appeal and ensure that the kid becomes loyal to their brand.
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The advantage of the article on “Packaging and Mothers Purchase Decisions” is that mothers and other individuals concerned with the purchase of kids food have been sensitized on the demands which kids lay as they demand for certain products even without noting the products health quality. However, despite the fact that mothers admit the kids influence on them, they do not give in for products which are not considered healthy but which their kids are requesting for only because of their attractive packaging, such influence of children ion their parents is called “reverse socialization”, and which is the process by which kids acquire skills, knowledge and attitudes relevant to their functioning in the marketplace as they become older and more independence. This happens at the ages between 5 and 9 years of age, when advertising seems to influence kids strongly. The article encourages wise eating which is influenced by the mother and impacts the same to kids as they grow up making them make correct choice of what to eat as they grow and became more independent. Kids learn through imitation and when the mother makes wise choice on what the kid is eating, they as well carry on with the same choice thus determining their health.
The disadvantage of the article “Packaging and Mothers Purchase Decisions” is that mothers can be very selective on certain products thus creating an impression that a certain product is better than another yet they might have almost similar health value. Certain products may lack “nice-looking” packaging that is influential to the children but the mother will insist on buying such a product and this creates discontent on the kid who might end up refusing to accept them since it was not their approval. As the child grows and becomes more independent later in their life chances are that they will be attracted towards consuming the same products their mother denied them from taking when they were kids and this will impact negatively to their health.
Kids should thus be educated on why their mother chooses on a certain product as compared to another that may appears more appealing to them depending on the manufactures colour choice and this gives them a better understanding on how to determine what is good for their health as they grow up and attain more personal independence. This will reduce the current health problems affecting many kids such as obesity and hypertension and other health related complications being experienced currently due to over consuming of junk food which appear very appealing on the shelves thus attracting very many kids towards them.
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The advantage on the article “marketing foods for kids: Using fun to sell” is that kinds have been provided with a wide variety of products to choose from although the different products might be providing the same kind of nutritional value to the kids. Manufacturers on their part have responded on the kids demands by developing a wide range of new prototype products. Some kids have suggested that if they could use the ketchup to draw on food and this opened a whole new and unforeseen opportunity. The kids voted on a variety of colours and the companies explored this opportunity. The wide available choice of product on the market has ensured that the companies embrace the latest technological technology so as to remain in business.
Using fun to sell by manufactures has created fun and interest as they try to meet children’s excitement, thrills, experiences and surprises; a good example of such is the development of bubble gums, which became the world’s biggest selling sweet.
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The disadvantages associated with “marketing foods for kids: Using fun to sell” is that manufacturers are more interested with production and vigorous advertisement of their products so that they may attract many consumers without telling the concerned kids and other consumers about the negative effects of their products. Such products have bright packing both on the graphic and text so as to gain the acceptance of products by the kids. Kids are appealed by gaudy colours, glitz, metallic foils, holographs and graffiti-like packing.
The driving force in children is that they are driven by fun and instant gratification and it is this aspect which most manufacturing companies have capitalised on so as to capture on their products. In my opinion, most of these companies are out to make profits and have no personal touch on the impacts their products cause on their potential customers.
The fact that kids have a high buying power has made it possible for them to get products they crave for over the counter with lots of easy and this has led to a serious health problem because many kids have uncontrolled eating habits. These habits have led to complications such as hypertension, obesity and other similar diseases.
In conclusion, Consumers have become increasingly aware of the relationship between what they eat and their health and the trend is likely to continue thus influencing consumers’ buying patterns. Poor eating habits during the early days of a child affect adult health. It is for that reason that individuals and families must to pay great attention to their diet. In most cases, it is unfortunate that young children are attracted to unhealthy food products. And for this reason mothers and guardians should care about what their offspring consume. They should be willing to introduce a healthy eating bias into their children’s food. However, the increasing influence of children when purchasing food has interfered with efforts to maintain and ensure good decision making for food purchases.
The use of improved technology by manufactures to improve on fun packaging with newly created shapes and invent new flavours that give the products a child-appeal. Most of these products are not always healthy or not perceived as such by mothers.
In my opinion, manufactures should be forced by the law to tell the consumers the entire negative impacts they may experience by taking their product and this will make sure that all consumers make informed choices for whatever they produce.