You are not overly paranoid. Advertising is a highly developed science of persuasion. They engage audiences on conscious as well as subconscious levels. One could call it manipulative or exploitative. That's controversial. What's not controversial is the fact that it's effective. And that's a perfectly good reason to put some effort into avoiding ads. Take back control of your brain! (Ain't that what we're all about here?) I've reduced my exposure to ads, in various ways. Intentional ones: I use (and recommend) the Chrome/Firefox plugin uBlock Origin. And less intentionally: I just don't watch TV or listen to commercial radio.