Selling the Party Scene

Glamorous people, exotic locations, exclusive clubs, who wouldn’t want to be a part of the party scene? Haven’t we all wished for less responsibilities and more fun? It couldn’t hurt to have just one night out with friends – even if it means calling in sick to work the next day. But for some, one night out becomes a weekend away, then a constant desire to shirk their duties for more fun and more excitement. And that desire is precisely what advertisers work to create: a huge group of friends enjoying their favourite beer together at a sports bar while the home team wins the championship, beautiful celebrities drinking premium liquor at an exclusive VIP nightclub, a dozen lovely ladies whisking the bachelorette away for a luxurious weekend in Vegas… whatever the specifics, marketers are selling the party scene as an escape from our humdrum lives.

With workplace stress levels at an all-time high, many people are tired and vulnerable, and would love nothing more than to escape their day-to-day responsibilities. Clever marketers prey on that susceptibility by showing the consumer how much fun they could have – if they buy whatever the company is selling; it could be alcohol, or vacations, fast food, or even video games – ultimately, the advertisers create a need that the consumer feels they must fill. Those advocating the Party Scene have taken that one step further and are selling an entire lifestyle.

For example, as more and more casinos have cropped up nationwide, we have seen an increasing numbers of advertising campaigns touting gambling as the latest and greatest trend in the entertainment industry. As Mark D. Griffiths (Ph.D.) explains in his articles Gambling Advertising and Marketing, excitement, glitz, and – best of all – winnings, are practically guaranteed in every television commercial; these get-rich-quick-and-live-the-life-you’ve-always-dreamed-of promotions gloss over some of the true threats present in the Party Scene: the high odds of losing when gambling, the associated evils of alcohol and drug consumption, and a belittling of the values of hard work and financial preparation for the future.

While the lure of a temporary escape is powerful in this age of overworked, overtired and underappreciated employees, it behooves the consumer to remember that such escapes truly are temporary and that, while the occasional wild weekend may not cause any harm, abandoning one’s duty to join the party scene will inevitability do more harm than good.

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