Advertising is an important tool of promotion. It involves preparation of written or oral messages and their dissemination through paid media for the purpose of making people aware of and favourably inclined towards the product or service produced by the firm. It is an effective means for quick and economical dissemination of information on a 'large scale' to potential customers. The main features of advertising are:-
- It is a non-personal form of presentation as there is no face-to-face direct contact with the customers.
- It is a paid form of communication as the advertiser has to pay for the space or time hired by him for advertising.
- It is done by identified sponsors i.e. the public is informed about the producer or the firm who is advertising its product.
A firm undertakes advertising with the following basic objectives:-
- To inform prospective buyers about the availability of a new product or service in the market.
- To persuade people to buy the product and thus create demand and expand market for it.
- To maintain the sales and market share in the face of intense competition. It also helps in retaining the product in the customer's mind.
- To reach people who are inaccessible by other means of promotion.
- To educate customers about a particular product by explaining its various features and uses.
- To help create and enhance goodwill of a company.
The main types of advertising are :-
- Product advertising :- is designed to improve the sales of new or existing products.
- Institutional advertising :- is aimed at improving the reputation, image or goodwill of the enterprise.
- Constructive advertising :- is aimed at stimulating demand, introducing new products, attracting new customers and encouraging dealers' interest in the product. It includes both product advertising and institutional advertising.
- Competitive advertising :- is designed to convince the consumers that the advertised product is superior to products of similar type. Also called combative advertising, its purpose is to fight competition in the market.
- Destructive advertising :- is negative in nature and its purpose is to spoil the image and goodwill of other businessmen.