Write a 7 page essay on Mass Media and Its Influence on Public Opinion.
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This project analyzes how mass media manages to both observe and influence public opinion as it relates to consumer-based and politically-based advertising. Mass Media Industry Social changes occurring across the world have radically changed how information sources are utilized for learning, entertainment, and knowledge-sharing. Social-based technologies, such as MySpace, YouTube and Facebook are now considered to be moving into the social mainstream, thus providing an excellent opportunity for opinion leaders to spread their personalized messages. “Wherever people are online, they are actively engaged in a wide variety of social media platforms, from blogs to social networking to video sharing” (Smith, 2009, p.559). Social media over the Internet is a significant revolution from traditional information sources such as newspaper and television as it relates to lifestyle and allows for evolution of thought from a variety of demographics. This is why this form of media is becoming more and more valuable to opinion leaders as it maintains the ability to reach a wide variety of consumers to present different advertising schemes and concepts. The content of messages now have changed with the use of mass media when considering social media outlets as it no longer has to be targeted to just one specific demographic, such as newspapers like the Wall Street Journal which is targeted to those who invest in stocks and bonds. It can be directed toward a global community, as a means to influence and persuade others to accept a particular advertising message. The electronic format of this type of media also allows for rapid changing of the message by the opinion leaders as a means to shift delivery in the event of changing social needs or beliefs across the world. In order to explore the issue more effectively, one should take into consideration the concepts of advertising in order to better understand the observational methods of those delivering the advertising content over mass media sources and how it manages to influence opinion of the community. Marketers have a strategy to ensure competitiveness of their products and also to maintain a competitive edge over other businesses that sell similar products or concepts and services. This strategy is referred to as positioning, which is “owning a place in the mind of a consumer. By understanding how a mind works, marketers can use it to their advantage and successfully drive demand for their products” (Trout, 2008, p.2). Marketers understand that there must be some element about their products or advertising strategy that is unique to all other competition and they rely on the ability to persuade consumers to accept and adopt their intended messaging. They do this by relating information to the individual’s lifestyle and then select a particular, very biased message that will be delivered to their specific target group. Now that the fundamentals of advertising messaging have been understand as it relates to changing the mind-set of buyers, it can be explored how observation and influence occur as a product of this advertising strategy. In earlier years, marketers used traditional forms of mass media to deliver a singular, streamlined message that was not easily transformed or updated as it was generally in print.
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