Weasel Words-Sales and Advertising Essay

3176 Words Nov 23rd, 2012 13 Pages
isingWhy Ads Work

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Why Ads Work

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Why Ads Work
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Ads often work without words, they depend entirely on pictures and music or sounds.
Images work to create general "good feelings" about a product or brand. But words work best to steer the final purchase, especially for more expensive items.
How can so many competing products all claim to be "best" or "fastest" or "strongest?"
Many court decisions, helped define the concept of parity that enables ads to use superlatives without proof of superiority. If a category of products are all about the same (at parity), each brand may legally claim to be
"best."

Why Ads Work

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In other words, the courts assume that superlatives such as "best" or “superior," will be disbelieved by the public. But a parity product cannot claim in a specific way to be better than a competitor without proof
Legal precedent protects "puffery" in advertising. Claims such as the following claims need no special proof for advertisers to use:
The perfect gift. The strongest pain relief you can buy without a prescription. The best (insert brand name) you can buy. The (insert brand name of sport drink) that helps you perform at peak levels. No other brand beats the taste of (insert brand name) The best tasting (insert brand name) cheesecake. The biggest (insert product category) sale event ever.
Ironically, the law defends puffery because it assumes educated people can see through it. In other words, the law allows it because it doesn't work. But advertisers use puffery

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