2 Give Advantages Of A Language With Built-In Exception Handling Recognizing Marketing Deception (Fraud?) Before Becoming a Victim

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Recognizing Marketing Deception (Fraud?) Before Becoming a Victim

Lately, I’ve been hearing a certain radio ad bombarding the metro-NYC news station that I love to listen to. The reason I love this station is simple: it’s smart, it’s interesting, and it airs the John Sterling/Susan Waldman Yankee commentary during games of the season.

However, this particular radio ad seems so full of misleading marketing language that I bristle every time it plays. Not only does it give my profession a bad reputation, but it can deceive thousands of naive consumers to sign up and become victims of what they almost consider fraud. But, too cunningly manipulative for that, he probably can’t even be found guilty of deception since every statement made is true. But it is certainly misleading to unsuspecting listeners to interpret these “true” statements as a good reason to respond to the ad and commit to the advertised service, only to later discover the naivety of their gullible decision to to make.

Let me explain: The ad starts out as an ad in an authoritative tone that says it can save American car owners thousands of dollars in car repair bills. As long as you have less than 200,000 miles on your car (like most people), you’ll never have to pay for a car repair bill out of pocket again! The advertiser will pay it for you. If you are sick and tired of spending your hard earned money on car repairs, call to see if you qualify! (This puts the burden on you to prove that you are one of the owners of eligible cars with less than 200,000 miles who can take advantage of this advertising trickery to trick you into buying.)

You can also maintain your own mechanic or your own auto repair service and have the advertiser pay the bills for you. This includes all the most advanced auto tech repairs you could ever need! (Again, they say this to throw the course off, so think about what kind of repairs your car may need now or in the future and if you qualify.) So far, everything they’ve said with the possible exception of “save you. thousands of dollars” was true. That is until you read between the lines.

No, you will not spend your hard earned money on the car repair bill. Instead, you have to spend your hard earned money to pay a fee to represent you and pay your car repair bill for you. And while they claim that you can save a lot of money, you can get paid more by making them middlemen. After all, they are in business to make money. They won’t do this for nothing. And how can they pay for these expensive radio ads on such a powerful New York station? Only through responses from hundreds of unsuspecting customers signing up en masse.

So what comes out of it? Maybe a lot of problems if you sign a contract, and fail to pay their tax, and who knows what else! They probably make it look like they are providing you with great service, guaranteeing that they will pay for your car repair in your old clunker (with less than 200,000 miles) allowing you to continue driving and hopefully going to work (if you have always. a job) while they wait for you to cover the bill (perhaps late) with interest!

I’m guessing about all the finer details, but you can see the risks I’ve pointed out. I remember hearing about a similar fraudulent attempt made by another auto payment company in the last couple of years that was distributed by mail. I later received a series of telemarketing calls about it. Now, I heard this ad for a different company on the radio. Could it be the same organization just operating under a different name? And ironically, as much as I recognized it, I suddenly didn’t hear it anymore, which may also be part of its formula: make it run for a while to accumulate new customers and then disappear into thin air, so to speak so that. These are the types of questions I ask, as I am naturally suspicious of marketing claims that raise these types of red flags.

The concept is very similar to the service offered by a credit card: you pay with plastic and then you pay the credit card company with interest for its generosity that allows you to pay over time. But we all know the enormous risk involved, as a nation and a world, with intractable economic problems everywhere you look! If you’re one of the unfortunate people who lost the privilege of using any or all of your credit cards, this car repair payment service ad may sound pretty appealing, especially if old Bertha makes horrible noises and puts in danger your trip. But I urge you to tread carefully and bring a big stick.

So what exactly are the laws regarding misleading advertising, anyway? According to the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) Office of Consumer Protection, there are three attributes that determine whether an ad is false or unfair:

1. If it offends public policy;

2. If it is immoral, immoral, oppressive, or unscrupulous; or,

3. if it substantially injures consumers.

This last point is considered the most important in weighing whether the advertisement is false or unfair, with the prejudice of the customer normally based on the loss of money due to a purchase that would never have been made if the advertisement was not wasn’t cheating in the first place. False statements are determined to be false on face value; or if they are implicitly false. In my opinion, the radio ad above may be making a blatantly false claim saying that you can save huge amounts of money if you use their service. However, with intelligent interpretation, that statement could be considered true if you attribute your savings to be from payments made directly to auto repair vendors.

If you are not paying your mechanic directly for the repair of your car, you will essentially save that money. However, you need to use that “saved” money to pay the car repair company that will pay your mechanic for you, regardless of how deceptively they advertise their service. Does this sound ethical to you? Also, I believe that the ad says “can save” as opposed to “will save you” which implies that there may be other conditions involved that you must fulfill to ensure that its claim can deliver as stated.

Based on the complaints the FTC receives, there are some consistent themes that emerge, most often about undisclosed costs and conditions. Responsible radio advertisers avoid legal problems by simply adding a statement such as “Restrictions may apply,” while some overzealous advertisers devote a good percentage of radio ad time to explaining in detail a lengthy disclosure of disclosures provided to a deformation speed that makes it virtually. impossible to understand what is being said. Depending on the space available, the FTC advises advertisers using visual media to disclose details “clearly and conspicuously.” If space is limited, perhaps the 3-word disclaimer mentioned earlier may suffice, but lowercase type and deliberately ambiguous terminology is frowned upon.

What the FTC allows or regulates seems to be a bit of a gray area with decisions depending on whether the ad is national or regional; if it represents an industry regulated by another branch of government (such as airlines, banks, insurance companies, common carriers and companies that sell securities and commodities); or whether it can be resolved by another, more local agency such as the Better Business Bureau. As previously stated, of most vital importance to the FTC appears to be issues involving consumer injury, whether for “health, safety or wallet.”

Penalties for non-compliance can be stiff ranging from a simple “cease and desist” order which, if not obeyed correctly, escalates to a sum of $16,000 per day for further infringements; to fines that reach millions of dollars when necessary, sometimes demanding refunds to consumers affected by the offensive ad; to post new ads and contact buyers to correct misleading information earlier.

If an ad has hurt you in some way because of deceptive practices, you have the right to complain to the FTC and contact an attorney. If the offending ad is broad enough, your case may be considered suitable for a class action suit, which involves many actors besides yourself. Be aware, however, that regardless of how noble your lawyers’ representation may seem in these cases, it is usually the lawyers who benefit the most in class action suits.

What if you think a competitor’s ad is misleading? You have a few options, some or all of which you can pursue:

1. You can contact a lawyer to find out if you owe them unfair competition by making misleading claims in ads.

2. You can submit a complaint to the National Advertising Division (NAD) of the Council of Better Business Bureaus, which investigates and resolves such disputes on a national and regional basis.

3. If the ad is local, you can contact your local Better Business Bureau to file a complaint.

4. You can contact the print or broadcast medium where the ad ran to announce your suspicion about the deceptive nature of the ad.

5. You can contact the Office of the Attorney General of your state or your city, county, or state Office of Consumer Affairs to report the problem.

6. Finally, you can contact the Federal Trade Commission, Consumer Response Center, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20580; or call: 1-877-FTC-HELP toll free.

As a word of advice from a marketing expert, if you are a publicist who uses techniques of vagueness, or worse, duplicity, to camouflage the full truth of your message, keep this in mind:

“The bitterness of bad quality lingers long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten.” – Benjamin Franklin

Translation: An unhappy customer will share their unpleasant experience not only with their friends and family, but also spread the bad word about you on blogs, forums and chat rooms, giving your company a negative reputation that he will never be able to live. today’s universe dominated by Google. If your advertising misdeed was not intentional, it will be much less expensive to try to win back the loyalty of a dissatisfied customer with a valid complaint than to try to recover the devastating income of his dissatisfaction.

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