In this modern world, everything depends upon things that attract people more. Remember looking into some posters, wallpapers etc, filled with some content on products or services? What are these and why are those put up everywhere? Have you ever wondered why visibility is so important?. Well, this information that you see is simply called “Advertisement”. Businesses largely depend on this mode of communication, to reach out to target customers more effectively. Everyone has a question like, are they useful?. If yes, how and what are the different ways of reaching people?
What are Advertisements?
Advertisements are very effective and crucial means of communication, supplying relevant information for the promotion of goods and services. It is a form of paid non-personal communication, wherein business ideas and information on products are sent out to people. We have seen advertisements of cement companies like Birla, Aditya, j.k and many more. Like we have for laptops, t.v, bikes, cars etc, where the company provides needful information about their products to attract customers to buy their products, increasing their sales and in turn, their revenues.
Customers get easily attracted towards catchy or interesting ads that appear in newspapers, magazines, TV and even social media.
Social media helps companies in focused targeting. This means, you can decide who sees your ad and when. This can be done through paid campaigns on various social media platforms like facebook.
If your customers are in the age group of 18 and above, belonging only to your city, your ad will feature only on the devices of those people. Thus, such paid campaigns help firms target customers better and more effectively, while also curtailing costs incurred in campaigning.
Ethics in advertising stand on the border of the right and the wrong. There are certain rules and restrictions that companies have to follow, while advertising, so that they do not offend or harm the interests of either their viewers or their competitors.
But what are unethical advertisements?. Well, using advertisements in the wrong way or, making misleading or false claims to lure people into buying products, are some ways of unethical advertising. Ads meant for children should be clear and transparent about the product, its uses,etc. This is because, sometimes, children misrepresent ads and not quite understand what the ad is actually about, especially children under 12 years of age. However, some say it is unethical to target children under 12, in the first place, as they may not understand what an ad is, and view it in a way they are not supposed to.
When are Ads considered unethical?
provide false or wrong information.
are against public and notional interest
present immoral activities
use others’ personal information
Derogate a caste, community or religion.
they are considered unethical.
Simply put, ad ethics mean a set of moral principles and rules which companies should abide by, while presenting their ads to the public. One of the best ethical advertisements are alcohol ads. Till date there has been no ad showing actual liquor, instead they use sodas, water etc. Similarly, ads for cigarettes and tobacco do not talk about these substances directly as these cause cancer and other diseases, and have been banned in countries like India, Norway, Finland etc. This type of advertising is called “Surrogate Marketing” i.e., marketing the original product via other products.
Generally, big companies never lie as they have to prove their points to various ad regulating bodies. Truth is always said but not completely. Sometimes it is better not to reveal the whole truth in the ad but at times truth has to be shown for betterment. Recently, the Vatican issued an article which says ads should follow three moral principles - truthfulness, social responsibility and upholding human dignity.
So, ethical Ads are very important in building credibility. By being open in their communication, companies show how they have nothing to hide and that they genuinely care for those who are buying their products.
Ways advertisements help businesses
Advertisements help businesses boost their profits by reaching more people and making them aware of their products and services, resulting in more sales. The following are some benefits of advertising
Advertisements make your company, money.
What it means is, ads attract more people within a short period of time and increase sales. When consumers see more strong and positive ads, they are more willing to buy those products.
Ads keep the consumers updated about your product.
When a new product is ready to launch, Ads gives or provides information so that when the products enter the market, the sales should be at its peak.
Ads give an edge over competitors.
In this strong competitive world, people choose those which are more convincing over those who are not. Advertisement helps businesses to stay ahead of competitors. Advertisements are how you convince the consumer that you are to whom they should choose.
Advertisements attract new customers.
Ads bring new customers into your stores, thus helping in market penetration. Again, more customers, mean more sales. Besides, the more times people see your ads, greater is the possibility of them remembering your brand.
Advertising increases company traffic.
More consumers visit business after seeing their ads. More customers mean more sales and more business for you. A survey of 3000 companies found that advertisers who maintained or expanded their advertising over a five-year period found an increase of 100% sales, and companies who cut their advertisements grew at half the rate, than those who advertised steadily.
Free Advertisements- Zero cost Ads.
Creative and innovative methods of advertising are more effective than spending huge amounts on Ads. Businesses get large benefits when they find “no cost Ads”.
One of the best examples for this is “Starbucks”. They write down the customer’s names on the cups and call each customer by their name. Starbucks breaks the barrier separating friends from strangers. This is how you make people feel welcome so that they buy from you again. You must have seen people posting pictures of their Starbucks cup, with their names on it. This gives free promotions, worth billions of dollars. Can you think of any other, similarly innovative promotional strategy?
I think it is important that we all recognize the power advertising has in influencing our choice of brands, both consciously and subconsciously. Our society is now dependent on commerce, and many businesses depend on advertising their brands in order to stay in business. But, it is probably better to keep it regulated. Nowadays companies have to adjust according to its consumers, for their long term benefits. Ads play a vital role in bringing customers towards your business. A business should keep in mind the cost of advertising and the amount of returns from it. Every business works differently. Ads should be unique in this super competitive market. Brands that present efficient ads are more likely to be favoured over other brands.