Sweets such as Starburst ‘Fruits’, 3 Musketeers and Skittles are advertised along the bottom of ‘educational’ posters.
School lunch menus have advertisements on them for movies and toys.
Some schools sell businesses the right to public-address announcements at sports events.
Schools also receive free product samples and discount coupons.
In the UK more than a million school children from the age of 5 up, receive sample bags from First Impressions Marketing (FiM) that include products from Best Foods, Johnson & Johnson, Sara Lee, Procter & Gamble, Kellogg, Campbell, Glaxo SmithKline and others. FiM claims that it can target branded messages to children by age, gender and television region and that because the sample bags are given out by teachers the products in them have “added credibility”.
In Canada many school boards don’t allow advertising in their schools. For this reason school video dance parties have become a popular “marketing vehicles” because they allow brands “to reach the targeted and captive audience that exists behind high school walls”. Some 500,000 Canadian teenage school students attend these parties each year.
Posters advertising the dances “double as billboards for sponsoring brands”. At the dance “video jockeys run contests for advertisers, allowing brands to interact with their audience in a fun and memorable way”. For example L’Oreal products have been promoted through on-stage hair styling contests. Sony products have been promoted by “allowing youth to sample the newest games in an environment that is familiar and emotionally inviting”. After the dance, when students visit a website to see photos of the party, there is another opportunity to advertise to them.
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