Monthly Archives: August 2018

Armpit Advertising

Do you ride the subway or other public transportation? Do you notice the ads in the cars, or do you tune out everyone and everything, particularly the stinky armpits of fellow travelers on crowded trains? Well, in what might possibly be the weirdest place ever for an advertisement, a Japanese company is charging clients roughly $90 per hour to place advertisements on armpits. Yes, you read this correctly – armpit advertising is now a thing.

Wakino Ad Company (“Waki” is the Japanese word for “armpit”) is placing the ads on the underarms of both female and male models for beauty company Liberta, whose product mix includes armpit creams. Wakino is also running a national armpit beauty contest to promote the new areas of advertisements.

While the armpit ads might seem strange, people have long used spaces on their vehicles and bodies to promote products. There have been cases where advertisements have been placed on bald heads, faces, thighs, and other body areas. For armpit ads, the sponsors could be for hair removal, dermatology, lotions, creams, and who know what else.

Go ahead and raise your arm in public – you could get paid.

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Poll students: Who takes public transportation? What ads do they notice?
  2. Discuss the various promotional tactics that can be used for marketing a product.
  3. Have students come up with tactics and list all the tactics on the white board (ex: billboards, print, direct mail, etc.).
  4. Now, introduce the armpit advertisements: https://youtu.be/P54A9L-VyFg
  5. Divide the students into teams. Have each team list what products could be advertised in armpits?
  6. What other body locations could host ads? What products or services would they feature?

Source: Ad Week, CNN, other news sources

 

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A Lesson on the ‘Pink Tax’ from Burger King

Price discrimination is illegal, but nonetheless it exists. Previous articles on this blog have discussed the ‘Pink Tax’ that women encounter when buying products that are the same (or nearly identical) to those bought by their male counterparts. Oftentimes, the only difference in the products is simply the color – using pink to attract female buyers.

Research confirms this pricing discrepancy. According to a study done by New York City in 2015, girl’s clothes cost 4% more than boy’s clothes, women pay 7% more than men for accessories such as bags and watches, 8% more than men for clothing, and 13% more than men for personal care products. In total, price differences cost women $1,351 per year more than men. (And yet, women on average are paid only 79% of the wage paid to men.)

To highlight the topic, Burger King took a creative approach and released a 60-second video that shows just how crazy it is to ask women to pay more for a product that is packaged in pink. In the spot, pink-boxed Chicken Fries are sold for $3.09, while regular packaged Chicken Fries are only $1.69. Unsuspecting female customers have some great reactions!

What other examples of the ‘Pink Tax” can you uncover?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Poll students: What is their experience with price discrimination between males and females? Why do they think there is a difference in prices?
  2. Show the Burger King video: https://youtu.be/7rtHmSfYDbs
  3. Vox also has a brief overview of the pink tax: https://www.vox.com/2018/3/30/17179350/pink-tax-beauty-products-gender-inequality-women
  4. Divide students into team. Have each team research products that are similar for men and women (such as clothes, health and beauty products, sports, etc.).
  5. List the products and prices on the white board.
  6. What could be done to correct the price discrimination?
  7. Note: The New York City study report is available at: http://www1.nyc.gov/assets/dca/downloads/pdf/partners/Study-of-Gender-Pricing-in-NYC.pdf

Source: Ad Week; New York City Consumer Affairs

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Mealtime Bribery

It can be tough to get kids to eat their vegetables. (College students might not have this problem, but parents certainly do.) Let’s face it. Most kids would rather have candy, or soda, or French fries, or anything other than eat parent-endorsed healthy foods. What’s a parent to do?

One solution is of course an all-out battle with consequences for not eating healthy. But another solution could be to use bribery! In other words, “If you eat your vegetables, you get a treat.” And maybe that treat could be Ore Ida’s French fries…

And, since not all parents are comfortable with the idea of bribery to encourage good behavior, Ore Ida wisely renamed the practice as ‘Potato Pay’. It’s pretty simple. Set an exchange rate (aka bribe) for each healthy food that kids eat. Broccoli could be worth two fries, carrots equal one fry, and Brussel sprouts are worth five fries! The exchange rate can even vary depending on the child and vegetable. Don’t struggle – pay with French fries.

What’s the exchange rate in your house?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Poll students: Were they picky eaters? Do they have young cousins or siblings who always present a challenge at meal times? How did their families handle this?
  2. Show the potato pay video: https://youtu.be/x8ZUvU_SW-I
  3. Web site: http://www.trypotatopay.com/
  4. Suggested mealtime bribery chart: http://www.trypotatopay.com/MealtimeBriberyChart.pdf
  5. Have students analyze how Ore Ida created a full campaign.
  6. Divide students into groups. Challenge each group to identify a problem faces by parents at meal time.
  7. What is a creative solution that a food company could use to market its products to solve the problem?

Source: Griner, D. (13 July 2018). Kids won’t eat veggies? Bribe them shamelessly with Ore-Ida’s ‘Potato Pay’.

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