The outbreak of the newest social media, new artificial intelligence, and new opportunities reformed the marketing and advertisement landscape towards the industry to conduct its own business. In order to achieve this constant change, many companies use deceptive advertisement in their products to lure people outside their door to buy their products, as their commercial sales increases. It uses an advertisement to appeal the audience emotions, insecurities and ignorance. In this paper, I will be outlined McDonald’s company and Revlon’s go-to makeup as an example of deceptive advertisement and how they make their advertisement so alluring to children, teenagers and adults to come and buy their products.
Secondly, I will convey that this advertisement used a different kind of fallacies to target their audience. Thirdly, I will suggest that not only is deceptive advertising unethical, but it also benefits the company in the long run.
A speech act is the act of communication using verbally or non-verbally to convey premises and conclusion (Groarke & Tindale, 2013, p.
455). It uses compelling music, images and other non-verbal images to lure people into supporting their claims (Groarke & Tindale, 2013, p.148). Furthermore, one most common speech act used in a marketing campaign is advertising. Advertising is an act of communication to grab public attention to one’s product to get more customers; thus, business ethics advertising is defined as a principle govern between one-on-one dealing with its buyer (Moriarty, 2017). Majority of the advertisers sells consists of clothing, whitening products, foods and cars that people want to desire and needed.
Moreover, only advertising can provide their need of information for their desires.
McDonalds is one of the second-largest fast-food chains globally. This company achieves its desired success for using advertisement as a marketing strategy. Looking at the McDonalds advertisement reproduced in Illustration 1.1 – “OVER 99 BILLION SERVED” – was addressed to audience all over the world who are McDonalds customers, those skeptical or reluctant into trying McDonalds food. On the other hand, audience is a member of an argument that shares some set of beliefs and commitments who are inclined to side or opposed a given preposition (Groarke & Tindale, 2013, pp. 19-20). It suggests that people should try their food because of its popular and everyone loves it, which appears a bandwagon fallacy. Bandwagon is a common fallacy based on the assumption that the opinion of the majority is always valid; that is, everyone believes it, so they should too (Wrenn, 2017). This claims that people should go here often because everyone does. Moreover, this advertisement seems to be adequate to its audience because McDonalds company owns two-thirds of the worldwide fast-food chain. Furthermore, one common fallacy observed is the used of fallacy of equivocation. According to Liam Dempsey (2007), “fallacy of equivocation is committed when someone uses a key of word in two or more senses in the same argument depends on the shift of the meaning” (p. 124). The claims on this slogan is so vague that it misleads the society to believe that this company serve 99 billion people. Nevertheless, these claims have no evidence that it is even true cause we do not know if “99 billion served” enjoyed their food and service. For decades, McDonald appears to be ethically active in their society because this company seems to involve with their customer and communities. However, for some reason, the diet that this company offers contributes to different kinds of disease. Overall, McDonald company is misleading their audience by this false advertising.
Also, one commonly used in the advertisement is the false dilemma, “a fallacy that gives they only two choices when, in fact, there are more than two” (Dempsey, 2007, p.123). In the phrase “skin appears poreless, smooth, in multiple shades made for you” targets all types of women with every skin type in Revlon’s go-to makeup. According to Cross, “propaganda is the means of persuasion of tricking people and distracting them to a certain way,” which mean propaganda is used to disguises an issue to mislead people, by means of persuasion (Academicscope, 2018). In Revlon’s go-to makeup as “The Revolution Weightless Foam Foundation” shows that people have two options, its either buy the product and be gorgeous as Emma Stone or do not buy it and look ugly with another foundation. This fallacy shows an appeal to authority fallacy, a fallacy of relying on the opinion of someone who seems to be an expert, but, is not (Groarke & Tindale, 2013, p. 450) In contrary, there are more numerous options available. Rationally thinking, the image of Emma Stone displayed a perfect figure of a woman who is highly respectable, professional and dignified. Looking gorgeous with her matching shade foundation gives confidence to display herself in public. Thus, Emma Stone is a celebrity, and being a celebrity does not make her an expert on topics such as foundation or any make up sets. She was used as a mere figure to attract customers to buy the products, probably by her looks. Nevertheless, this advertisement is compelling to its buyer because it helps women who are anxious and insecure about their face, turning them into different person which is fundamentally fallacious. Kantian claim that deceiving other is disrespectful to them, a use of them as a mere means (Rachels, 1986, p.1). When we think it is right to used them, when in fact it is not. Kant’s claim that humanity should be treated always an end, and never as means only, for analyzing human interactions are the core of commercial transactions. In advertising, people may attempt to deceive, cheat or manipulation consumers to gain an edge success, thus lead to violation of human dignity (Rachels, 1986, p.1). Therefore, company such as McDonald and Revlon use deceptive advertising in a form of persuasion to make people do some wrong to satisfy their desires of needs and wanting something that is not crucial in their life. Furthermore, company benefits in a long run success because of how compelling this advertisement turned out to be to its consumers as they target their weakness.