The key to ethical business advertising

July 16, 2010 |   2 minute read

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The key to ethical business advertising

It’s true, business owners are always in sales. If only to present yourself at a business networking event, you often have to promote, or advertise, your business.

The problem? Most people hate advertising. So how to have ethical business advertising?

Mass-targeted ads over the last 20 are often an interruption on what we really want. Advertising has also come under heat for being unethical.
You’ll have seen enough advertising by now. You know most advertising starts with presenting a problem. Letting buyers know what problem your product or service solves is not a bad idea. It's not unethical to let your readers know you can help. After all, you probably like knowing what products could fix a problem you may not even realise you had. Good advertising is helpful.
Just be careful not to use the cheaper version of presenting a problem. For example, don’t introduce your business ad with the notion of pain. You can imagine pin-pointing, or reminding, readers about a headache-causing annoyance--that's just the tip of the ice burg on the array of nasty problems you've probably already been presented with and come to hate yourself.  (Even writing an example makes me feel nauseous!)
Sure, a big promise gets people’s attention, but if there isn’t a big delivery, or they can’t afford it right now, you keep the pain out there banging around in someone's subconscious mind. It's a good way to scare off potential customers.
Instead, try to present your problem with a positive solution. Even if you don’t make the sale right away, at least you’ll develop credibility. And credibility in itself is priceless.
So go ahead and write your ad--especially if you have the best of intentions. If it's taking you ages to write something down, just let us know if we can help.

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