Selling Skinny: Marketing, Social Media, And Female Body Image
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Although eating disorders are a psychiatric problem, the increasing prevalence indiagnoses has been attributed to the relationship between marketing’s portrayal of a body ideal and how it manifests into consumer body dissatisfaction. Additionally, as society moves toward a more digital space, a consumer’s exposure to marketing has risen due to the dissemination of Internet and social media content. This relationship becomes increasingly blurred as consumers are now becoming content creators, and marketing exposure is less formal and less regulated. Applying the concepts of the relationship between traditional marketing and body ideals, how has the Internet and social media contributed to the current landscape of female body image? This is the question this paper seeks to answer.The first task is to understand how traditional marketing in the past several decades has created a thin ideal that female consumers are expected to conform to. The second task is to discover how to apply consumer behaviortheories to a more digital age of marketing that incorporates Internet and social media usage. Third, I will examine how these components contribute to the modern landscape of female body image, and the implications of an emerging ideal. Finally, I will examine the effectiveness of body positivity and media literacy campaign in order to understand how to efficiently change consumer and societal body dissatisfaction.