Managing The Conversation – The Hidden Persuaders

How can marketers pull our strings from behind the scenes to manipulate our emotions, manage the conversation, and effect outcomes in ways we often aren’t even aware of? This short documentary from Channel 4 News on Cambridge Analytics is a tale of how marketers pull the strings to manipulate reality.

Sometimes the truth is hard to distinguish from all the lies that we are presented with in the media. An alternative view of the same news story is presented by Alex Jones. We like to have a choice; we tend towards cognitive dissonance when we have more than one choice, and don’t know which one to believe. Most people prefer to pick a side, and polarised positions result. The media love this too, because they  can feed like vampires off the fear and anxiety created by the uncertainty, and start working on their next story to give us all our next fix.

Marketers and producers in news and social media networks  are experts in keeping us going around in circles, never getting anywhere further in deciphering what the news really means. Obsfucation and misdirection is very much the point of much of the media, who want us to be kept in a confused state (i.e. easier to control and herd in a particular direction), with occasional intelligence-insulting payoffs in the form of flattery from people we don’t even know. One would think this stuff would be hard to fall for, but the truth is, it’s hard-wired into our brains to need a pay-off, to need certainty. We’re only human, after all.

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