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The Blunt Truth About Kids Opinions

by Erika Phillips
(San Antonio)

If you want a dose of truth, ask a child. Children are extremely opinionated and aren't scared to tell you exactly what they think. So how do kids decide what they love or hate?

Children's opinions are initially formed by their parents. Quite often a child will simply repeat what he or she hears from their parents or older siblings. But, as the child gets older he or she does come to form opinions about what they like. Just ask any mother who's served up breakfast only to be told 'I don't like that' and have it pushed away.

Once children decide what they like, it can be hard to get them to change their minds. Children hold onto opinions quite passionately since it is often their first taste of some kind of independence.

They also see how their opinions can change the way a family shops, where they vacation and what they watch on TV. They tell their friends at school about what they've done or played, the places they've been as well as the things they've eaten.

Childhood friends can have the biggest impact here. If a child goes to school and tells his friends about the new video game he got, his friend might tell him that game is old news and what's really hot right now is another game that's only just been released. As a result, the child who had originally been happy with his game might go home and ask for this newer version and, depending on his parents, he might get what he wants.

Children influence the opinions of those around them by peer pressure and influence, much in the same way adults do. The fact that they are kids doesn't lessen their impact on the marketplace which can easily be seen in commercials and advertising aimed specifically at a younger market.

Over the past few decades it has become increasingly clear that children have a strong influence on advertising and marketing campaigns. Companies should take note of this strong and growing demographic.

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