The aim of this term paper is to discuss the concept of marketing ethics as it relates to advertising. Advertising is a not a new phenomenon, but recent developments have posed a dilemma to marketers in their quest to do ethical advertising…
According to the research findings there are numerous advertising media including the traditional television, radio, newspapers, mail and billboards, and the postmodern computer based internet advertisement channels including email, blogs, websites, programs and search engines among others. The increased number of advertising channels and methods of collecting data for advertising have pushed advertising ethics even further, and an advertiser has to be keen not to cross the line between ethical and unethical. In addition, personalised advertising that exploits various approaches to data mining is so effective that the persuasive and exploitative aspects of advertising have become a matter of serious concern to various stakeholders. This has been linked to the ethical aspects of consumer privacy that has resulted in the enactment of policies that provide guidelines on online data collection and use. However, these policies aim at forcing advertisers to do no harm, and advertisers have to decide if they just want to avoid harming consumers, or they would want to do some public good too. The Advertising Standards Authority controls the content of advertisements in the United Kingdom, and the town and county planning system controls the content of outdoor advertisements. However, enforcement of advertising ethics goes beyond these bodies and extends to numerous independent consumer protection groups, and before advertising, a business entity has to predict the response that the advertisement is likely to elicit from these regulators. However, the regulators’ definitions of ethics are too broad, and the advertiser is largely responsible for the contents of advertisements (Hunt and Vitell, 2006: 150). Advertisement ethics is determined by the effects of the advertisement on the human, cultural, social, economic and political consequences of an advertisement on society. The aim of this term paper is to discuss the concept of marketing ethics as it relates to advertising. Background Information Common Advertising Media Advertising is the first communication between a firm and its prospective customers; therefore, the firm must do a decent job of it in order to have an impact and increase the likelihood of adverts translating to increased sales. Therefore, an advertisement must be designed create awareness, knowledge, liking, preference and conviction in a potential customer in order for him or her to make a purchase. Advertisers have always exploited the available media to the greatest extent, such that advertising accounts for a big portion of a firm’s expenditure. Traditional advertisements like radio are still in use today, though their use is reducing due to the emergence of more effective technologies that combine both the audio and visual components of advertisements (Kelley et al., 2011). Compared to other senses, visual reception causes the most impact on a person’ ...
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