What Are Advertising Ethics? 

advertising ethics

Why Knowing Everything About Advertising Ethics is So Important For Your Digital Marketing Business? 

Advertising Ethics are important because by acting ethically while advertising, your business is responsible for the customer’s needs. 

As a business owner, you need to show the market and especially your customers,  that your business has morals when advertising to them because that makes customers feel like the company cares about what they need, which eventually will create loyalty to your brand and the products that you offer. 

Advertising ethics plays an important role in even the playing field for the customers by giving them the correct information they need, to make a conscious decision on what products to buy and how these products will improve and enhance their lives–whether they need the product or they just want that product.

In this blog we will talk about advertising ethics, and what are advertising ethics, and how to improve them as a business owner, and how advertising practitioners view those advertising ethics. If you are interested enough to know more about advertising ethics keep on reading to know more. 

What Does “Ethics” Mean? 

Ethics is being described as a set of moral principles which govern a person’s behavior or how the activity is conducted. And advertising is considered to be a way of communication between the seller and the buyer through different mediums of communication. 

Thus, Advertising Ethics means, a set of moral principles which governs the way of communication between the seller and the buyer. 

So, we can conclude from this definition that advertising ethics is one of the most important features of digital marketing and in the advertising industry in general. 

Through advertising ethics, your business can get all the benefits that you are looking for as a business owner, and in this blog, we will talk in detail about the principles of advertising ethics that every business should follow. 

Ethical Advertising VS UnEthical Advertising 

As we mentioned above, advertising ethics are a set of moral principles that set boundaries between the seller and the buyer, regarding that definition, we can say that every business nowadays is always looking for a new way to expand its reach base and increase the sales. 

And that could lead to some unethical advertising methods, as companies are looking for creative opportunities to advertise their services or products. 

However, Ethical advertising is about being truthful regarding the products of the service that the business is offering. 

Trying to hide the flaws of the product by not telling the whole truth about the service is considered to be Unethical advertising. 

Unethical advertising is the distortion of a product or a service in some way or the use of subconscious messaging to fit a hidden agenda. This form of advertising uses deceptive ways to manipulate or convince the consumer to buy the product or service just to increase sales.  

Whether you have an in-house marketing team, or you are hiring an outsource digital marketing company, your advertising should have clear intentions and no hidden agendas.

Example For UnEthical Advertising

To set a clear example for unethical advertising, we could not find any better example than what the famous brand Reebok did. 

As a part of the digital marketing campaign for Reebok, it had a headline that said ”Cheat on your girlfriend, not on your workout.”

This promotion was extremely unethical as it promoted, and encouraged deceitful behavior, and as a result the shoe company faced backlash and even a boycott from its customers. 

Why Are Advertising Ethics Important?  

If you reached this far in this blog, you might ask yourself, why advertising ethics is considered to be this important? 

And in this section of the blog, we will try to explain why advertising ethics are important for your business as a business owner, and how important they are for customers. 

As a business owner, if you want to gain your customers’ attention and loyalty, you must provide them with fair knowledge of what you are trying to sell them. 

Talking trustfully about your products and service will create a space of trust between your brand and the customers, which eventually will create a kind of loyalty to your brand or the service that you offer. 

On the other hand, providing the customer with your business mission and vision clear will get you both to meet in a middle ground.

By sharing clearly the vision and mission, you are somehow helping people to understand the thought process behind their decision-making and how the company feels their products or services will be of benefit to people without using false advertising to entice people into buying the product.

To cut the story short, honesty is a very important feature for customers to create trust between them and your brand, and maintaining honesty will come from following the 7 principles of advertising ethics. 

advertising ethics

advertising ethics

What Are the 7 Advertising Ethics? 

Advertising ethics was built upon the following 7 principles which convey how all forms of communication should be done between customers and sellers. Take a look at the following advertising ethics principles. 

Principle 1 

Advertising, public relations, and digital marketing for any business should all share a common objective of truth and high ethical standards towards the customers.

Principle 2 

As a business owner, your digital marketing campaigns should have an obligation to exercise the highest personal ethics in the creation of commercial information to consumers.

Principle 3 

Advertisers and marketers should clearly differentiate between advertising and news and editorial content, both offline and online. 

As customers always get misled and treated unethically, and to avoid that, the business should separate clearly between the paid advertisement and the actual news and updates.

Principle 4 

In digital marketing campaigns, advertisers and marketers should disclose all the material conditions including the payment or receipt of free products. 

Principle 5 

Through advertising, advertisers should pay extra care for the customers that these advertisements are for, to avoid any misunderstanding and misleading. 

Principle 6 

It is completely unethical for an advertiser to use a customer’s personal privacy in marketing communications. 

Principle 7 

Advertisers should discuss privately potential ethical concerns, and members of the team creating ads should be given permission to express internally their ethical concerns.

Sources: Why It’s Important to Have Ethics in Advertising…Especially to Reach Millennials


Eight Principles Of Advertising Ethics