Misleading advertising, how not to fall into the trap?

We have all fallen into the trap of misleading advertising. And the fact is that it is designed in such a way that almost no one can escape from its clutches.

In this article we want to tell you not only what misleading advertising is, but also a couple of examples that will help you to recognize it immediately.

Misleading advertising, how not to fall into the trap
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Table of Contents

What is misleading advertising?

When we talk about misleading advertising, we are referring to that which, in the rush to sell more, misrepresents or falsifies information, usually promising incomparable aspects. 

Maybe you have heard of that product that was launched to the market touting unique features, when in fact it has the same features as any other product of its kind in the market. Leaving aside the fact that advertising has an informative purpose, no matter how simplified it is. 

What people expect to know when paying attention to any type of advertising is what the product or service is, what are the uses that can be given to it, or the advantages that it can offer us as consumers, how it could benefit us in comparison to others, among other points. 

The origin of misleading advertising could be seen in the need that some people have to take advertising not from an informative point of view, but from wanting to convince the consumer to opt for them, without even worrying about educating them about their product or service.
This is a completely erroneous position, but many have been using it for many years with the intention of justifying the exaggerations, or lies, that are experienced in their campaigns. Something that, in reality, has no justification, or need. 

Many suppliers even hide behind the thought that users do not necessarily need to receive all the right and truthful information about a product or service. So they feel free to modify it as much as possible to try to make it just “a little more attractive”. This is not true.

A car ad on the side of a building says:It’s A Yes Brainer.
Workers at advert agency

Why should companies not use these tactics?

We understand that, when we are making an advertising campaign to launch our product or service to the public, we want to put together a plan that really catapults it into the minds of all our target audience in the shortest possible time.
However, we must be aware that it is one thing to highlight the qualities of our product or service, and quite another to exaggerate them, or lie, because it sounds attractive when we hear it in the sentence. But it leaves many gaps to the consumer that are guaranteed in advertising.

Why companies should not use misleading advertising, starting with the fact that they may suffer penalties, which in itself would bring them many problems in terms of legal issues, not to mention the case that it becomes popular and ends up damaging their image. 

The impact that can be caused by a fine is great. Mainly you will see the damage in sales, which will be affected in such a way that they will decrease and even create losses for the supplier, which is something that no one really wants for their business, company, or enterprise. 

On the other hand, you have to keep in mind the issue of credibility, trust and prestige. You may not think that these aspects are very important at first, but if you want to do more than a single hit to the market, you will have to worry a lot about these three points.

And think that you did a misleading advertising campaign that went so well that you were not discovered until you had tripled your investment. But have you ever wondered who will buy the next product you bring to market? Your life as a supplier will be over.

Examples of misleading advertising

We’ll give you a couple of examples of widespread misleading advertising based on the fraudulent campaigns that are most commonly seen in the marketplace. 

Don’t feel bad if you’ve fallen for one, after all, they are designed to try to manipulate even the brightest minds:

Those who lie...

It is when the supplier is responsible for providing as true information, a lot of data that is false, or that really can not be verified.
As a good example of this case are all the promises we see on the air to lose weight in a magical way, which is common within the dietary supplement market. 

In this case we know of fines for misleading advertising campaigns for “therapeutic” purposes where they have used phrases such as “helps weight loss”, “with this you can correct the posture of your body”, among many other benefits that are not true.

Those who exaggerate...

Another example of misleading advertising has to do with overemphasizing some of the features that the product does have, so that the final information that is delivered to the user ends up being classified as false. 

As an example of this point we could take a lot of advertising photos that come out daily, where they exaggerate data such as the size of the product. 

In this sense, the hamburgers of the main fast food chains take the first place, or have you ever had one as appetizing as the one in the image?

Advertising on the basis of benefits graciously granted by the supplier, which is a legal obligation...

In these cases, the supplier makes the consumer believe that he is offering some “extra” benefit or service that he will only give him of his own free will, when in fact he is mentioning an obligation imposed by law. 

In these cases of misleading advertising we usually find with cell phone companies, where they sell you the possibility of migrating to another company, or to return a product that has been purchased remotely.

References
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