Misleading Advertisements

Misleading Advertisements

In the wake of increasing competition in the world of business, most companies have embarked on advertisement campaigns aimed at luring consumers to their products. The nature of advertisements is that they accentuate the strength of a certain product while concealing the disadvantages of the same product. Essentially, all adverts aim at influencing the consumers to make favorable decisions in respect to the purchase of the products. While most companies go an extra mile in making their products more appealing in the eyes of the consumers, they sometimes do so at the consumer’s expense. Usually, the manner in which the products are displayed does not reflect the true reality on the ground. This scenario results in the eventual disappointment of consumers and may even work negatively against the company. The current generation of product advertisements is misleading to the consumers especially on the product usage.

In the course of advertisements, companies tend to portray a different picture of the products from the one that is realistic. In so doing, the company’s end up raising the hopes and expectations of the consumers only to realize later that it was all hype. Good advertisements are persuasive and prompt consumers to purchase the intended products. However, companies are prone to mislead the consumers by appealing to their emotions in different ways. The advertisers have prior knowledge of the emotional attachment that consumers have towards certain products (Schrank, 2009). The companies could thus appeal to these emotions in a bid to persuade the consumers to make purchases of the products on sale. Normally, the advertised products are tipped to do more than they actually can with an emotional touch that makes people want to try them out. For instance, women who have had difficulties in removing stains during laundry may be misled through adverts that declare a detergent can remove all stains. Some consumers may take this to imply that the detergents are capable of removing literally all stains including those that cannot be removed in reality. In buying the products, the consumers are then acting on misleading information that is hidden beneath catchy advertisement phrases.

Another way in which advertisements can be misleading is through the appearance of the products being advertised. Some of the adverts floated in the different information media are presented in a manner that appears to be authoritative when indeed they are not. In some cases, companies may get the services of print media writers and editors to shape opinion on certain products through articles. In these articles, the writers can claim their use of certain products and services and how they derived satisfaction from the same. The most notable advertisements that mislead in this respect are those that hype certain hotels and restaurants. In such cases, the writers may claim to have visited certain locations and testify of the overwhelming experience they achieved from such visits. In most cases, however, these writers rely on information from the companies advancing such authoritative appearances. The writers happen to not have visited the venues in reality but depend on the company’s narration to put down articles that sway the audience to these locations. In concealing the adverts through articles that command authority, the company’s not only mislead through the appearance but also in terms of the intent of such adverts. The people behind such adverts could be lauded for their innovation but they are just dishonest and cunning people out to mislead the public into their bait. Adverts should be labeled as adverts and the public should honestly be notified of the intent of different adverts before they are propagated to them.

Companies may also float misleading adverts through hiding any imperfection. For instance, a company manufacturing beauty products may use models to portray the beauty that results from the product’s usage. However, the choice of what the consumer sees is dictated by the intents of the company advancing the adverts. In reality, such models do not look as good as they are portrayed to do. In fact, there is a general consensus that adverts are photo shopped in a bid to sway the consumers into buying the products. Moreover, most of the models do not even have a prior usage of the products they are using. Even when the models have used the products before, the results portrayed are not attributable to the products alone (Fowles, 1997). By defining the perfections of certain aspects in life, adverts attain an advantage in misleading consumers into believing that they must attain those aspects to be cool in society. For instance, adverts may portray beauty as having a slender body and use that to advertise a product whose usage results in such a body. However, the adverts do not show the imperfections of the use of those products but conceal the same to portray a fake perception.

There is an increased use of advertisements to market products and increase customer penetration. However, the strategy is normally used at the expense of the customers through the propagation of misleading information regarding the products.  Essentially, a large percentage of the current advertisements are misleading leading to ill informed choices from the customers. Although adverts are free to be innovative, they must not exceed the boundaries of truthfulness. Nonetheless, consumers must however be able to decipher the misleading facts in adverts because the companies do not intend to reveal the same.


Works cited

Schrank, Sarah. Art and the City: Civic Imagination and Cultural Authority in Los Angeles. , 2009. Internet resource.

Fowles, John. The Collector. Boston: Little, Brown and Co, 1997. Internet resource.


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