Counterfeiting the Currency of Advertising

This is a corollary to yesterday’s post about research which found that three out of four people believe claims found in advertising are exaggerated.

Words and images are the currency of advertising. The U.S. Government won’t let people counterfeit its currency. But advertising industry professionals seem to have no problem counterfeiting theirs.

When industry professionals exaggerate, make false claims, or misrepresent the capabilities of a product or service, they don’t serve their clients’ best interests or their own.

False advertising may get people to purchase a product or service once. But the inevitable disappointment they feel can ruin the client’s reputation. The purchasers not only feel disappointed in the performance of the product or service, they feel they have been lied to. Trust is lost with the relationship.

False claims and impressions also counterfeit the currency of the industry. They undermine the industry’s credibility and the return that honest advertisers hope to gain from their investment in advertising.

Governments won’t let people counterfeit their currencies. Why do ad industry trade groups not raise a bigger stink about people who devalue their currency?