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Showing 1-3 of 3 reviews(5 star). Show all reviews
on October 31, 2011
If you haven't read "Buy-ology" go read it first, then Brandwashed will blow your mind. Martin packs this book full of research into how companies are tricking us into buying. It starts when were young, infants are marketed to, just in ways you've never realized. Whether it's fear that drives us or sexual aspirations, Brandwashed uncovers what we really think about in the most peculiar situations that nudge us to buy.
If you're at all interested in the marketing industry you will absolutely love this book. Other topics Mr. Lindstrom covers:
Why we get addicted to lipchap
The hidden power of; Nostalgia marketing, Celebrity (famous people) marketing, and marketing 'hope'.
What credit card companies know about us.
And finished off with an actual social experiment which proves the effectiveness of the most powerful form of marketing, "word-of-mouth".

I think the best marketing book of 2011, I'll be referencing this one again and again.

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Others have shared their opinions of this book and their opinions certainly cover a wide spectrum. Some praise or criticize Martin Lindstrom's writing stile, others praise or criticize his premises and conclusions, and still other praise or criticize both. I'm going to pass on the writing style and focus on what I consider to be among his most important points.

Marketers face much greater challenges today than ever before in terms of attracting and then sustaining the attention of consumers who find themselves buried by "blizzards" of information conveyed by thousands of daily messages that create "clutter." Lindstrom explains how marketers are responding to those challenges.

First, they create or increase demand for what they offer with implicit rather than explicit tactics. Vance Packard wrote about "the hidden persuaders" in a book bearing that title, first published in 1957. In Brandwashed, Lindstrom examines what could be characterized as "the stealth persuaders." For example, we learn that shoppers in American department stores who are exposed to Muzak with a slow tempo shop 18% longer and purchase 17% more than do those who shop in silence. However, in fast food restaurants, Muzak with much faster beats is played "to increase the rate at which a person chews."

Marketers are also making highly effective use of the latest technologies, notably functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), to identify what consumers really want even if they don't as yet know it. Electronic measurement of the brain (especially the functions of the subconscious mind) suggests reveals what does and doesn't attract and retain attention, what does and doesn't appeal initially, what does and doesn't sustain appeal over time, etc. According to Lindstrom, this is the context within which to understand the "tricks companies use to manipulate our minds and persuade us to buy."

Here are the titles and subtitles of the book's first four (of nine) chapters:

1 Buy Buy Baby: When companies start marketing to us in the womb
2. Peddling Panic and Paranoia: Why fear sells
3. I Can't Quit You: Brand addicts, shopaholics, and why we can't live without our smart phones
4. Buy It, Get Laid: The new face of sex (and the sexes) in advertising

It is by no means a stretch of the imagination to consider the implications and potential impact of all this with regard to federal, state, and local elections that involve both selection of public officials and acceptance or rejection of bond issues.

Whatever Lindstrom's inadequacies may be as a prose stylist (FYI, I think he communicates very well), he has made a significant contribution to our understanding of how much more difficult it is to influence not only the purchase-decision process but indeed [begin italics] any [end italics] any process by which opinions are formed, decisions are made, information is shared, etc.
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on September 22, 2011
In his new book, 'Brandwashed: Tricks Companies Use to Manipulate Our Minds and Persuade Us to Buy,' Martin Lindstrom reveals many of the tricks that are used by marketers to manipulate us into purchasing their products.

Using tools like loyalty cards, history sniffing (tracking websites you have visited in the past) and monitoring credit cards transactions, marketers have more information about their current and potential consumers than ever. Each time that you 'like' a Facebook page or do a search on yahoo!, Bing, or Google you are giving these marketers even more information to use against you.

Some of the most shocking practices used currently by marketers are those that are applied to influence children. Marketers know that 75% of all impulse purchases can be traced to a nagging child so they prey on this behavior. Supermarkets change the location of goods in their stores so parents have to spend more time looking for items.

It was interesting to learn just how brand conscious children have become. According to Lindstrom, the average American three-year-old can recognise 100 brands. When the typical child is given the choice between plain carrots and 'McDonald's carrots,' the child will overwhelmingly choose the branded carrots.

The list goes on and on, and this book has already changed the way I think about a lot of the things I used to take for granted. Instead of using my debit and credit cards to pay for transactions I have found myself going to the ATM and paying cash. I have unsubscribed to a lot of the 'loyalty' sites that I once belonged and am not as concerned with buying the 'branded' good at the store as I was in the past. There are a lot of generics out there that are just as good, if not better than the name brand. I have also noticed that I have a bit more money in my bank account than I typically do at the end of the week!
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