Companies give it their best shot by marketing the message they are trying to send marketing is what separates impasses from success and mediocrity. A quote taken from the perspective of John Berger stated, “Without ethics, man has no future. This is to say, mankind without them cannot be itself” (Berger, 2009). Staying consistent and knowing what the business stands for is crucial to the successful business operations that come along with marketing.
Those companies that take it upon themselves to operate under ethical and legal standards are more likely to see consistent returns on their efforts while staying away from legal complications. In order to take into consideration the ethical and legal issues here in the United States, marketing and advertisements need to be put under close watch to ensure that integrity is being upheld; it is detrimental for the seller and consumer relationship. Marketing to Children Marketing to children has created a huge niche as of recent with $17 billion plus spent each year in an effort to consume the minds of our youth (Scorch, 2004).
At the moment a few government regulations are in place to ensure children’s best interest when it comes to marketing, however much of the regulations are in the hands of the organization to determine if they are taking ethical actions. Regulations enforced by The Federal Trade Commission were put in place so that content targeting children was not to be misleading, but even with regulatory progress being made each day there are no age restrictions that limit whom marketers can target. Honesty in Advertising As in any situation dealing with business, honesty plays a crucial part in marketing well.
In our country certain government agencies such as the Federal trade Commission have been appointed to enforce the regulations that deal with truth in advertising. Regulations that were established through Federal trade and efforts of the FTC were established to keep order of certain rules that this branch deemed ethical, legal or will need to be taken into consideration (Ingram, 2014). According to Ingram, “advertisements in the U. S. Must by truthful, not deceptive and not unfair” (Ingram, 2014).
The FTC deems “deceitful statements are those that are likely to mislead consumers who act reasonably under normal circumstances and that are likely to affect consumers’ purchase decisions” Under rule of the FTC, marketing may e deemed unfair when they display or promote products likely to cause substantial or unavoidable injury when used (Ingram, 2014). Even though currently there are a few regulations that help govern honesty in marketing, most of them are not up to par when attempting to encompass all aspects of marketing honestly.
A suggestion to be made in regard to honesty most certainly could be a heightened attention to the ethics of marketing taking place within many organizations. Harmful Products When taking into consideration how a company may be marketing their cause, the marketing of harmful products must be brought to the table. Organizations that market harmful products face strict consequences that come with a product deemed harmful, and must do their best in order to successfully market without running into legal suites or the loss of brand perception. In accordance to the U. S. Overspent, warning labels must be provided on any product that could be deemed harmful (Thompson, n. D. ). Even with these regulations in mind there is still a bit of uncertainty regarding products that could be deemed harmful, but for many reasons have not yet been decided to be harmful. As in many other cases when dealing with isolations, companies may prove themselves trustworthy and ethically sound by expressing the risks involved with their product. Those companies that successfully gain the trust of a consumer are much more likely to avoid legal troubles and maintain a heightened brand perception (Thompson, n. . ). Stealth Marketing As of now, one of the largest leverages that a company may own is the fact that stealth marketing is not under regulation. Stealth marketing “is any marketing strategy that advertises a product to people without them knowing they are being marketed to” (Stealth Marketing, 2013). Also known as “undercover marketing”, stealth marketing is considerably one of the most dangerous yet effective methods of marketing since consumers disregard the fact that they are being marketed too.
Undercover marketing takes place when a business “employs actors who secretly represented the company, giving them opportunities to interact with strangers and promote the product in a non-obvious way’ (Stealth Marketing, 2013). Examples of undercover marketing remain prevalent in our society today, but most individuals are ill equipped to realize what is going on even by the end of the marketing ploy. As of recent, users of the “selfish stick” serves as a perfect example of undercover marketing.
A person may need a picture taken, but then realizes that the perfect picture is only one click away with this innovative product. Thus, buzz marketing about this handless photo-taking tool emerge on the beaches of California, to the towers of New York. The company set out to spread the idea by recruiting tourists traveling the world to take personal photography into their own hands; literally. With the right exposure, the concept has created its own gigantic niche within the photography market. However, not many restrictions prohibit stealth marketing even though it should be deemed unethical.
Such practices that seek to manipulate consumers into believing the information and product reinforcement these paid endorsers are offering them are completely unethical. Conclusion In conclusion, after taking into consideration forms of governance, methods of execution, and ethical and legal behaviors of a business; many would deem some forms of marketing unacceptable. Marketing and its crucial nature in our American society should be under watch due to its persuasive hold on the common consumer. Tools this powerful and considerably life altering cannot be taken lightly.
However, when done correctly and with good intent, ethics and legality should be incorporated by businesses to achieve a peak performance. Companies that wish to operate legally and ethically should be sure to incorporate truth and unswayable audiences. Full disclosure of information and regard for harmful products are what separate companies not only in terms of integrity, but also in the minds of the consumer. References Sunken. (2001). Children and television advertising. Up. 375-393. Scorch, J. (2004). Born o buy: The commercialese child and the new consumer culture.