Advertisingand the need for a Regulation
Researchhas indicated that the world of business and trade is changing at anextremely high rate in the perspectives starting from production allthe way to consumption. Dynamism has been witnessed in areas such asproduction technique, distribution techniques, promotional techniquesas well as advertising techniques. The world is witnessingtechnological advancements in all the functions of management.Advertising in an organization is a key factor towards the success ofthe organization (Green 1). Various scholars have documented thestrategies and techniques of advertising to win a competitive edge inthe marketplace. Many organizations are running adverts in all theavailable platforms such as Facebook and twitter, not like the oldtimes of only print media and television adverts (Beri 447). Therehas risen a new function in both business and social life this isthe social media platform. Advertising agencies are running severaladverts without considering the target audience. There has also beenthe aspect of corruption of morals of the society through misleadingadverts (Tyagi 55). The following is an argument in favor for a needto regulate advertising.
Marketstoday are characterized by competition among different organizationsproducing similar commodities. This has forced management to coinbusiness strategies to remain ahead of the competitors (Green 8). Oneof the ways of creating a competitive advantage is through productionof superior products as compared to the competitors. This strategy isnot sustainable in the current digital market and, therefore, themanagement requires rethinking of another strategy. The best strategyis in the application of Information Technology in marketing.Management has heavily invested in the field of advertising to gain alarge market share. The platforms used to air adverts have alsochanged to include the now common social sites. Social media siteshave generated heated debates among the various professionals who areconcerned about ethics (Green 15). For instance, the adverts placedon Facebook and don’t contain age rating for the viewers.
Whereasadvertising has been useful in the provision of information, it isevident that there has been various negative aspects associated withadvertisements. This is clearly shown by the many moral issuesassociated to advertising (Comstock 168). One major negative effectassociated with advertisements aired on various platforms is thedeclining levels of morality. The morality levels of society areinfluenced by the level and state of content of the adverts aired.Many advertising agencies are ignoring the call to rate their advertsbefore airing them to the audience. There has been no clearregulation which should control the form of content that advertisingagencies air. Young children have been imitating what they hear andsee from media in the form of adverts. This has resulted to drasticimmoral behavioral changes among them and also in the presence oftheir elders. Although, many people have attributed immoralbehavioral change to the generation gap, research has showed that ithas resulted from the influence by the adverts they watch (Green 15).
Advertisingagencies have indulged in fierce campaigns with their business rivalsto catch the attention of large audiences (Green 20). This hasresulted to abandoning of the morality consideration in the variousadverts being run. For instance, an advert concerning the use ofcontraceptives in family planning may lead to a heated because it isnot rated for young children. Business functions and professions havealso shifted their gears. For instance, professions that are notsupposed to advertise their services have become prey to theseadvertising campaigns. The industry has also loosened the regulationof the campaigns that should be conducted in line to the requirementof the general public (Junwei 3).
Acontroversy has been witnessed in the switch of advertising platformto incorporate mobile commerce and social media marketing strategythat targets all groups of customers (Green 16). It is possible toreach a huge customer base when a clearly defined marketing strategyis developed. However, the material content distributed through thechannels is not regulated so as not to reach the wrong audience suchas young children. Many of these adverts ran through these sites aremisleading to the general public (Comstock 169). An instance iswhereby a person is encouraged to subscribe to a social platformwhereby they will get connections to blind dates.
Anothercase is that of a misleading health advert that promotes variouscrude methods of checking on weight (Green 30). The target group ofsocial media marketing is a young and technology savvy population.Mobile commerce and social media marketing strategy target all groupsof customers. It is possible to reach a huge customer base when aclearly defined marketing strategy is developed. The institutionstasked with the sole duty of regulating such businesses should cleardoubts in the consumer markets. This can be achieved through strictregulation rules that call for a vetting before an advert is placedon any platform (Gerard 243). Age regulation of the adverts shouldalso be considered in the vetting process.
Misleadingadverts are run on national television without any proper regulation(Green 50). There is also an investment in the print media wherebyvarious advertising agencies run their adverts targeting the generalpublic without issuing any advisory note. On a daily basis un-ratedadverts are viewed by various groups of people changing theirperception towards certain products. For instance, and advert thatshows the superiority of a certain brand of maize flour whereas it isnot the case. Parents become comfortable watching some of the advertsin the presence of their children. Targeted audiences are misled tobuy products that are not of any use to their lives (Gerard 243).Young children are also misled some of the adverts promoting productsthat are not for their use at that age. This is clearly shown by anadvert promoting the use of contraceptives which are not a productfor the children (Green 45).
Modernadverts target certain groups in the society who are not able to makethe correct decision. For instance, an advert promoting the habit ofadolescents attending various parties and the benefit they have.Adolescent is the most crucial stage in the development of a humanbeing since it is the beginning of the many major changes in the body(Green 25). It attracts the attention of the various scholars sincethe adolescents view themselves as the center of the world. The stagemarks the transition between childhood and adulthood where the bodystarts to develop and grow. This stage is crucial as many advertisingagencies may tend to run adverts targeting this group (Gerard 242).
Additionally,adverts meant to promote stimulant drugs such as cigarettes have beenon the rise. This has had a negative effect on the health of thepeople who use such drugs. The resulting effect is many youths andother members of the population taking the drug which is harmful totheir health. Advertisements have also led to the abuse of otherdrugs such as the abuse of alcohol among the youth (Green 29).Majority of the population tend to use cigarette as a recreationaldrug without considering the health problems associated. This hasbeen facilitated by the numerous adverts about drugs. Continuousadverts of tobacco and other drugs leads to their consumption for along time, which causes addiction.According to the world health organization report, tobacco smoking isthe leading drug consumed. Largest proportion of the increased usageis attributed to adverts that do not contain advisory messages to thetarget audience (Junwei 3).
Poorpromotional and advertisement programs have also led to youthindulging in alcohol (Green 31). In the modern society, many Americanyouths are indulging in alcohol resulting to addiction. Although,there is a set minimum age of twenty-one years, youth below this ageare involving themselves in the vice. Advertising campaignscontaining false information of the effects of drinking has been thehighest contributing factor (Tyagi 55). It is from addiction toalcohol and other drugs that explain the rampant cases of violenceamong youths. Juvenile cases have been on the rise in the recent pastand a high percentage is associated with the indulgence in drug abuse(Green 38). Advertising campaigns are also being carried out to putpressure on lowering the drinking age.
Packagingand branding of the various products has also boosted the advertisingcampaigns. There have been several cases reported of the misleadinginformation on the surface of a packaged product (Green 43). Variouswording contained on the packages of products which contain messagesthat are not understood by end users, and this may result in productabuse. Another instance is where a product is portrayed in a goodimage with the sole intention of deceiving those who use that product(Brenkert 350). This is unethical in the operation of the businessand, therefore, all the involved parties should take theresponsibility.
Advertisementis a principal cause of the emotional wreck of the various targetaudiences (Green 78). The various adverts ran in any media platformcreate a sense of illusion to the person viewing the advert. Peoplemake decisions of buying products which they do not require in theirlives. Tyler Durden, once observed, ‘Advertising has us chasingcars and clothes, working jobs we hate so we can buy shit we don’tneed’ (Comstock 167). This was a response to the negative picturecreated by the many ads that air in many media sites. This may resultto a social crime where a person is tempted to involve in a crime toown the advertised product. Social classes can also be attributed tothe various promotional and advertising programs conducted. Peopletend to feel inferior in the presence of their colleagues who own theadvertised commodity. This result to moral degradation of the societyaffected (Gerard 240).
Advertisementhas also contributed to the production of low quality and substantialproducts (Green 75). The general public is conceived to believecertain products have higher qualities than others. The resultingeffect of such a scenario is unfair competition among manufacturingorganization that fight for the market share. When competition ishigh, it means the demand is also likely to be high. Manymanufacturers tend to compromise the quality of their products thusoffering consumers inferior goods.This happens as a result of high demand, which forces manufacturersto compromise on quality for high production. This does notcommensurate with the price offered for that given product by theconsumer. It is clearly noted therefore, that advertising isun-ethical practice in the business world if not well regulated.
Themorality level of society is also compromised by some certain adverts(Green 76). For instance, in the promotional of certain magazines,vulgar language is used. There is also the incorporation of nudepictures which may not be appealing to all the target audience. Insuch an event, advertising lacks the moral aspect of promoting goodethics. Accessibility to some of the adverts of this nature isreadily available even to the children who will think it is right tofollow the advert. Religion also suffers from those adverts thatpromote social evils in the society. Advert promoting an act of crimeor terror is misleading to the general public and thus should bebanned if not regulated (Green 79). Social evil may also arise wherean individual is misled by an advert to compromise on ethics.It is agreeable to a huge portion of the society that a vast majorityof the adverts are immoral. This is due to the widespread andaccessibility nature of the advertising avenues such as magazines andthe television.
Finally,but not the least, advertising is used to confront the buyingbehaviors of consumers (Green 80). Consumers are forced to believethere is a distinction among the items offered whereas in the realworld there is not.This is mainly achieved through deceiving packaging which tends tolure consumers. However, it is vital to note that some products arepackaged genuinely and the packages reflect the actual product. Also,the branding concepts applied have a capacity to confuse the buyer inthe decision making process. Result of the illusions caused isconsumers buying low-quality products at the expense at the price(Blackwell 197). Genuine products have become hard to detect due tothe presence of the many counterfeit products. All this is caused bythe misleading advertisement program run by the organization(Brenkert 351). The false adverts also result in poor decision makingamong many buyers who do not have the necessary information about aproduct.
Neverthe less, advertising is coupled by some benefit especially in termsof revenue increase to the organization (Green 58). Management hasheavily invested in the field of advertising to gain a large marketshare. There is the introduction of various social media platformswhich have created an edge among business rivals. The old fashions ofadvertising are being abandoned, and new approaches that apply themodern technology are used (Hoboken 80). The platforms used to airadverts have also changed to include the now common social sites. Theresulting effect is larger coverage of the products’ adverts, andthis increases the market share of the product. The shareholders ofthese organizations are also benefitting from the increase owners’equity resulting to guaranteed dividends.
Advertisingagencies should stick to the professionalism in their work. Personalcode of ethics is what determines the moral uprightness of a person(Green 52).It is, however general knowledge that there are various ethicalstandards that are commonly agreed by the society at large. Nudepictures and vulgar language in advertisements are unacceptable. Inthis regard, the advertising agencies must stick to the widelyacceptable code of ethics. In addition, it refers to the feelings onehave on the action. It guides a person in the personal life andprofessional life. Based on a personal code of ethics, a personjudges the consequentiality and non-consequentiality theories ofmoral ethics. Principles of good morals govern priorities in life.Ethics determines the morality of an individual and society at large.The most important thing in life is to have a sense of morality andwell-being. When an individual is morality upright, they can achieveas many things as they wish. All these are supposed to be observed bythe various advertising agencies in their work (Comstock 168).
Governmentshould highly invest in the regulation of the industry of advertisingto curb unscrupulous businesses. This can be done through issuance oflegislation that penalizes those who break the law. The institutionscharged with the responsibility of regulating such businesses shouldclear doubts in the consumer markets (Green 63). This can be achievedthrough strict regulation rules that call for a vetting before anadvert is placed on any platform.For instance, adverts on the television must be friendly to all agesthe explicit images on adverts must be censored. Age regulation ofthe adverts should also be considered in the vetting process. Qualityshould be emphasized rather than quantity in any promotional strategyof any product (Junwei 5).In other words, the adverts allowed on any platform such astelevision must focus on impacting positive thoughts on the peoplerather than negative thoughts. Long magazines full of nude andsemi-nude photos, as well as vulgar language should be substitutedwith short magazines which contain quality and educative content. Itis also the role of the government to offer advisory services to theadvertising agencies.Such advisory services could be the advice that the government offersin regard to the content of the adverts aired.
Inconclusion, it is proven beyond doubt that advertising should beregulated. Advertising has resulted to the degradation of the moralvalues of a society. Advertising agencies should have their ads ratedbefore they reach an audience this is in line with the requirementof regulating the content. There has been much documentation byscholars on the strategies used by organizations to remaincompetitive in the market. This is evident by the adverts that arerun in the social media sites such as Facebook and twitter which isdifferent from the old times of only print media and televisionadverts. There has risen a new function in both business and sociallife this is the social media sites. Advertising agencies arerunning several adverts without considering the target audience(Hoboken 81). There has also been the aspect of corruption of moralsof the society through misleading adverts. Children have becomerebellious towards their parents as a result of the adverts theywatch and hear. All this explains the need to regulate theadvertising industry.
Brenkert,George G, and Tom L. Beauchamp. TheOxford Handbook of Business Ethics.Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010. Print. Pp351 .This sourceaffirms the concept of deception of consumers in the process ofadvertising.
Beri,G C. MarketingResearch.New Delhi: Tata McGraw-Hill, 2008. Print. Pp 449. The source seeks toaddress the importance of the advertising through media such asTelevision, advertising agencies, magazines and newspaper. The sourcealso provides theoretical framework through which numerous approachescan be used to develop a comprehensive advertising research. Calder,Bobby J. Kelloggon Advertising & Media: The Kellogg School of Management.Hoboken, N.J: John Wiley & Sons, 2008. Internet resource. Pp. 81. This source demonstrates a myopic perception of the value ofadvertising to the customers. Additionally, it depicts thesynergistic effect of media content and advertising on the customer’svalue of overall experience.
Comstock,George, and Erica Scharrer. Mediaand the American Child.Burlington: Elsevier, 2007. Internet resource. Pp 169. The sourceemphasis on the various roles of the media in the dissemination ofcorrect information to consumers. It also focuses on the ethicalperspective of the advertising agencies.
GerardJ. Tellis. A Journal on “Generalizationsabout Advertising Effectiveness in Markets.”Marshall School of Business, the University of Southern California,May, 2009. PP. 240-244. The source stipulate that the evaluation ofthe advertising usefulness in the markets involve identifying marketresponse to a business’s advertising or brand’s advertising. Itcategorizes the advertising research into advertising weight,elasticity, content, frequency and wear-in or wear-out.
JunweiCao. Journalon Evaluationof Advertising Effectiveness Using Agent-Based Modeling andSimulation.Departmentof Computer Science, University of Warwick, Bristol, 1999. Pg. 3.This sources the major factors related to the evaluation of theadvertising usefulness. The author says that major factors describingdetermining the usefulness of the advertising include but notrestricted to consumer, product or service, environment medium ischosen, and advertisement. He adds that these factors can be studiedin a variety of manifestations.
Pardun,Carol J. Advertisingand Society: An Introduction.Chichester, West Sussex: Wiley Blackwell, 2014. Internet resource.Pp197. The source explains the behaviors consumers portray afterfollowing a certain advert.
Tyagi,C. L., & Kumar, A. Advertisingmanagement.New Delhi: Atlantic, 2004. Pp 1-60. This source concentrates on theimportance of different kinds of advertising and also the regulationsthat should be enacted to curb misleading adverts.
Comstock,George, and Erica Scharrer. Mediaand the American Child.Burlington: Elsevier, 2007. Internet resource.
Beri,G C. MarketingResearch.New Delhi: Tata McGraw-Hill, 2008. Print.
Brenkert,George G, and Tom L. Beauchamp. TheOxford Handbook of Business Ethics.Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010. Print.
Calder,Bobby J. Kelloggon Advertising & Media: The Kellogg School of Management.
Comstock,George, and Erica Scharrer. Mediaand the American Child.Burlington: Elsevier, 2007. Internet resource.
GerardJ. Tellis. A Journal on “Generalizationsabout Advertising Effectiveness in Markets.”Marshall School of Business, University of Southern California, May,2009
Green,Jen. Advertising.New York: Rosen Central, 2012. Print.
Hoboken,N.J: John Wiley & Sons, 2008. Internet resource.
JunweiCao. Journalon Evaluationof Advertising Effectiveness Using Agent-Based Modeling andSimulation.Departmentof Computer Science, University of Warwick, Bristol, 1999.
Pardun,Carol J. Advertisingand Society: An Introduction.Chichester, West Sussex: Wiley Blackwell, 2014. Internet resource.
Tyagi,C. L., & Kumar, A. Advertisingmanagement.New Delhi: Atlantic, 2004