Wednesday, November 16, 2011

How Marketing Ruined My Life

Have you ever taken a class that has simply ruined something very precious to you? I have! I have actually taken a series of classes for a marketing certificate offered at Northwestern University. Since I begun this marketing track, television has not been as fun to watch as it once was.
            It all began during fall quarter of my junior year. It was then that I began taking the Integrated Marketing Communications certificate courses. I began with Consumer Insight and Introduction to Integrated Marketing Communication. In both these classes we spent our class time watching commercials and then breaking them down to figure out who they were targeting and if they were successful. It all seemed fun during class, but what happened next is what ruined my life.
            Fast forward to Super Bowl Sunday. I am sitting around the TV with my friends. My home team is not playing and I do not bet on games so my main entertainment comes from the quality commercials during the break. As I sat there watching commercials, I found myself breaking down the commercials by segments and analyzing them. I was critiquing them to see if they were successful in reaching their target market. "Who was their target market? What is the product or service? Is it better than its competitors?" The commercials were no longer fun to watch. It had turned into homework. Since that day I have not been able to watch a commercial without thinking in my head, “Wow, what a great commercial” or “Well, that was a waste of their money, no one knows what their product does or whom it is for!”
            My sickness has gotten even worse. I now judge billboards and posters. Hell, I even critique the color scheme on a can of Coke. Marketing classes have ruined my life! Is it too much to ask to be able to watch a Heineken commercial and not think “Wow, that song is going to remind people of Heineken next time they hear it?” I urge you to heed my warning, do not take marketing classes unless you are ready to no longer be sold to blindly, to no longer simply watch aimlessly, and to no longer be able to enjoy good and bad commercials alike.  Marketing has ruined my life and I will never forget the information I learned!

William Gomez-Moller, Undergraduate, @williamgomezmol

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