The legal and ethical considerations of marketing in America
The principles of ethics and legality in the marketing of goods and services by any firm or company in the business world should be an important consideration, which contributes to its success. Marketing strategies of a business is an entity that distinguishes a business from its competitors in any market. If a company has smart marketing strategies it is bound to succeed, so long as they stay within the boundaries of ethics and legality. The issue in most cases boils down as to not whether it would be legal to market a certain commodity such as a drug in other countries; rather would it be ethical to do so? Such questions sometimes challenge marketers in the business world and help in determining if a certain commodity should be marketed or not based on the effect on the consumer .
USA hosts one of the few states in the world that have lenient laws or less strict as compared to U.K. With this type of marketing environment, it favors most business as the lesser the restrictions to marketing, the more practical their ideas can be implemented. USA is one of the countries that protect its producers from the dangers of piracy. This has not only encouraged the citizens to appreciate what their fellow citizens produce, but also maximize on the profits producers make when selling original commodities to consumers.
With time, USA continues to adjust its marketing restrictions to fit different scenarios and circumstances. The most recent adjustment that is to be implemented is the prohibition of marketing tobacco to kids and teens . In this case, it is considered to be both illegal and to extremely unethical for minors to consume tobacco at a young age as it is the cause of respiratory diseases among many people. It is estimated that about 443000 Americans die as a result of smoking per year.
USA prohibits marketing of commodities that contain harmful substances, which affect the health of individuals. These include hard drugs such as Methamphetamine, heroin, Marijuana, or Cocaine. Such drugs are harmful to human health and are highly addictive in nature. The government has tirelessly fought to eradicate drug cartels that supposedly bring the drugs into the country. Investigations have also been carried out to arrest drug lords responsible for the distribution of these hard drugs within USA. Local producers, such as those who own private meth labs, have also been arrested and sentenced to prison. It is, therefore, illegal and unethical to market such commodities in the USA. Any individual found committing such a felony face the harsh consequences stated by the law .
Marketing of banned substances is also considered to be unethical and illegal in the marketing of such commodities. This is usually after several tests being carried out on goods to determine its effect on human health both long-term and short-term. It is, therefore, legal to market commodities in USA that are not harmful or good for human health, so as to ensure a healthy population. Business marketing non-harmful commodities in the market is fair upholds the safety of the citizens, therefore, remaining within acceptable behaviors in the setting.
Marketing strategies that tarnish the image of rival companies is considered illegal and unethical in USA. This is considered to be unhealthy competition among different companies as they each try to win over customers using unlawful means. Tarnishing of the image of a company includes; falsifying information about other company related products, or claiming that they are harmful to human health . A healthy business environment is one where companies thrive on hard work and healthy competition. That would be the only decent and sure way of assessing the performance of a business and economy. It would, therefore, be ethical and legal if the marketing strategies applied by any business are purely on the basis of honesty and integrity to its competitors.
Marketing strategies that are offensive in terms of racial discrimination and segregation is illegal and unethical in USA. All businesses should fully comprehend that each citizen within any jurisdiction has equal and fair rights to access it commodities and give feedback at their will. It would, therefore, be unethical for a business to use marketing strategies that offend a certain race whether directly or indirectly. This would be to maintain a healthy producer-customer relationship for the benefit of both. A company would be foolish to make assumptions that as long as it is popular among a certain race it would thrive and make enormous profits. A company should understand that its future is determined by the level of acceptance by the general community. It should, therefore, strategize methods that favor each individual making them feel at home when purchasing certain commodities .
Marketing techniques considered to be obscene or pornographic in nature is prohibited in the USA as it is not ethical and morally accepted to all. Some individuals consider pornography to be educational while others consider it to be offensive. It is therefore advisable for a company to keep in mind the kind of adverts they air respecting people’s opinions at all costs. A company should, therefore, go the extra mile to ensure its consumers are satisfied by what it produces. This includes editing material previously aired and is considered to be offensive in terms of the mages displayed or verbal content. It is ethical to keep in mind that the consumer market is comprised of individuals of different ages. It would be ethical for a company to respect that all parents want to bring up their children in environments free of immoral acts starting from what their children view on television or online ..
USA prohibits any marketing strategies that deceive general public in terms of how good it is. All companies must be honest in terms of the goods and services it advertising. It would be unethical for a business to deceive the public in terms of a commodity it sells such as a company claiming that a certain commodity it sells e.g. such as a mass gainer is purely organic in its constituents . The company is fully aware that the mass gainer being advertised is generally made up of hundreds of chemicals, and the organic percentage of the drug is very little. This would be a danger to many as some consumers might opt to try the commodity having confidence it would not affect them in any negative way. Such a consumer may react to a certain chemical that not mentioned in the ingredients section of the commodity.
In conclusion, it is important for any marketer to assess and understand any cultural, political, and social factors that affect the demand and supply of their commodities. For developed countries such as USA that has a history terrorism attacks, marketers in this environment have grown to deal specifically with activities of demand and supply that terrorist aim to destroy. This due to countries such as USA is prone to unexpected terrorist attack. Marketers must, therefore, have devised few ways of distributing and logistic avenues in the event of an attack. This is an effort to communicate to the consumer about the position of the company to perform its usual tasks at normal flexibility. It is ethical for all marketers around the world to weigh different options as they try to market their goods keeping in mind the laws and regulations imposed. USA is a country founded upon integrity and good corporate governance. Those are among the few issues that have seen the country become successful over the past decades.
Carrigan, M., Marinova, S., & Szmigin, I. (2005). Ethics and international marketing : research background and challenges. Bradford, England: Emerald Group Publishing.
Dawson, M. (2003). The consumer trap : big business marketing in American life. Urbana [u.a.] : University of Illinois Press.
Paul, J., & Kapoor, R. (2008). International marketing : text and cases. New Delhi: Tata McGraw-Hill.