Advertisements: Advantages and Disadvantages

756 Words Oct 9th, 2009 4 Pages
Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of advertisements.

Advertising is a communication whose purpose is to inform potential customers about various products and services and how to obtain and use them. Advertising is a multi-billion dollar business and its messages are conveyed to the farthest places on Earth. It uses every major medium to deliver these messages including television, movies, newspapers, radio, magazines, video games, the internet and billboards. Most advertisements are often placed by an advertising agency on behalf of a company. An advertisement is a product and like every other product in the world, it has its pros and cons.

Advertisements are used to sell products. Businesses advertise their products to
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This ability of advertisements to make people do something can also be a disadvantage. Advertisements can sometimes be so persuasive as to make the viewers buy something that they may not actually need or may in fact be harmful to them. They achieve this by creating false impressions about their products. A certain cigarette advertisement for example, may show that people who smoke a certain brand of cigarette are more successful than others. This not only creates a false impression upon the viewers about success but also encourages them to smoke. This creation of false impressions is very common in advertising. In fact, this creation of false impressions is what makes advertisements so influential in shaping a consumer.

Advertisements have also been known to play to certain stereotypes. They have, on occasions, downplayed people with certain physical attributes. Only ‘beautiful’ people are employed to appear in advertisements for various products. Advertisement agencies hardly ever employ people of ‘average beauty’. Food commercials never have malnourished people. Energy drink advertisements always have athletic models taking part in sports. The Marlboro Man is always a ‘ruggedly handsome cowboy’. All these advertisements play to various stereotypes. These types of advertisement create the impression that being normal and ordinary isn’t good enough.

Another disadvantage of advertisement is the sheer
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