To make your product or service well known to people, you must advertise them. We would be hard put to imagine a world where there is no advertising; the market is there with its demands and supplies, but advertisements are not a part of the marketing strategy at all. This is because it would never work that way; advertisements have been with us since centuries, ever since the ancient Greeks hung ‘to let’ signs on their houses indicting it was for sale. The pros of advertising are undeniable; but, like everything else, it is not without its flaws. In this article, let us take a look at both sides of the scale.
Pros of advertising ?
First of all, let us see what makes advertising such an important part of our lives.
They help make the product known
A company lets the consumers know about a product or service through advertisements. A good advertisement tells the consumers what the product or service does, who it caters to, and how it is used. Niche markets of a particular product or service are created through effective advertising. Apart from creating a new customer base, advertisements also reach out to existing customers by reminding them of the benefits of the product they have been using, and also keeping them informed about new updates and variations.
An advertisement is mainly aimed at highlighting the plus points of a particular product of service, and upholds them to the customer. This helps in creating a positive image of the product that lures the customer in to try the said product or service. If a customer sits through an attractive advertisement, there is a good chance that they will try the advertised product, which will create a new customer base.
From another perspective, advertisements provide employment to a huge number of people. The advertising industry is huge and lucrative, and brings in thousands of fresh blood looking for an entry into this arguably glamorous industry. From directors to photographers to models, there is a staggering array of jobs that the advertisement industry creates each day.
The customer reaps untold benefits from advertisement, not the least of which is the ability to get informed about various products. If you are thinking of buying an under eye cream, you will not have to reach for the same product you have been using for so long; thanks to advertising, the different manufactures producing the same product will showcase their items, and you will get to choose from a wide array of options.
Cons of advertising ?
All said and done, everything is not as great as it looks. There is a darker side to advertisements that must be mentioned.
Advertisements are supposed to be enticing. However, some of them pretty much go overboard with their depictions and present a completely unrealistic and false picture to potential customers. Take, for instance, Volkswagen’s multi-billion dollar lawsuit that arose from its claims that their cars were environment friendly and low emission. Before investigations were undertaken, the claims had raked in billions of dollars when unsuspecting customers eagerly bought the cars to do their bit for the environment.
If not expressly bared from doing so, makers of harmful products like cigarettes and alcohol are free to advertise their wares to customers. And, like any other manufacturer, they would also employ the usual advertising trope of presenting the product as highly lucrative. This would create a positive image of a product that is in reality almost entirely detrimental. For instance, some studies a few years back showed that more young women had taken up smoking in China due to the glamorous portrayal of cigarettes in advertisements.
Some advertisements can overstep the mark and become quite insensitive in the process. For instance, some advertisements for fairness creams in India depicted the dark complexion of girls as the source of misfortune, and fairer complexions as their key to success and happiness. Such advertisements are misleading and quite insensitive, hurting the sensibilities and feelings of a certain section of the community that are naturally dark-skinned.
Advertisements have been part and parcel of our lives since hundreds of years, and there is no reason to think that they will be gone any time soon. But it should be remembered that they are highly influential media that have a huge impact on all our lives. The smartest thing to do should be to monitor them effectively to ensure that they are intelligent, sensitive, and, to the best of their abilities, true. Only that way can we continue to enjoy their benefits and cut down the losses.