for envy makes the world go around…
“You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or male or female slave, or ox, or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor” (Exodus 20:1-17)
Envy is one of the seven deadly sins in the Catholic tradition. It is considered sinful by theological morals because envious people ignore their own blessings, and focus on others’ status rather than their own spiritual growth. Envy is often confused with the Deadly Sin of covetousness, or greed, a desire for material wealth (which may or may not belong to others). Envy is also strictly forbidden in Islam, as one should be happy with what (s)he has instead of looking at others.
Recently British and Swiss researchers have found advertisements featuring celebrity endorsements might be less effective than those featuring ordinary people. – BATH, England, Feb. 28 (UPI)
This success is driven exactly by the need of keeping up with the Joneses, rather than with famous people. Hence, next to covetousness, envy is the main motivation behind many people’s choice of which products to buy.
The mentioned researchers showed 298 undergraduates a magazine ad for a digital camera, some including an endorsement by a fictional student who said the camera was “hot,” while other ads included an invented testimonial from a German celebrity.
“Our research questions whether celebrities are the best way to sell products,” said Professor Brett Martin of the University of Bath. “This is because many people … like to make sure their product is fashionable and trendy among people who resemble them, rather than approved by celebrities.”
But Martin added, “What is also important in our study is that people who aren’t bothered about having the trendiest goods pay more attention to the technical details of a product and ignore endorsements by anyone, celebrity or not, and advertisers should bear that in mind, too.”
However Paul James, managing director of Stepping Stones Marketing Solutions in Cardiff, says that’s not always the case.
He said, “It really depends on the product you’re trying to sell and the company that’s selling it.
“Sometimes using the right celebrity with the right product can be very valuable… Where there is a strong link, for example to a sport or to fashion or a film coming out, that’s a strong motivator to use a celebrity.”
But he admitted that there are some cases where portraying “real people” works best.
He added, “The Vauxhall Zafira advert where they use children to show the car off is very much that sort of feel… It’s more relating to what the next door neighbour has rather than using a celebrity.”
So there is always a point to using real envy for the right product …