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Understanding Advertising

Understanding Advertising

Understanding Advertising is a vital part of marketing. Given the cut-throat competition existing in the present times, good advertising is inevitable. Today, there are a number of advertisements on TV, newspapers, as billboards on streets etc. Several advertisements come on the radio as well.

Even the rickshaws, buses and taxis carry advertisements on them. Internet today is an inseparable part of our lives. It also has several advertisements popping up on different websites. Now, let’s read further to understand the different aspects of Understanding Advertising.

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Understanding Advertising

Understanding Advertising

An advertisement is a way of marketing a brand, a product or a service. Anything needs to be popularized, is promoted by way of an advertisement. Hence, Understanding Advertising is very necessary. Here are some features of advertisements:

  • Advertisements help in drawing our attention to the product advertised.
  • They bring forth the positive aspects of the product so that people become keen to buy them.

Building Brands

In layman’s terms, the term branding refers to stamping a product with a particular name or sign. The key purpose of an advertisement is building brands. Branding is done with an objective of differentiating one product from the other products in the market.

There are a number of products available in the market. Since, the number is huge, making one’s product stand out in the eyes of the customer, is crucial. This is possible with the help of branding the products.

Example of Branded Pulses

Pulses, also known as ‘daals’ are sold loosely in the market. There are different types of dals such as urad dal, tur dal, moong dal etc. However, these are only the types of the dals and not their brand names. So, when a type of dal is packed and put in a packet by a company, it has to be given a special name. This name has to be really catchy. The naming is done in a manner that the customers do not get confused the particular dal with the dal that is sold loose.

One example of the branded daal is ‘Golden Harvest tur dal’. This naming of the product tur dal with the brand name ‘Golden Harvest’ is an example of branding. This helps us in Understanding Advertising.

Role of Advertising

Now, only branding a product or giving it a name, is definitely not enough. This in itself does nothing to convince the people to buy the product. However, it works to differentiate the product from an unbranded product. But there are a number of brands that are available in the market. This makes it important to differentiate one brand from another. That is where the role of the advertising comes in.

An advertisement is helpful in:

  • Differentiating the product from that of the competitors
  • Convincing people to buy the concerned product

Building Brand Values

Advertisers pay a special attention to ensuring that their brand projects special values. It is because of these values that their brand is given preference over others.

For instance, one brand of dal can be highlighted as ‘being healthy for our kids’; and the other brand can be highlighted as ‘serving guests well’.

Both of these aspects, be it the health of kids or serving guests well is used by the brand to create brand values. Advertisers use the words and visuals to convey these brand values to their customers. With the help of good words and good visuals, a positive image of the product is created in the minds of the people to make the product appealing.

Building Social Values

Advertisements have a certain place in our cultural and social life. We happen to discuss the advertisements we watch/hear or read and also tend to judge people based on the brand products they use. In fact, some products are remembered purely in terms of the words or visuals used in their advertisements.

Influence of Advertisements

It is a general practice that the branded products cost much more than the products that are sold loose/ non-branded ones. This is because, at the cost of the product, the cost of advertising and packaging is already included.

For instance, the Golden Harvest tur dal, that we mentioned above, is manufactured and packaged by Future Agrovet Ltd. As a result of this, this dal is costlier than the daal sold loosely. Since the prices are high, many people cannot afford these branded products.

Advertisements play a critical role in changing the thinking and preferences of the people. Over the years, people will start thinking that the dal, for example, which comes in a sealed packet is much better than the ones sold loose. They will thus be persuaded, to buy only packaged dals. Though, in reality, we know that there is a little difference between branded dal and dals that are sold loose.

Question for you

Q1: Can you explain two ways in which you think advertising affects issues of equality in a democracy?

Sol: The two ways in which advertising affects the concept of equality are as under:

  • Since advertisements use various emotions like caring for the family; for promoting their products; those who cannot afford the branded products feel that they are not able to offer the quality product and the care that the brand products appear to offer.
  • Overlooking important issues: Since advertising focuses on the lives of the rich and the well known it makes us forget the issues of poverty, discrimination, and dignity – the issues that are the essence of the functioning of equality in a democracy.
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