Advertising is defined as any "paid-for method of promotion". Advertising is the main form of "above the line promotion".
Advertising presents or promotes the product to the target audience through a variety of media such as TV, radio, cinema, online, social media and magazines to encourage them to buy.
The problem with advertising is that consumers are bombarded with advertising messages every day.
How can a business cut through the advertising noise and get a message across effectively? And how can a business measure the effectiveness of an advertising campaign. It is often said that businesses waste half their advertising spend – the problem is that they don't know which half!
When deciding which type of advertising to use – known as an advertising medium – a business needs to consider the following factors:
Advertising can also be split into two main types:
Sometimes a business will employ an advertising agency to deal with its needs. An agency plans, organises and produces advertising campaigns for other businesses. The advantage of an agency managing the campaign is that it has the expertise a business may not have, e.g. copywriters, designers and media buyers.
Businesses need to be fully aware of the laws that govern advertising. The main law is the Trade Descriptions Act – goods advertised for sale must be as they are described. Also the advertising industry has its own Code of Practice, and is regulated by the Advertising Standards Authority where complaints about the nature of advertising can be dealt with.
The main advantages and disadvantages of advertising as method of promotion are summarised below: