The Effects of Advertising on Children’s Materialistic Orientations

7852 WordsJan 20, 201332 Pages
Running head: ADVERTISING AND CHILDREN’S MATERIALISTIC ORIENTATIONS 1 The Effects of Advertising on Children’s Materialistic Orientations: A Longitudinal Study ADVERTISING AND CHILDREN’S MATERIALISTIC ORIENTATIONS 2 Abstract Previous studies have suggested that advertising exposure affects materialistic orientations among youth. However, this causal effect has not been investigated among 8- to 11-year olds, who are in the midst of consumer development. Furthermore, the mechanisms underlying this relation have not been studied. In order to fill these lacunae, this study focused on the longitudinal relation between children’s advertising exposure and materialism. We investigated two possible mediators: advertised product…show more content…
As advertising usually portrays the message that material possessions bring fulfillment, happiness, and success, an increase in the perceived reality of advertising can cause an increase in general materialism (Chaplin & John, 2007; Goldberg, Gorn, Peracchio, & Bamossy, 2003). In sum, this study contributes to the existing literature on youth’s advertising exposure and materialism in three ways: (1) it is based on longitudinal rather than cross-sectional data, (2) it focuses on children from an age group (8- to 11-year olds) that until now has received little attention in materialism research, and (3) it deals with both direct and mediated effects of children’s advertising exposure on materialism. Direct Effect of Advertising Exposure on Materialism Several correlational studies have shown that children’s advertising exposure and materialism are positively related (Atkin, 1975a; Atkin, 1975b; Buijzen & Valkenburg, 2003b; Moschis & Churchill, 1978; Moschis & Moore, 1982; Schor, 2005; Ward & Wackman, 1971). Because of their use of cross-sectional data, though, most scholars can only theorize about the causal direction of the relation between children’s advertising exposure and materialism (Buijzen & Valkenburg, 2003a). On the one hand children’s advertising exposure is plausible to precede materialism, because it is advertising’s aim to evoke an increased need for products (Buijzen & Valkenburg, 2003a; 2003b). Up until now, two
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