Why are we all suckers for labels and branding?

I was watching a TV show with my wife the other day, which got me thinking. On the show, the two presenters would go to the kitchen of a family and change all their food and groceries for a week, to encourage them to eat well for less. This would mean getting rid of a lot of branded goods and replacing them with cheaper and healthier alternatives. All the items they replaced, they gave to the family covered in white labels, so the family had no idea what brand they were eating. Then at the end of the week the presenters came back to see what the family liked and didn’t like, to see if they could save them money on their weekly shop and get them eating healthier.

Below is a link to details about the programme in question:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0520lz9

Now it doesn’t take a genius to work out that home brands and non branded products are cheaper than the heavily branded and marketed products, but what shocked me, was home much healthier some of the home brands and non branded products were. For a fraction of the price, many items were at least as healthier or in a lot of cases healthier.

Power

The power of brands, marketing and advertising means that no matter how much information, reporting and science there is out there about products, that sadly the brands will always be purchased in high volumes. In a world, which I think is information hungry, and with more information out there than ever before you wouldn’t think that brands would have the same power, but yet they still seem to have it. Even when we know that the reason we are attracted to brands is because of their packaging and marketing, we still choose to switch off the logical part of our brain and buy the brand.

As a world we need to be looking at the back of packets & boxes and not the front! One of the reasons why companies spend so much on advertising and branding is so that you don’t look at the back first! If supermarkets displayed items on their shelves back to front I am sure our buying habits would change a lot. As the important information is on the back, I think it is a case of out of sight, out of mind for many of us, which is not the best philosophy to have, when so much of our health is dictated by what we eat.

Branding is everywhere

I think we need to not buy in to the packaging and exterior of something and if we did this across all areas of our lives, I think we would be better off. Branding is everywhere now, from companies to individuals. It’s not just big companies and celebrities that market themselves now, it’s your local business and your regular day folk like you and I that are doing it too.

We need to be a world that looks deeper at a persons or organisations quality and not just what people are saying about them. Don’t be fooled in to believing what other people want you to believe. Take the time to search for the truth and not opinions. Find out what matters to you and make sure you are getting what you want or need from the people and companies around you.

Selling happens everyday

Everyday someone is selling something to you. You might not know it’s happening, you might not be buying anything but someone will be trying to influence the way you think about something. Some people are trying to consciously change your thoughts and opinions, whilst others are doing it to you without even knowing that they are. Lets try to be aware of it and let’s try to make sure we make the best decisions that we can, in all aspects of our lives.

The goal of businesses is to make as much money as possible, the goal of people who brand themselves is to get good jobs, good contacts and good money. Your goal should be to make the best decisions you can, based on the best information and experience you can find.

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