Advertising Ethics Case 19

What Should Lisa Counsel Her Client to do?

Lisa should ask her client to give her more time to evaluate thesituation before making a good decision. Then she should consult withfellow employees on the next course of action. However, since it isclear that group decisions are often conservative, Lisa should onlytake the advice of her colleagues but not their final decision. Inthe meantime, she can keep assuring the client to be calm aseverything will be okay because the results of the incident could goeither way. Later after analyzing the whole situation in deepthought, she will communicate the next course of action to theclient.

What is the most ethical course of Action?

Lisa should discontinue the contract with Brittney Spice because heractions contravene the ideals that the client’s business standsfor. It would be unethical to take advantage of Brittney’s newfoundpublicity to coerce young girls into buying the product. Even then,such a strategy will only work in the duration that Brittney will beon the news. A good advertiser should look for a long-term strategyto advance the objectives of his client rather than ride with thewave. Lisa should disregard the cliché that no publicity is badpublicity. Contrary to the common notion, the society still holds onthe traditional moral standards- or at least it pretends to.

Is the Ethical course of action the best business strategy?

Cancelling the deal with Brittney will be the best business strategybecause it focuses on the long term. Her behavior would have angeredsome of the client’s loyal customers and they would have opted todistance themselves from the beauty product. Some may argue that thescandal would have brought more consumers on board. However, thatbrand of consumers is not usually loyal. As soon as Brittney’sscandal fizzes out, they will forget the product all together. Ofwhat good is a strategy that seeks to increase the amount of sales inthe short term but ruin the image of the client in the end?

Is this an advertising Issue, legal issue, or both?

The issue is both advertising and legal. In terms of advertisingissues, the advertiser has yet again found herself in the troublebecause of using celebrities who do not mind their image. Beforeawarding Brittney the contract, she was well behaved and she did notportray any signs of incarceration in the near future. However,afterwards she has turned into someone else. From a legalperspective, Brittney has violated her terms of the agreement withthe advertiser and therefore her contract should be revoked. Shecannot sue the advertiser because the contract was based on herpublicity, excluding the bad publicity she had attracted in therecent times.

How would you change a spokesperson without damaging the image ofthe Brand?

Hit music changes every day and a particular group of clientele doesnot have a single favorite celebrity. It advertiser will look forother celebrities who have hit music that falls in the same genre asthat of Brittney. In addition, the advertiser will ensure that thetarget market loves the new celebrity choice as much as they did withBrittney Spice. The changes in the spokesperson will do little todamage the brand because homogeneity reigns in the American musicindustry the lingo, mannerisms, music, and fashion sense, cut acrossthe board. An outsider would think that most of the artists grew upin the same neighborhood. Therefore, finding a spokesperson who actslike Brittney’s shadow will not be hard.