Snack Food Purchase - Child Influence
To determine the level of influence kids have on snack food purchase decisions made by mom (or another adult in the household) as well as case studies of brands that have benefited from advertising directly to kids.
- The top three considerations influencing parent's or guardian's decisions when purchasing snacks for kids include health-related concerns (26 percent), child influence (21 percent), and habit (12 percent), according to a recent study published by Science Direct.
- Child influence was further broken down by the study into three factors. In most cases, child influence is exhibited through the child's preference (41 percent) — that is, the child's liking of a particular snack. The other two factors are because the child asked for a particular snack (38 percent), and the child choosing him/herself (20percent).
- In another study published by Research Gate, the most common methods by which children influence snack food purchase decision include making a verbal request (41 percent), reaching for the item (24 percent), and pointing to the item (19 percent).
- According to a study published by the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, kids aged 3–5 who saw ads within the past seven days were 34 percent more likely to eat specific cereals than kids who did not see the ads.
- The study further added that kids within the age bracket are significantly influenced by the type of ads they watch and generally incapable of critically analyzing ad content.
- Food brands in the United States generally avoid advertising foods high in fat, sugar, or salt (HFSS) directly to children below the age of 16. Although there are series of regulations around targeting kids and teens with food ads.
Proposed next steps:
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We are suggesting further research that will build upon the initial findings. To that end, we'd recommend research to identify 2 - 3 case studies of brands that have benefited from advertising directly to kids. For each, we will provide the name of the firm, a brief overview of the ad, and any success factors (such as growth and revenue) associated with the ads.
In the course of our research, we discovered that some aspects of child-targeted advertising are regulated, and in some cases prohibited. We are proposing an analysis of the regulations associated with advertising snacks directly to kids. Specifically, we will provide 5 - 7 insights regarding if/how brands in the United States are able to advertise snacks products directly to kids, and what types of snacks they legally allowed to advertise directly to kids.