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      12.01.2001 18:20
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      When hitting the shops wanting to buy clothes be aware of Benetton. Some of the clothes they sell may look nice but what do you think about the company. If you think they are great and you enjoy shopping there do you honestly know anything about the company? I wasn't aware of Benettons strategies until recently after studying marketing. If you don't know about Benettons advertising read on and you will be disgusted. AIDS, DEATH, CRUELTY TO ANIMALS, RACISM, FEMINISM Are just some of the topics Benetton have talked about, and offended people. In 1989, Benetton embarked on an advertising strategy to sell jumpers on the back of conscience-provoking images. They are well known for advertising using shocking images. Benetton claims the ads are part of a strategy to provoke debate about social issues from institutionalised violence to racism and discrimination. Initially Benetton used pictures of children from different countries wearing Benetton clothes, but subsequently there advertising became more controversial. In 1991 Benetton released an advert with two children, one white and one black. The white girl was depicted as an angel with blonde curls, and the black as a devil with black horns. Many complaints were sent to the ASA, some via the Commission for Racial Equality. The ASA upheld the complaint on the grounds that it was likely to cause widespread offence. This is not Benettons only advert that raised controversy. Others included a blood-smeared newborn baby, complete with its umbilical cord, a dying aids victim, a priest and nun snogging, a bird covered in oil and the bloodstained clothes of a dead Croat soldier. The ASA banned all of these except the bird covered in oil. With these adverts, Benetton are not actually advertising the clothes, they are showing the image with their logo underneath. In Benettons advertising campaign literature from 1992 the following was expressed. Among the various m eans available to achieve the brand recognition that every company must have, we at Benetton believe our strategy for communication to be more effective for the company and more useful to society than would be yet another series of ads showing pretty girls wearing pretty clothes. People want to see the clothes in adverts to see what they look like. If customers like this look they will then buy the clothes. Most advertising campaigns that are deemed unethical usually arise through the company showing deceptive advertising. Benetton are not doing this. They are not advertising their products at lower prices than they are or they are not saying their products do something they don't. Most of Benettons adverts are honest, true and even legal. This is why it is hard to say whether Benetton are behaving unethical. Surely though they are acting crude showing such disturbing pictures. Are there adverts really decent? In 1995 Benetton pointed out that their advertising campaigns have not affected sales. They also point out that they never intended to increase or decrease their sales. This doesn't seem to make sense as the majority of companies who spend thousands; maybe even millions on advertising expect a positive outcome. They expect to make the public more aware of their products and increase sales. There is no doubt Benettons adverts made the public more aware of the company but for many people it made them think twice about actually shopping at Benetton. I think it is disgusting that companies should be able to advertise images like Benetton in relation to clothes. They are the type of adverts that should only be shown to adults. If a child sees for example the first advert I mentioned with the two children, it is going to raise racial issues. Many children will grow up thinking the blacks are devils. Benetton are trying to put ideas into people's heads and cause widespread offence. This is certainly not decent t herefore it is a case of unethical marketing. Benetton have not stopped behaving in this way. On their web site they have interviews with Americans on death row. They are not just insulting the public showing us pictures of these murderers but they are insulting the victim's family. If your child had been murdered would you want a company to stick pictures of their killers on adverts. I doubt it very much. I am not saying the quality of the clothes are poor but why don't they advertise these instead of offending people. Please think twice when walking down the high street and instead of going in Benetton walk straight past.

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