The ethics of advertising consists of set principles and guidelines that should govern the manner in which the buyer and the seller communicate and negotiate to a closing a deal. Business is a profit making activity, the seller and the buyer completes the cycle of the firm. Therefore there should exist principles that govern this activity (Sasu, Pravat & Luca 2015).
The case study on the ethics of advertising highlights some of the factors that paint an unfortunate image on the term marketing.it is important to understand that marketing involves all the activities that are conducted to ensure that the product is made known to the potential target customers. It is because of marketing that the business of selling and buying takes place. In regards to marketing, therefore, the same ethics of advertising should be applied, since advertising is one of promotion tool in marketing. The case presents a form of marketing that is not ethical and depicts the downside of marketing. It draws the kind of marketing that takes advantage of clients lack of knowledge on how to do business and invest their income. For this case, a Christian would term it as an evil act. However, lets look at marketing in a positive perspective.
Christian View on Marketing
Marketing is not evil, in fact, marketing is the activity done to make profits through passing information and communicating with prospects. People involved in marketing will either paint marketing as evil or not, depending on how they stick to the ethics of advertising. Jane having spent time working with Martha was able to analyze the values of Martha while doing her job. Jane finds it difficult to relate what Martha was doing to the ethics of advertising. Even though Martha was seen to be the best performer in the company, it took Jane by surprise to find out how Unethical Martha was when dealing with her clients. The three scenarios Jane encountered Martha dealing with customers in a way, depicts the evil side of marketing.at some point Jane describes Martha as arrogant and does not care what she says, she even loses clients in regards to her actions and thoughts. According to Jane, it was clear that Martha masterminded customers in one way or another, judging by the scenario of Mrs. Monmore who was retired and wanted to invest in shares, it is clear that Martha took advantage of the fact that Monmore had little knowledge on investing in stocks, since Martha had a status to maintain, she convinced the lady inappropriately.
Looking at Marthas actions in a Christian perspective, it is evident that she is doing evil by taking advantage of clients. She is, in fact, tarnishing the image of marketing. The Christian view on how to deal with customers rebukes taking advantage of them. It advocates for clean deals, and by the term clean, it involves a situation whereby the client and the marketer are both in agreement, and each party is satisfied. This is where the marketer is willing to take the customer through every step of the deal and makes sure that the client has time to either accept or reject the deal. It does not involve forcing or trying to sugar coat the deal so as to look good to the client only to benefit.
Martha is, therefore, doing a dirty deal to help and to retain the status of being the best performer. Even Jane reached a point where she could no longer handle the actions of Martha, and she says this one is really pushing the limit, this was when Martha had the details of a client faked to suit the business deal that was restricted to Alberta. When such scenarios happen to a Christian, it goes without saying that marketing will be considered evil, the question remains, how will the Christians get information about a product or service without having to go through marketing? It is important to ensure that a marketer is well equipped with ethics of advertising so as to carry out the marketing practice ethically.
The Christian view on marketing as evil, therefore, subjects some products or service to avoidance. The case of Martha subjects the business of investing in shares into avoidance. Yes, some goods and service should be avoided so that the marketer will not account for the outcome. For example; some products and services that deal with investing should be left to the hands of the company to deal with how information will be availed to clients. A marketer should not come in between to convince; rather the client should seek information from the company and decide whether or not to enter into the business deal without having to be convinced. In this way, there will be ethics, because the client will be satisfied with the decision they make and the marketer will not be responsible if the deal backfires due to inappropriate application of ethics. Also, some products and services tempt the marketer to go unethical so that they can gain, especially the products and services that the marketer is paid in the form of commission.
Sasu, C., Pravat, G. C., & Luca, F. A. (2015). ETHICS AND ADVERTISING. SEA: Practical Application of Science, 3(1).
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