Often I ask, why is it that we rarely see advertisements upon mainstream media sources, such as TV or radio for Louis Vuitton, Tiffany and Co or from the luxury automotive industry, such as Porsche. How is it that companies which have attained such exclusivity do not engage in the production and distribution of advertisements for potential consumers?
The conclusion that I have come to, is that I have been looking in the wrong places.
Converging media practices has altered many facets of life, including the advertising industry regarding the production, distribution and consumption of product. Perhaps within 2015, costly and dated methods of advertising no longer fulfils companies needs for distributing product. Alternatively the individual consumer and their representation of product has become the ultimate commodity. Through the development and strengthening of rapport, a shift of hierarchal power has allowed the consumer to become the advertisement mechanism. Adopting this notion, the advertisement itself is the exclusivity of a monogram or the adored and protected ‘Tiffany Blue’ of packaging, exhibited through the consumers pride of attaining such exclusivity and publishing their support.
The changing hierarchal status of media and it’s advertising has been shaped by converging practices. This process has allowed the everyday individual emerge as a new source of power and wealth. Product engagement and momentum has ensured companies are still maintaining audience reach through social media. Notably, changes within legal parameters of Instagram has led companies to become heavily engaged in competitions and product campaigns. Upholding the value of this practice, is the commodification of an image. This can occur, as Instagram has altered their legal policy, allowing for images shared on their database to no longer have exclusive rights to the photographer. Therefore, by publicly posting an image to the domain, the company is able to utilise and/or sell the image for their own advertising needs, free of charge to the original image holder.
Companies leading the way within this practice includes Frank, Bondi Sands, House of Kdor, Lorna Jane and Victorias Secret. Frank, best known for it’s coffee scrubs and packaging laden with playful slogans, has revolutionised the Insta-scene. Young people semi-clothed smothered in the scrub displaying packaging, is seemingly the new ‘it’ thing to do. More poignantly, Bondi Sands fake tan published an image through their Instagram account highlighting the fact that they are shifting to a more individual approach regarding their advertising, thus they promote their customers taking before and after photos and tagging @bondisands within their image. Personally, I have also engaged heavily with these practices. As a typical young woman of this technological age, I have distributed images of products that I am proud of using or attaining, including cosmetics and accessories such as Yves Saint Laurent cosmetic, Tiffany and Co Jewels and even Moet champagne. Arguably, publishing images of my beloved breakfast foods is also a representation of the everyday person shifting into the drivers seat and leveraging companies.
Recently Ovi Hydration chose me as a potential investment regarding the advertisement of their beverages. In a very Coca Cola-esque move, they kindly printed my name and those of my elected significant others onto bottles and sent them to me free of charge. Although not explicitly stated, it would be expected that I would publish images of my bottles, considering one of the questions on attaining the products was how many Instagram followers I was sporting. I happily engaged with this practice considering the drinks are fabulous and I am willing to have my name aside such a product. This is a poignant reflection of how we are the new power-holders, shaping advertising within the age of converging media practices. The reach companies can attain through the endorsement of high profiled and everyday individuals such as the Sydney Fashion Blogger are unprecedented and of great value.
Not saying I’m the Sydney Fashion Blogger, but a gal can try.
Frank Body Instagram: https://instagram.com/frank_bod/
Bondi Sands Instagram: https://instagram.com/bondisands/
Article on the change of rights on Instagram: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/social-media/9780565/Facebook-terms-and-conditions-why-you-dont-own-your-online-life.html