Taking into consideration the growing impact of advertising, it is necessary to understand reasons why advertising becomes so influential in the modern society. In this respect, mass media play a crucial role along with companies that use advertising to reach their target customer group and they use all possible means and techniques including means and techniques that arguable from the ethical point of view. Speaking about the role of mass media in regard to the increasing impact of advertising, some specialists (Moy, et al., 1999) lay emphasis on the fact that it is due to mass media advertising actually becomes a tool of the mind control. In actuality, mass media define, to a significant extent, the effectiveness of advertising and its impact on the target audience.
The effectiveness of the advertisement can be assessed in different ways. On the one hand, it is possible to use quantitative methods and assess the cost effectiveness of advertisement. On the other hand, it is possible to analyze the quality of the advertisement and its qualitative effectiveness. In this respect, it is necessary to dwell upon the impact of the advertisement on customers, which are the target group of any advertisement. At the same time, it is important to take into consideration the impact of mass media on customers because it is by means of mass media goods and services as well as brands of companies are advertised and promoted. At this point, it should be said that today advertising primarily aims at the consistent increase of consumption, which is the ultimate goal of any advertising campaign. In such a context, the critical theory of advertising reveals the essence of advertising and its impact on customers. According to this theory advertising is a means of reproducing the existing society, while the modern society is the consumerist society. Hence, advertising is focused on the stimulation of consumerism and customers become mere objects which advertisers attempt to convince to buy products or services. Today, advertisers use the full potential of mass media to meet their goal.
First of all, it should be said that the modern mass media are closely intertwined with advertising industry because it is due to advertising modern mass media can obtain a considerable share of their annual revenues. Moreover, today, the normal development of mass media is hardly possible without revenues mass media obtain from advertising. As a result, mass media are interested in advertising as much as advertisers and companies advertising their products and services are interested in mass media.
On the one hand, advertisers and companies advertising their products and services need media to reach the target customer group. For this purpose they use specific media which, in their turn, aim at a particular customer group. For instance, electronic media are mainly oriented on younger generation since young people use electronic media, especially Internet more extensively than older generation.
Instead, elderly people often prefer print media, which they get accustomed to and they are unwilling to use en mass Internet and new mass media, which elderly people are not accustomed to use (Blanchard, K. & Bowles, 1993). The use of new media, such as Internet, implies the necessity of learning how to use them that elderly people are not always willing to do, viewing conventional media as more reliable than new ones. In such a way, by means of various media, companies can easily reach the mass audience and, therefore, can promote its products and services as well as brands to customers.
On the other hand, mass media need advertisers which bring them a considerable part of their revenues. In such a situation, mass media are dependent in a way on advertisers because they can increase their revenues. At the same time, the popularity of mass media in the audience is an essential condition of a higher revenues from advertising because the larger the audience is the more expansive advertising becomes. Therefore, mass media can earn more, while companies advertising their products and services will spend more on advertising, though the return on such advertising is higher due to the large audience of the mass media.
In such a situation, the question arises: whether mass media and advertising are influential enough to make people buying products or services advertised in mass media. On answering this question, it is important to lay emphasis on the fact that modern mass media has increased substantially their impact on the audience. Today, the development of new technologies, especially in the field of telecommunications, made mass media widely spread. In fact, it is only in the second half of the 20th century and especially in the 21st century media became oriented on the large masses of people. The audience of modern mass media may comprise millions of people worldwide, while some events, such as the Olympic Games, which are broadcasted by means of television, can have the audience which reaches over 1,5 billion people or even more. As a result, many companies, especially those operating in the field of sport goods production, attempt to use such special events and mass media to promote their brands as well as their products and services. In recent years, large companies become more and more oriented on the advertising of their brands rather than on the advertising of some particular products or services. In such a context, it is obvious that the large audience of mass media can make the advertising highly effective.