Positive and Negative Effects of Advertising
Positive Effects
The positive side of advertising is that it makes you aware that a product or service is available. New and improved products are developed all the time and we can't be expected to keep track of these developments ourselves. So its manufacturer helps us in our lack of awareness and tells us: "Our new and improved product is now even better! Go out and buy it!".

This happy message really pleases the consumer in us and if the product is one that we use we are pleased that it has now been improved (again) and is even better. Even though the message is the same as it was the last time it was improved, chances are, if we were using it before, that we will continue to use it and that we react positively to the latest improvement. So far so good. When a good product is improved it does become a better product, right?

The ad will tell us in a variety of ways that it is any or all of the following:

  • better than the competitor's product
  • cheaper than the competitor's product
  • easier to use than the competitor's product
  • has more prestige value than any similar product
  • lasts longer the competitor's product
  • it's made of superior parts or ingredients
  • it's healthier for you
  • it's wholly organic
  • it's stronger, faster acting, larger, shorter etc. etc. and so forth.

So we are grateful for advertisements because they keep us up to date on the improvement of existing products and the creation of new ones. This is all very good.Unfortunately many advertisements, despite rigorous guidelines, rules, laws and consumer magazines and organisations, tell us a product or service is good only to find out after purchase that it is not good at all. And sometimes we get mad because we feel we have been taken for a ride. And this is definitely not good.

Before, in those good old days (when everybody complained), we got to recognize certain brands and products as good quality and we stuck by them. Reputation is important, as we have mentioned before, and when a company sticks to its original success formula we can trust them and continue to use their products or services without having to worry about it too much. And that is good because in our busy modern lives we have plenty to worry about already.

Negative Effects
The negative side of an ad is that it is not usually a neutral and objective statement. The ad is made by the product's manufacturer and that already tells us that it will never be objective. According to the box every product is the best after all.

No one can deny that an unbelievable quantity of bad products are for sale. Depending on the power of the manufacturer it can be blatantly obvious that we are dealing with a bad or substandard product.  But if the manufacturer has a lot of power, the ad is so sophisticated in its execution that, we are wholly convinced with what we are dealing is genuinely great product.

In retrospect, after the sale in other words, we can find out that the ad failed to let us know any or all of the following:

  • it's made of substandard materials
  • it tastes bad
  • it's badly made
  • it's made from leftovers and rejected materials
  • it's made by someone undergoing forced labor
  • it's far too expensive and should cost 10% of what it does because it is made much much cheaper somewhere else
  • some of its ingredients or additives such as preservatives, colorings, etc. have been banned in your country for at least 30 years because of their carcinogenic effects (cancer inducing)
  • there's really nothing in the product that is in the least bit beneficial to your physical or mental health
  • it could be dangerous to your children
  • it's made up of animal byproducts
  • they are destroying a rain forest to produce it
  • it's been designed exclusively to use all those other bits and pieces they would otherwise be stuck with
  • it would kill any insect better than any spray if you would feed it to them instead of eating it yourself
  • it's made from organic materials, not mentioning that those organics are animal byproducts and leftovers, bio-material even an experimental laboratory would label bio-hazard etc. etc. and so forth.

The list is quite endless once you get going the reality of it is quite depressing. The only thing we can do is learn from our failures, i.e., never buy a product or anything else manufactured by that company, or use that service again, until we are absolutely sure it is now really worth our hard earned money and time.