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Influence of the Entertainment Industry on the Audience

Updated on January 29, 2020
Maryam Habib profile image

I'm doing my Bachelors in Peace And Conflict Studies- IR from National Defence University ISB

Abstract

Communication has been used as a means of passing messages since ancient times. As the world began to change, so did the modes of communication. Gradually, Communication was not just limited to passing verbal day to day conversations, rather it began to seep into soft power; a notion which influenced people on a long term basis. The type of communication used in this process is known as Strategic communication. This paper will describe strategic communication through one of the most influential and captivating entity known as the entertainment industry while providing an afterthought whether the careful strategies used to grasp the audience have been successful to an extent or not. It will also determine the whether the future seems bleak or bright.

Introduction

Communication has always been a mode of formulating thoughts into words. Communication with different people in different setting requires a different etiquette. For this purpose, many theorists and researchers have proposed different skills to enhance communication. Hallahan et al. (2007) defined strategic communication “in its broadest sense as communicating purposefully to advance the organization’s mission". It means that strategic communication enables different organizations to spread their message through different style and purpose.

On the surface level, it may seem harmless to anyone, but on a deeper level it unconsciously settles into the mind of the audience. Strategic communication also involves impression management which is seen to be one of the major factors that help promote an organizations message. Its two main factors include: the presence of media and the targeted audience.

A Blooming Victory or A Crushing Defeat

In the present time, the media had been one of the main influential entity through which any political figure, organization or brand pass their slogan. In this case the strategies that each representative use is carefully planned. No brand or organization promotes their work haphazardly. For example, a soccer player whose interest lies in sports will not be shown a discount on makeup. Similarly, a college student will be shown a variety of key books that would preferably be helpful in their exams.

“The visual aspects of a corporation's marketing materials are receiving increasing attention in marketing research”

(Childers and Jass 2002).

As a result of the major changes brought by globalization, many people have stopped using force and started using soft power to promote their culture, language etc. to captivate the people from other countries into buying their products and trying to look and feel the way their natives do. In doing so, it has brought different impacts, both positive and negative. The main industry that is fashion industry will be observed and analyzed to determine how exactly did they crept into the rapidly changing world.

Fashion industry

Fashion generally can be described as something popular or the manner of styling oneself according to the latest trend which might include clothing, hairstyling, wearing accessories and the like. Simply, it can be described as a way of expressing oneself. According to Crane (2000) clothes are the key factor which can make or destroy one’s personality. Today fashion has become an important part of our lives as well as a battle ground. It is always in a state of flux, hence it is something that we with deal with on day-to- day basis. Everybody wants to be the epitome of perfection. Those who succeed in achieving this are given high praise, whereas the people who fail to do so, due to whatever reason are looked down upon and are constantly criticized at every turning point. According to Luciana Zegheanu, fashion causes changes in social, economic and political landscapes. Like all other phenomena, fashion influences society both positively and adversely.

On the positive side, the growing interest in fashion has led to the evolution of fashion industry. This in turn has produced many opportunities for the new designs and works as well asthe discovery of the news talents with innovative ideas. The growing interest and competition in fashion industry continuously inspires people to be creative and to be different. Freedom of expression is another positive aspect of fashion. Fashion can be one of the best ways to express yourself. Fashion inspires people to represent themselves using their unique and individual fashion choices. Choosing the style which suits you the best can make you look presentable and can even help you win the admiration of others. For most of the people fashion represent their mood, attitude and even feelings.

Author Rima Hameed states that,

“Unlike earlier times, now the teenagers do not go out with their parents on weekends, rather they plan their outings with their friends".

What makes it best is the fact that a person is free to choose their style and to be whoever he or she wants to be. Fashion is like a universal language which can easily be understood by people all around the world. Hence, the diversity in the world of fashion leaves a very little or no space for intolerance or prejudice.

Through a different lens, it can be seen how fashion also influences the society negatively. For instance, it acts as a distraction for the people, especially youth. Students who become overly obsessed with fashion start neglecting their education as well as their family. For most of them the prime zones for outings have now become malls because they can do a lot of shopping there in addition to having fun.” Rather than acquiring knowledge or indulging themselves in productive activities they focus on how to be trendier and fashionable. In a way, the fashion shows that are held display a limit to how a person should look; slim waist, fair skin, long hair etc. The term ‘inner beauty’ has been reduced to nothing. People claim that inner beauty is what matters the most, yet when they step into the society, they start teasing, nagging and criticizing others for their body weight or their lack of clear and fair skin etc. In some cases, they are judged for the clothes that they wear. In other words, it can be said that the youth of today is obsessed with the outer hollow exterior which only pleases others for a day or two. As a result, they have become the victims of anxiety, eating disorder and/or depression. Similarly, it has also caused people to become more self-conscious and have low self-esteem when they cannot afford expensive fashion clothing.

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