Youngsters celebrate brand-hankering while parents cry foul over their growing gluttony
Youngsters habitually overindulge in luxurious goods. Be it expensive gadgets, branded clothes or fancy bikes, the youth wants it all, irrespective of the price. Most of them, in fact, take pride in making such admission: “Our needs alter with the changing scenario. Each member of a family now needs an individual vehicle and cell phone. So nobody wants to compromise on their quality keeping in view their ‘status’ among friends,” says Ganesh, reflecting the youth mindset.
The economy of the world may have been severely hit by recession but it apparently has no effect on the pocket of youngsters in the city. They don’t, any longer, depend merely on the pocket money given by parents but have learnt to earn pay checks thanks to the part time job opportunities available in abundance. Splurging is their hallmark, recession or no recession.
“The money being spent by youngsters has increased manifold these days, as parents prefer having just one or two children to be able to dole out huge sums in the form of pocket money,” says Sanjay, a father of two.
The young ones are brand conscious too. They opt only for a branded product, especially when it comes to the clothes they wear.
For collegians like Sneha, branded clothes provide a certain edge. “Who doesn’t want to look striking and exude a chic persona? I prefer to have a single branded pair of jeans instead of several non branded ones. I work at a chess academy in the summer holidays and my pay check enables me to buy my favourites.”
The young generation’s spending power may have gone up but it is their parents who often complain about their irrational expenditure. Sangeeta, a mother of two college goers, bemoans: “Children don’t understand the value of money. They often demand expensive gadgets or host parties under the influence of classmates or friends. It is the responsibility of the parents to keep a check on the amount being spent by their children.”
A sharp rise in the number of advertisement designed to zero in on the younger lot is further fuelling the degrading trend. Huge untapped markets, their sophisticated techniques and large distribution systems ensure once elusive stuff within easy reach now.
Marketing has become far more sophisticated and refined. The present day advertisers claim that children have become media savvy and therefore require more devious, intrusive, and manipulative techniques of marketing which is subtle yet bang on target.
That kids are spending more time staying glued to the television set than their parents is a matter of serious concern. The moot question here is that should parents vaguely acknowledge that they live in a “consumer society” and try to help this new generation adjust to its vicissitudes or become conscious, active, and public critics of corporate capitalism and proponents of compassionate economic systems?HARJEET KAUR ALLAGH