Objectives of Advertising

In the Promotion Decisions Tutorial, we explained five objectives that may be achieved using promotion. Advertising can address all of these, though at different levels of effectiveness. The objectives of advertising include:

  • Building Product Awareness – The mass communication nature of advertising makes it a particularly attractive promotional option for marketers, who are introducing new products and looking to build market awareness. Additionally, advertising can be used to help support a strategy to reposition a product by creating awareness among a target market to benefits offered by the product that are new or that may not have been previously known.
  • Creating Interest – Advertisements are creative productions with the power to capture customers’ attention. As we will see in Managing the Advertising Campaign Tutorial, the large number of methods and media outlets for presenting an advertisement offers marketers ample ways to create appealing ads intended to excite customer interest.
  • Providing Information – Many forms of advertising expose a targeted market to a message in a brief way and are often not suitable for providing extensive information. However, there are some forms of advertising that can convey a good amount of information. For instance, advertisements sent by direct mail can offer in-depth product information with the inclusion of detailed booklets, links to online videos, and product samples.
  • Stimulating Demand – Advertising is often used as part of a campaign to encourage a target market to make a purchase. While this certainly seems an obvious usage of advertising, in fact, by itself advertising is not the most effective promotional tool to achieve this objective. Instead, advertisements, that on the surface appear to have the objective of stimulating demand, are generally part of a broader promotional strategy that includes other forms of promotion, most notably sales promotion.
  • Reinforcing the Brand – Repeated use of advertising is often required to support a product. Given the number of ads a target market is exposed to on a regular basis, it almost has become a necessity for marketers to advertise consistently as they fear customers will forget about their product if competitors advertise more frequently. Companies operating in markets where competitors spend heavily on advertising must also spend in order to maintain a consistent share-of-voice within the market (i.e., percentage of one marketer’s spending on advertising in relation to total spending).