Switched-on advertisers ready for a rave

RAVE culture is forcing advertisers to rethink the way they try to sell to young people. According to research for advertising agencies, young people of the Nineties are less materialistic, more creative and more media-literate than five years ago.

Golden Wonder's latest Pot Noodle commercial, suspended by the Independent Television Commission last week for possibly causing epileptic fits, was one attempt to adapt to the change. 'What's better to consume with an intense-tasting snack than intense footage?' an apparently lobotomised television presenter asks as he recovers from the computer-generated psychedelia that accompanied his first taste of the snack.

Andrew Harrison, editor of Select magazine, has followed the new vogue in British advertising. 'It's a nod to rave culture, without being too slavish to the form,' he said.

Beginning with the 'Madchester' explosion of 1987, rave culture has touched the lives of more under-25s than all the previous youth cults put together. Research by Cowan Kemsley Taylor, an advertising agency formed by a breakaway from Saatchi & Saatchi, suggests that a million people now go to licensed raves each week.

The agency claims that rave has changed 'young people's frames of reference' and that it is time the advertising world woke up to its potential. Ever since the New Seekers taught the world to sing - and buy Coke - advertisers have plundered the music industry for inspiration. In the Eighties, Nick Kamen removed his Levi 501s in a laundrette to Marvin Gaye's 'I heard it on the grapevine'.

Beyond that, companies have never been afraid to bolt on to their products the trappings of the latest youth trend. Two years ago, Wrangler deployed the Bronx rapper K Bazz in a swirling, hand-held, black-and-white television commercial and last year Rice Krispies featured cartoon rappers.

But with rave culture, the talk is less of tacking on graphics and soundtracks and more of tapping into the change in attitudes of young people. Charlie Sampson, a board account director at Cowan Kemsley Taylor, explains: 'When you speak to young people in research they talk much more about how they feel about something rather than how it looks. They are less overtly image-conscious than they were four or five years ago.

'If you walked into a club in the Eighties, stereotypically the girls would be dancing around their handbags while the guys were 'Araldited' to the walls. Now the guys are dancing with each other. The barriers have come down. People are much more open with each other. If you asked someone for a sip of their water they used to say, 'Sod off'. Now they say, 'Sure, no problem.'

'The received wisdom of how to market to young people - which is to be very stylish, very modern, very clever - is outdated. It is now more important to be relevant. Creativity comes at a premium.'

Most observers are pretty clear on what advertisers should not do to exploit the rave scene. Mr Harrison says: 'You can't tap into rave culture by putting a mad acid-house track on a commercial for a cereal or by dressing up the Gold Blend couple in Lycra. That is precisely the kind of thing that rave culture has taught kids to distrust.'

Commercials that are performing well include Tango, the 'Reg' campaign for Embassy Regal cigarettes and the 'ravey' Pot Noodles.

News
peopleHowards' Way actress, and former mistress of Jeffrey Archer, was 60
Sport
Romelu Lukaku puts pen to paper
sport
News
Robyn Lawley
people
Arts and Entertainment
Unhappy days: Resistance spy turned Nobel prize winner Samuel Beckett
books
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
News
people
Life and Style
Troy Baker and Ashley Johnson voice the show’s heroes
gamingOnce stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover
News
A speech made by the Turkish Deputy Prime Minister urging women not to laugh in public in order to preserve morality has sparked a backlash on social media from women posting defiant selfies of themselves laughing at his remarks.
GALLERYWhy are Turkish women having a chuckle at the government's expense?
News
i100
Life and Style
Phones will be able to monitor your health, from blood pressure to heart rate, and even book a doctor’s appointment for you
techCould our smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases via Health Kit and Google Fit?
News
people
Extras
indybest
Travel
Ryan taming: the Celtic Tiger carrier has been trying to improve its image
travelRyanair has turned on the 'charm offensive' but can we learn to love the cut-price carrier again?
Sport
Usain Bolt confirms he will run in both the heats and the finals of the men's relay at the Commonwealth Games
commonwealth games
Life and Style
Slim pickings: Spanx premium denim collection
fashionBillionaire founder of Spanx launches range of jeans that offers 'thigh-trimming construction'
News
Sabina Altynbekova has said she wants to be famous for playing volleyball, not her looks
people
News
i100
Life and Style
tech'World's first man-made leaves' could use photosynthesis to help astronauts breathe
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Team Secretary - (Client Development/Sales Team) - Wimbledon

£28000 - £32000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Secretary (Sales Team Support) - Mat...

SEN KS1 Teacher

£21804 - £31868 per annum: Randstad Education Chelmsford: Qualified and experi...

KS2 Teacher

£21588 - £31552 per annum: Randstad Education Chelmsford: Exceptional teacher ...

Year 5/6 Teacher

£100 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: Would you like to be part ...

Day In a Page

Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
We will remember them: relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War

We will remember them

Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

Acting in video games gets a makeover

David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices
Could our smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases via Health Kit and Google Fit?

Could smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases?

Health Kit and Google Fit have been described as "the beginning of a health revolution"
Ryanair has turned on the 'charm offensive' but can we learn to love the cut-price carrier again?

Can we learn to love Ryanair again?

Four recent travellers give their verdicts on the carrier's improved customer service
Billionaire founder of Spanx launches range of jeans that offers

Spanx launches range of jeans

The jeans come in two styles, multiple cuts and three washes and will go on sale in the UK in October
10 best over-ear headphones

Aural pleasure: 10 best over-ear headphones

Listen to your favourite tracks with this selection, offering everything from lambskin earmuffs to stainless steel
Commonwealth Games 2014: David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end

Commonwealth Games

David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end
UCI Mountain Bike World Cup 2014: Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings

UCI Mountain Bike World Cup

Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings
Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star