Advantages and Disadvantages of Advertising

Advantages of Advertising

There are a number of reasons marketers are attracted to advertising as a method for promoting their products. These advantages include:

  • Quickly Reach a Large Audience – Advertising not only has the potential to reach a sizeable audience, it can do so in a very short period of time (e.g., TV ad watched by millions of potential customers)
  • Helps in Gaining Product Distribution – For consumer goods marketers, the inclusion of advertising within a marketing plan may be a convincing factor in gaining the support of resellers (e.g., wholesalers, retailers).
  • Provides Effective Targeting and Tracking – Newer approaches to advertising offer marketers highly effective methods for targeting customers and also tracking their response.
  • May Reach Customers at Different Times – With the rise of social media and video sharing sites (e.g, YouTube), advertisements are not restricted to being delivered through a single media outlet (e.g., TV ad only) or only at a specific time (e.g., single showing of ad during a television program). This is because customers can still be exposed to an ad even though it is not in the media outlet where it was originally presented.
  • Effective When Addressing Certain Issues – Advertising is often the best promotional method for responding to serious or sensitive issues, such as addressing a major catastrophe.
Disadvantages of Advertising

While advertising is often hailed as the best way to promote a product, it does come with several negative issues. These disadvantages include:

  • Can Be Highly Expensive – Some forms of advertising are extremely expensive to create and distribute; consequently, these may not be a viable option for many businesses, especially smaller marketers.
  • Number of Exposures Needed to Reach Customers is Increasing – Due to the large number of advertisements customers experience every day, the number of exposures to an advertiser’s message (i.e., see or hear an ad) that are needed before the message is fully comprehended by the target market appears to be increasing.
  • Often Requires Hiring Creative People – To be effective with advertising often requires creative skills that may not be the forte of many smaller marketers, thus requiring they spend money hiring or outsourcing the creative process if they want to produce effective advertisements.
  • Increase in Customer Avoidance to Ads – Because of the constant onslaught of advertising across numerous outlets, many customers have taken a negative view and intentionally try to avoid exposure to ads (e.g., use a digital video recorder to skip ads).
  • Potential Environmental Issues – Some forms of advertising have raised environmental concerns (e.g., ads on car windshields become loose increasing trash found in public spaces).
  • Increase in People Sharing Dislike of Ads – People exposed to ads they dislike are more likely to share their displeasure with a larger group (e.g., on social media).