Deceptive advertising often happens within industry thus It is often debated whether deceptive advertising is been practiced in the telecoms industry in Nigeria. This research tries to explore whether the Nigerian telecoms industry utilizes strategic deceptive methods to beat competition for increased customer acquisition and retention or elsewhere. This analysis offers originality through its scrutiny into and interpretation of the particular phenomenon. The backdrop of study is mentioned and a books review on determining deceptive advertising along with various deception practices is elaborated on as argued by various analysts. The strategy is structured showing a qualitative method; assortment of data is done through interviews with customers and marketers as the research findings pointed out a few deception practices present in the Nigerian Telecommunication ad campaign that have been strategically used. From this, implications and propositions for future research are attracted.
Deception in reality is a far more vital subject in marketing and consumer research than is shown is present books. After much understanding into different but limited writings on deception in humanities, cultural sciences, marketing etc, this research came about "The usage of tactical deception in telecommunication advertisement promotions in Nigeria". Deception in advertising is described as a company's misrepresentation to customers on the features of the merchandise or service marketed thus the anticipated utility from making use of the service or product (Nagler, 1993). Government Trade Commission's (FTC) plan states an advert is seen as "deceptive" when there is an omission, representation, practice or action organized by the organization that is prone to deceive a customer. (FTC, 1984).
Hence, Successful advertising is however almost always persuasive advertising, persuasion is therefore defined as the method of attempting to change or modify the significant values, values, activities and wants of consumers, communal life is occupied by unconscious and mindful, strong or substantial shots at persuasion (John O'Shaughnessy et al, 2004). In a competitive market those who persuade consumers best are those with a higher probability to earn. Persuasion is very essential even in situations where competition is hopeless.
This research aspires to explore the proper use of deception in telecommunications advert campaigns, as a significant technique for persuasion in a very competitive environment like Nigeria. This research has preferred telecommunication advert campaigns as test of the analysis as it is said or believed to engage in a whole lot of marketing communications, especially Television set and Print advertising. Nigeria has been named the largest telecom market in all of Africa in the past years; its telecom sector is experiencing rapid change consequently of explosive development and quick infrastructure expansions. The telecom sector Liberalization along with augmented competition among providers have fetched significantly large benefits to the customers in terms of reduced membership rates and heightened choice. However, the Nigerian Government is putting in all work to convert or modify the country's overall economy into an economy that is knowledge based (RNCOS, 2012).
Currently, MTN, Airtel, MTEL, Etisalat and Globacom Limited lead the GSM industry (Tella et al, 2007). Matching to (NCC, 2012 ), MTN supports over 46% of the market share with 41, 641, 089 clients while Globacom keeps over 22% of the marketplace share with about 19, 886, 014 customers also Airtel supports 20% of the marketplace share with 18, 028, 385 subscribers while Etisalat supports 12% of the marketplace tell 10, 752, 230 subscribers. This makes MTN the main leader and then Globacom the next leader.
Telecom advertising is a provisional section of the marketing procedure that is employed to promote sales by triggering excitement and granting various bonuses to customer, in so doing persuading the clients to make a intensifying decision. Advertising and campaigns are the main methods utilized in providing telecom services to consumers in Nigeria. Advertising offers justification to work with the services provided by something operator whereas the sales deals give incentives which are short-term for the customers or subscribers to take on the services available (Ogungbe, 2011).
Telecom promotional advertising campaign is often put together to persuade consumers that the merchandise and services provided by the service operators are necessary for his or her satisfaction. Marketers try to convince consumers/users by presenting draws, stringing to the go up of lucky winners of numerous gift items like power generators, refrigerators, vehicles, television packages, recharge cards, mobile phones and cash honours. These are the sort of incentives Nigerians look forward to owning; therefore a lot of consumers participate in the pull which considerably increases the service operators or providers deal. Consequently, the Telecom sales purpose is to generally found, exactly like other sales offers, is to rise above the real sales quota (Ogungbe, 2011).
Telecom sales deals function immediately with advertising which really is a major part of marketing. It however includes a large range of techniques which includes special price decrease, (Glo to Glo telephone calls), tournaments (projections in the course of a basketball match), game titles, rebates, premiums, gifts and lotteries etc. The promotional emails are generally approved across to consumers in a persuasive and convincing style and words via texts, newspapers, tv set and radio (Ogungbe, 2011).
Deception in advertising has been of immense concern for a lot of policy designers and consumers. As soon as customers trust an advert to be factual when it is in fact fake, customers may be damage (Attas, 1999). Customers like their idea to be factual of course, if a person is persuaded by an advert, then your customer might be thinking about buying the product promoted or enter for the promotion promoted. Possibly more customers will choose the product scheduled to deceptive advert claims given that they trust it to be of better value i. e the clients tend to give more than the real price for the product. (Attas, 1999). In addition, the company trades even more products at the standard price. This reasoning tries to propose that companies are tightly crafting and posting uncertain, deceitful advertisings; and customers are purchasing products and joining promotions trusting these companies deception; therefore companies are attaining a great deal of earnings at the expense of any deceived populace. Which means, some companies many have executed a strategy designed to mislead customers into trusting a service or product is more attractive than what it actually is just for the benefit for increased sales (Attas, 1999).
To analyze the likely occurrence of deceptive qualities in telecommunication advert campaign in Nigeria for the only real reason for persuasion to bridge competition,
To expatiate on the idea of proper deception in advertising.
To explore the likely effects of deceptive advertising on consumers.
This research investigates the use of proper deception in telecommunication advert campaigns and its own likely effects on consumers. For this to be achieved, data will be accumulated via multiple research methods which can be participant observation and compilation of telecoms advertising data in Nigeria. In-depth interviews may also be conducted by the researcher to get more understanding.
The idea of the terms "deceptive" and deception are equivocal, socio - culturally set up ideas. The thought of deception differs across years and across culture. In interpersonal research Masip, Garrido, and Herrero, (2004) carefully checked several definitions or descriptions of deception, they project an integrative description that defines deception as "the prepared effort, whether profitable or not, to cover up, construct and effect at all authentic or emotional information, by nonverbal or verbal method, to be able to sustain or generate in the consumer an idea that the communicator considers as wrong. This description integrates the ideas of your communicator's previous values and intentionality.
In communication, all tries of deception are intentional. Every marketing communication is planned, structured and completed consciously, by pros in communication. However a marketing consultancy is responsible for inactions and actions that have a first-rate possibility of deceiving and misleading customers. Marketers are open to the skill and resources to completely educate themselves about the implications of deception in their marketing actions or activities. For marketers to be nondeceptive it compels them to instruct or instruct themselves so that they are in times to comprehend how so when their omissions or activities may mislead. By recognizing this level marketers can regulate their activities in order to prevent deceiving customers, except of course they intentionally want to mislead customers (Boush et al, 2009).
Several explanations of deception in advertising have been suggested by different regulatory associations, legal body and organizations. As explained above, the National Trade Commission's (FTC) insurance policy statement on deception expresses that an advertisement is seen as "deceptive" if there is an omission, representation, practice or react organized by way of a firm that is susceptible to deceive a customer. (FTC, 1984). If these circumstances have occurred, the FTC will scrutinize the try out from the viewpoint of the client, acting rationally under the specific situation. When the attempt influences directly or is supposed towards a particular group, the FTC will research rationality from the viewpoint of the group. The omission, representation, practice or act should be materials. "Material" is if the action is likely to impact the customer's decision or action with regards to the service or product presented by the business enterprise executing such practice. If the results is actually that the customer's conduct is influenced, then your practice is seen as materials. If material, then a customer may be harmed by such an act because the customer might take decisions grounded on the unspecified deception that the clients could have not shaped usually or their choice could have been distinct from the main one actually used (FTC, 1984).
FTC evaluates advertisements for their distinctive content, as well as the phrases, pictures and words which obviously and absolutely portray bogus or misleading says. The FTC will verify both clear or explicit and implicit or total cases. An explicit or clear lay claim is a lay claim which is specifically manufactured in the advertisement. Example, "Books source knowledge" an implicit state is subliminally made. This affirmation, "Books supply information which string towards knowledge" implies rather than precisely attributing the booklet to knowledge. Materiality is vital in figuring out deceptive advertising. Any affirmation constructed within an advert must contain enough facts to back up the claim and should be connected to relevance.
The FTC strains that the omission of specific information for an advertisement can be viewed as as deceptive since the non-inclusion of materials information can string a consumer to arrive at a phony or mistaken idea in regards to a service or a product.
Example, when a company like Starbucks was to disseminate coupons for a free of charge cup of coffee when a customer buys one, but will not make it clear that preceding purchase should be five us dollars at least to redeem the discount; this is a specific example of a deceptive act, A earlier purchase of five dollars at least to redeem the discount is a material situation. The omission from the discount is obviously deceptive and clearly forbidden by FTC. A consumer with the goal of using the coupon has been tricked for the benefit for the company. The consumer is intentionally misled into trusting that any purchase would do and has been considered in to the store under wrong claim. This illustration evidently shows why materials omission is seen as deceptive by the FTC and is also illegal by regulations.
Not all marketplace persuasion encompasses deception, but all software industry deception takes destination to persuade. In other words deception available on the market is persuasion (Miller & Stiff, 1988) and it is influential to the persuasive aim of the marketer. It generally does not happen entirely to impact consumer's idea as an goal alone, nor should it happen to only amuse, captivate or amaze. Current market deception attempts to get attention and set up a state of mind, but the end result is constantly persuasion. Deception is a main social influence strategy and a collection of central persuasion strategies. Any take action of persuasion can require deception. Any act of persuasion can be utilized as a "deception accomplice or collaborator" so that it improves the realization of a deception passed on somewhere within an assumed statement, marketing campaign or concept.
Cialdini, (2001) and Pratkanis, (2008) expatiated on the types of persuasive techniques that research means can enhance persuasive outcome. They can all be carried out through deception, and each can turn out to be an accomplice or collaborator of, deception, if it is executed through deception or genuinely. Cialdini (2001) areas that research highlights that these persuasion techniques prosper largely when they cause only System 1 control by customers, which is when they soar beneath the deception - coverage sensor or radar. He designated six aspects that thrust people into utilizing automatized outline coordinating a reaction to persuasive announcements: being uninterested about this issue, being in a haste, a feeling of stress generally, feeling undecided, being unfocused, and being worn out. This shows that marketers will try to lead to situations differentiated by lots of or all those aspects or factors when implementing a persuasion strategy deceptively or for purposes of deception. While circumstances such as (cognitive tiredness, indifference, distractedness) you can do unintentionally in some situations, deception drivers will slim towards creating those conditions. However, if these persuasion techniques do hang on creating situations that reduce and repress a person's deception defense capacity, then these are essentially manipulative techniques.
A lot of deception theorists declare that deceptions wholly consist of simulation and dissimulations. Anolli et al. (2002) declares that we now have four essential types of deceptions: omission, resting, concealment and simulation. Keep it in mind that these aren't equally limited or exclusive; marketers the truth is use them in blend. Example, both omission and concealment are used to disguise and also assist in deceptive simulation. Johnson et al, (1993) used a deception typology, from writers (Bell and Whaley, 1991). Johnson et al, (1993) defined dissimulation as a strategy that delays communication or information of an accurate portrayal of the central deception. They defined simulation as a strategy that stimulates an inaccurate portrayal of the central deception. The concept of core deception is useful; it concerns the items the agent of the deception will try to distort, or to make a customer bias in their own brain. In the framework of marketplace, it should be broadly defined. Clearly, deceptions can take devote the falsification of services and products being shopped by the agent, as well as their characteristics, benefits, usage result and risk and so forth.
The deception crux or key can however, include deceptive illustrations such as items, claims and pictures about several components of some persuasion methods utilized in the note or statement to boost its persuasive affect. It will involve distortion of a substitute service and product to the complete one being sold, example, a contending brand or swap product type. It consists of distortions of defective things that may occur if the customer does purchase the product being promoted, and of peculiar things that will take place from taking a product. The deception crux or key also comprises distortions about the characterized business deal. It consists of distortions made around things that a scientist or social critic has discussed or might discuss the cons and risks of the merchandise. It comprises of distortions on how to trail and find out more on the product, and how handlers with particular levels of capability and knowledge can utilize it safely and effectively under potential use conditions.
There are several deception methods used today by marketers in every day marketing and in marketing communication such as:
Disguise and distraction is known to subdue protective cognitive response activities that require effort like counter-top arguing (Petty & Brock, 1981). In studies on persuasion, researchers normally engage topics for the whole amount of a persuasive note or information; securely distinguish the distracter from the persuasive information or communication. Deceitful marketers utilize distraction more sneakily and strategically than that, by manufacturing distractions in an advert advertising campaign that is timed and positioned to interrupt supervision of particular discoveries in the ad about disadvantages, limits and risk. Marketers' distractions are skillfully structured, pretested, and timed strategically to enable the deception of customers. Modern press communication present marketers with a breathtaking assortment of attention getting technological expertise; before marketers distributed advertising, promotional materials, website on an extensive basis, they research with, enhance, pretest and amend their usage of these technological abilities to sketch attention as proficiently as they can.
Completely omitting home elevators a particular risk, drawback or limitation, is a common current market deception approach ( Kardes, Posovac, & Cronley, 2004). Marketers leave out dangerous revelations and establish their productions to stop consumers from contemplating on their evaluation requirements or decision making requirements, to guarantee that an omission is overlooked. Usually marketer's exhibitions give partial omissions or "half- truths". For a long period, people have brought up a 50 % - real truth as an omission combined among truthful surprises, as a primary harmful form of deception, frequently debating a half - simple truth is "the darkest of lies". To recognize that something essential is not being shown or portrayed, a customer requires having a visible and understandable mental style of expectancy about what all should be unhidden. Strategist in communication obstruct this by reassuring customers into a feeling of exigency or proposing that "being decisive or critical" and taking swift action is more advanced than thinking and self applied willpower, and by separating their own advertisement and resources from those of immediate opposition whose adverts and resources can provide a different style of revelation that render the marketers omission clear.
A deceptive technique involves ideas and solutions to all the negative aftermath of being shown and sanctioned. Guerin, (2003) examines research about how language is used by people to avoid negative aftermaths or consequences from what's being said. Strategies in linguistics for avoiding the negative aftermath to make deceitful assertions are referred to as disclaimer, hedging, equivocation or mitigation. Guerin debates that preventing negative aftermath means evading clear troubles. Marketers use unclear or hedging terminology to attempt preventing the negative aftermath in the customer's brain that follow skepticism. Marketers perform this responsively, that is, by awaiting the overall disbelief on the presentation reliability to occur in the clients mind or even to be voiced, (example to a sales rep), and however seek to provide response through some avoidance practices. A large amount of marketers will attempt to do this preemptively. Guerin, (2003) examines how studies on equivocal, hedges and mitigation has moved on in different communal science departments under diverse labels and several grouping techniques or plans ( eg. , Caffi, 1999;Holmes, 1990). Hedges require presenting proactive "description" or "justifications" for one's deceptive acts, separating one's personal from the exhibition and assertion of your respective social solidarity with the target. A familiar form of hedging is to make use of modal vocabulary like "possibly", "should", "maybe", "could", and quantifiers like "most likely", "a few". These vocabulary enables a conclusive and positive key phrase, to be used and then your definitive key phrase should be licensed by including imaginable versions to it.
Jointly, blatant verbal lying down and blatant visible lying are extremely problematic for customers to cope with because training video and executive communication technology have outdone customer self-protection abilities. Verbal laying, is overtly expressing in words something about a genuine thing or specific in a manner that distorts that entity's actuality. Visual resting is overtly portraying a aesthetic image of an entity that is in fact real, in a aesthetically biased way that distorts its physical, evident truth. The verbal lies of marketers are hard for consumers to cope with because figuring out the lie consequently is subject to having certain information in memory space that signs the depiction as mistaken and fabricated. Technological manufacturing inventions have put consumers in a state where they often times don't have the required complex information for questioning or trusting something a internet marketer states concerning a product as untruth. Also, technological innovations for flawlessly changing visuals put customers in a situation of not being capable of deciding for themselves whenever a particular part of a visible representation has been modified except they have got word-perfect visible representation at heart of the reality of this thing (Wheeler, 2002).
Consumers are definitely more reliant for his or her recognition of visible and verbal laying built on the material of the lay on the forewarnings of other those who are further abreast of the truth, and can better sense lays. Marketers can now utilize the considerably augmented technological ability as a deception means to make perfect changes to genuine visible representations. The formation of any visual representation includes persuasion and clarification. (Wheeler, 2002). Factually, it includes constantly included a procedure when a communicator chooses, highlights and cleans so that the portrayed representation is best showing than the actual referent. Paintings are conformed representations done over several sittings, stirring or mixing collectively people and items from various places. Photographs and paintings have long shown two people in sync who on no occasion met personally, in a spot where they on no occasion were.
This strings us into a generally, recurrent deceptive category of ploy tagged framing tactics. "Framing" aggregates to presenting customers with an imperfect and distorted portrayal of a resolution problem. That misinforms their opinion and study of the task. To structure a purchase decision or evaluation for a person, marketers show a slim style of convinced that centers on only a few top features of a more element evaluation problem, attracts focus on the chosen framing of the marketing expert and states or shows that the shape portrayed by the marketer is tangible and certainly the sole sensible framing to utilize. Partial framing includes deliberating on some of the important features or usage aftermath of something, only evaluating the marketer's product carefully against a few of the possibly functional substitutes and characterizing the losses and threats connected with a product in a distorted and incomplete or imperfect way (Bettman, Luce, & Payne, 1998)
There are three methods designed as screening devices for deception in advertising, and they're normative perception method, Consumer impression method and Expectation testing process but this research can be involved with the buyer impression method mentioned below.
This second approach developed by (Gardner, 1975 ) focuses on consumer impressions. This method is not sophisticated and it requires on widely used copy- testing techniques. It could be executed after a limited period of knowledge building appropriate methods and questionnaires. In this process, consumers are presented with advertising and then advised to express (making use of well designed and managed types of procedures) what they thought the advertisements conveyed to them. A few pre-determined questions would be utterly standard while other would be specific. For instance, it was theorized an implicit safety demand have been laid that was not supported by product performance. The info obtained from consumer reactions is judged with the original claim and simple fact of the advertisement to learn if the needed skills are realized in order to determine if the total advertisement is either non deceptive or deceptive.
In lines with construing the likely deceptive characteristics of ad campaigns released by telecommunications companies in Nigeria, an interpretivst research idea or philosophy is assumed. In relation to (Bryman and Bell 2011) which depicts two philosophies "positivist" and "interpretivist", it is explained that these will be the major theoretical research view or viewpoint. The term Positivism is the method researchers choose to formulate hypotheses from present theory and examines them to justify laws while Interpretivisim will try to "comprehend distinctions between human being behavior in our position as cultural factors" (Saunders et al, 2009). The role of this paper as interpretivist is supported by this research in which a deceptive advert campaign can simply be recognized subjectively and translated in its interpersonal context.
With the close to scarcity of previous investigations on the presence of this issue in question combined with the nature of the study which is interpretative, an inductive and qualitative research method is adopted. When importance is put on in-depth interpretation of why, what and the implication or impact of such sensation then this method is suitable (Carson et al, 2001). This however allows theories to be produced from research results as opposed to the technique circled in deductive review (Bryman and Bell, 2011). Nonetheless the inductive method selects a bendable inclination with no predescribed theory to examine, suggestions produced from previous conceptions (Holloway, 1997).
Information received from qualitative procedure is seen to clarify the people's emotions and encounters. In conditions of this advertising research, a customer or marketers evaluation of an advertising campaign will probably reveal deceptive qualities. This process suggests relative beliefs and intrinsic disposition (Beh, 2009) which can or can't be evaluated by a quantifying means.
In my estimation, research workers sense that individual patterns is too complicated to formulate hypotheses and views that the inductive method would become more helpful in this research as it aids the acquisition of more understanding of the enclosed significance of the telecom ad campaign and its own influence on the consumers. Furthermore, growing theory after data has been compiled happens to be a satisfactory methods to increase knowledge that currently is out there (Bryman, 2001).
For this research a multiple data gathering strategy fits the adaptable structure of the qualitative research; additionally, the grouping offers an affluent picture of the study under research (Carson et al, 2001). Two methods would be utilized to acquire data which is qualitative interview and participant observation.
Beh, (2009) states that there surely is no particular order for selecting methods to fit research seeks and goals for interpretative technique. They are probably altered to comply with new data. Corresponding to (Kvale, 1996), the aim of this qualitative interview is to recognize themes of the world from the theme's viewpoint. With reference to this, semi structured in- depth interviews are conducted in person and via email to obtain additional home elevators the strategic use of deception in telecoms advertisement campaign and its own likely effect on consumers.
Six interviews are completed by email as a result of work scheduling and physical location as well as given interviewee's time and ease of delivering responses. Open- finished questions are interchanged to promote in- depth responses, in the course of this, researchers direct messages of assistance, as (Kivits, 2005) identifies the significant interpersonal relationship linking members and researchers. The final four interviews are conducted personally whereas the researcher notifies the interviewee of the problem to be reviewed before the scheduled interview in order to openly offer their viewpoints in a typical manner. This is however to apprehend the way the interviewees framework and comprehend subject matters and happenings (Bryman and bell, 2011). The interview responses are recorded and transcribed for even more analysis.
Participant Observation is defined as a written account appearing from researcher signing up for a group and observing what happens while making some records (Bryman and bell, 2011). In this case, it allows the researcher get close enough when you are a consumer of the products and services made available from the telecoms company. This transmits more information on the products and service provided by the telecoms company in comparism to the information actually pass on by the company's promotional plan.
In terms of sampling, non-probability purposive sampling is made use of; this is an instance whereby members are decided on by the researcher's only view (Bryman and bell, 2011). As there was no age range or specific intimacy. In this particular research, the samples targeted are five employees (both call middle and marketing employees) and five customers in one of Nigeria's reputable telecom companies which is Globacom Small. This selection was made due to ease of research admittance. Globacom is the second innovator in the telecoms industry in Nigeria immediately after MTN who is at the forefront. Globacom in the entire year 2011 placed about 22% of the market share with 19, 886, 014 (NCC, 2012).
Concerning ethical concerns, professionals and consumers are approached by the researcher for authorization to interview by offering arranging and information. Proper terms is utilized during the analysis as well as sustaining level of privacy and obscurity of members. Registered Interviews are transcribed with no work to distort replies.
Data is examined by using content evaluation, in cases like this two of the business's promotional TV plan is evaluated with regards to the responses provided by the members as well as where the researcher holds records of the observation and completely works around each, supplying interpretation to particular characteristics in association with the books provided above. Consumer impression method or approach would however be employed to assess deception in the ad campaign. The latter procedure is interpretation, which is usually devoted to the understanding of the analysts of the topic matter and data catch. Studies that are interpretive respectively are unique in that an identical research done by another researcher usually presents a different final result. This is however because of the difference in the anticipations and understanding of men and women towards things, (Beh, 2009) in this case promotional advert promotions.
Sequel to the books review and research methodology talk, the results of the principal research will be elaborated on in this chapter.
Grounded on the aim of this review and books review above, this research was completed using the consumer impression method or strategy to measure the level of deception in telecommunication advertisement campaigns. This technique is dependant on the fact that customers learn to respond to stimuli in a reliable and probable way. They tend to see what they acquired from previous experiences. So therefore this method focuses on discovered consumer impressions (Gardner, 1975). Using Globacom Small as a case study two specific promotional adverts "Glo text 4 million" and "Recharge and Get" (see appendix) were made available for customers and marketers to watch, after which they were designed to answer semi-structured in-depth interview questions predicated on this research.
The conclusions are presented based on the deception tactics elaborated on in the books review. However, the conclusions from the in-depth interview shed more light on issues in connection with the research purpose. It displays deception tactics such as omissions, language that misinforms and shuns responsibility, aesthetic and verbal distortion. These are said to be somewhat present in the promotional campaigns shown by Globacom Limited. These are techniques for reaching several goals such as coaching, reading, counselling, persuading and preaching. Although some specific discourse strategies and linguistic devices also contribute to the success in consumer persuasion, hence, they are essential to the procedure. Given that the aim of telecom promotional advertising is customer acquisition and retention by appealing to their, beliefs, needs and dreams, the advertisers use discourse styles and linguistic devices which are pleasing, advantageous, convincing, catching and in a position to trick the clients into picking their cell phones to send texts to be able to participate in promo draws, which in turn costs the clients their airtime and enhances the sales of the service providers.
As explained in the study technique, ten male and female participants were chosen randomly as there was no a long time. Five of these were made up of Globacom Limited employees (three marketers and two call center agents) as the other five were made up of customers. These worker were a hardcore nut to split as they were bound by company polices not to give away company information but chance came along as three marketers were eager to speak, as the customers were more than willing to speak as most of them found it a fascinating topic and a chance to speak up about the topic involved. Below are the conclusions.
Based on observation and according to the responses from participants, this Words misinformation was seen by almost all as exaggerated words, cognitive distortion and euphemism. This discourse strategy is due to the use of enjoyable expressions and words to avoid possibly upsetting things (Brik and Brik, 1997). This is essential so as not to alarm customers who are being convinced to enter into a get. The Nigerian telecom promotional promotions mainly include exaggerated language, euphemism and 100 % pure vagueness. Users are drained of the credit via the utilization of such discourse styles like:
"200 millionaires will be made in hundred days and nights, you could be one of the two 2 millionaires every day, and you could also earn the grand price of 30 million naira or ten million naira every month for three weeksto gain simply text WIN TO 555 NOW" Sample 1: (Glo text 4 million season 2, 2010)
"Just recharge N500 or even more and you will be one of the 127 blessed people to watch Manchester united live in the UK this year, all expenses paidthere are other fantastic awards looking forward to you, N250, 000 cash reward day-to-day for four people, that is 1million naira day-to-day plus 6 million naira worth of free airtime simply recharge N500 or even more everyday and you may be a success" Sample 2: (Glo Recharge and gain, 2010)
There is intentional cognitive distortion via the utilization of euphemism as seen above, for example, the entire situation is portrayed favorably and attractively as a "draw" rather than gaming or playing. In addition, writers intentionally are silent about morality by not portraying the deal as gambling, which the religious culture in Nigeria frowns at. Similarly, in both samples there exists cognitive distortion as the customer is at the outset informed that he / she may be the winner of large numbers, only to be told to text message (WIN TO 555 or Recharge N500). In addition, all these are created to entangle the clients to take part in the "draw".
The expressions within these ads may also be viewed as glittering expressions, these are phrases and phrases that own good connotations and can certainly help the customers into agreeing to the invitation for increased patronage and to enter the get without clean scrutiny. For instance, (See test 1 and 2 above). Appearance like those in daring letters are attractive to the Nigerian head and spins the customers' thoughts and persuades them into making more phone calls or going into the "get".
Furthermore, a discourse style such as argumentum advertising populum which simply means "telling customers what they would like to hear" (Combination, 1997) can also be associated with Nigerian promotional ads, (See test 1 and 2 above). Generally Nigerian people like to find out wonderful things about themselves and they also react kindly to somebody who says them nice things. As seen in this customer response "They showed one past victor with pictures to verify it. However, they tell you what you need to hear to participate in your competition"
Nigerians desire to be told about how precisely to become wealthy, getting gifts, talking about religion, how to uncover their destiny etc nonetheless, this form of discourse is actually used to area- trail the consumers from analytically thinking about the price of taking on the invitation and keeping away from the game.
From the examples above, marketer's use of the word highlighted in strong letters may be looked at misleading. The subsequent sentence shows that the term choice is a calculated work to misinform, as the promoters do not completely mean whatever the words connote. Plus expressions such as "you may possibly also succeed the grand prize of 30 million naira", "you will be one of the 127 blessed people to watch Manchester united" (Sample 1&2 above) distort customers' cognition. The promo advertisers get more obscure and indirect as they decrease in attributing or directing the announcements to a particular customer. For instance, "you" etc. as employed in the ad plan do not point at a particular customer ("you" can make reference to anyone). Therefore, the promo advertising agents or the providers cannot be presented accountable for the information in the ad campaign allowing customers know that they will win cash sums if they take part.
From observation, there is also the use of non-literal terminology which refers to a assortment of techniques can present interpretive difficulties to the customers (Whalen and Pexman, 2009). Distinct from literal words, non- literal terminology is seen as not overtly comprehensive but deliberate. Non - literal dialect thus includes the utilization of figurative language, particularly in non-literary writings. The use of non- literal terms can however be connected to ironic purposes, For instance, "200 millionaires will be produced in hundred days and nights" (See sample 1) this utterance is seen as hyperbolic. The company or advertising agent makes use of the hyperbole to implement a pragmatic function in order to augment the money up for grabs. Non-literal words is used in telecoms promotional campaign in Nigeria in order to establish interpretation obstacles to the recipient or customers.
Most respondents, came to the realization that visible distortions were somewhat present in the sample advertisements, as these were asked a few pre-determined questions regarding misinformation plus they were told to say other telecom advertisings that they considered to be misleading, for case in test 2 below,
Sample 2: Display Shot (Glo"Recharge and Win" promo, 2010)
This visibly shows employees at the Manchester United stadium but in real sense customers do feel like these pictures have been photoshoped in order to attract those football fans to take part in the promotional offer. Wheeler (2002), deliberates how individuals formulate artificial photographic authenticity indications by blending, specialized tracing, gap filling up, texture replications, complementing edges and tone and shade matching. Deceptive originals can be produced from the computer itself.
As observed in the response projected by way of a consumer (see appendix), this is not simply peculiar to Globacom Limited but to other telecoms service providers in Nigeria. This participant gives a few verbal distortions employed by a few companies like MTN and Visa Fone as observed in their slogans "Passport to attain the planet" "anywhere you go" which says a very important factor but offers another. This participant shows that this visible and verbal distortion are indeed utilized by a few companies intermittently or it could you need to be the voice of a dissatisfied customer; however, this dissatisfaction may have been because of this of the customers' recurrent observation of deceptive serves employed by companies to fully capture the intellects of customers. The customer is convinced that whatever a company says they would do, they must do and she is convinced that MTN and Visa Fone have obviously not stepped up to the plate and this could be considered as verbal distortion while Globacom as aesthetic distortion because the ad above (Sample 2) has been image shopped to gain the clients attention.
A customer, highlights that this could be categorised as selective information and not outright deception, also predicated on another customers response mentioned here, "you will be an instant winner if you take part', but it doesn't state that a raffle draw would decide the winners" he says that offering customers' incomplete information can be misleading as customers are been informed they would become instant winners if they participate but are not been told pulls would make a decision the winners. In line with this research this could also be classified as verbal distortion form the customer's perspective because he says that the advertisements do not explicitly declare that it is a game of chance which raffle attracts will be achieved. This is the conclusion derived by way of a most customer respondents on the Glo text 4 million advert (see appendix).
Another customer selectively looks at distortion from the idea of view of the illiterate consumers in the country. He declares that the promo terms and conditions and concealed charges, are not explained to customers properly, especially to those that are considered illiterates, they are the customers who wish to get rich immediately to be able to raised their quality lifestyle, however, these service providers or advertising agencies take advantage of this by not properly saying the terms and conditions if one was required to participate in the promo. Furthermore, it isn't sensible for all information to get out during an advertisement campaign especially proclaiming all the required conditions and conditions that apply to a certain promo. Towards the marketers it is merely easier to point out at the end of every advertisement that conditions and conditions apply as observed in this response from a internet marketer "I don't concur that you can find misinformation; the first advertisement stated that conditions and conditions apply. It is for a advisable person to find out the conditions and conditions"
This marketer believes that there surely is no form of misrepresentation in the ad campaigns presented (test 1 &2) as customers are to go in search of conditions and conditions bearing in mind that the grassroots customers may not have access to the internet. However, the way the customers interpret adverts are completely different from what the marketers intend. Through the viewpoint of the customers, I'd say that they regard not stating the precise conditions and conditions as verbal distortion.
Furthermore, the continuing future of visual deception may be damaged but it is unclear at this stage, the circulation and integration with in the public generally speaking and among software amateurs that carry out these visible manipulations, could terminate the illusion of photographic objectivity. Customers may simply just disbelieve the validity of most visual representations portrayed by marketers because simple persuasion has made it a typical commonsense practice to the point where even customers find themselves doing it. Additionally Photography may at present be shunned as a dependable see. Digital technology utilization by customers may affect the photograph's distorted halo of dependability (Boush et al, 2009).
From observation and participant responses, a few omissions were described from the test Globacom ads offered. The participants were asked to state what they sensed about the advertising in relation to misinformation and most participants mentioned a similar thing all round. For instance, a call center agent explained that "they never reach mention things like gain access to fees, service renting and things such as that. The actual cost is seldom stated"; "potential individuals were not informed duly on the expense of participating in the promo (100 naira per text)"
From the response above the agent was willing to give information despite the fact that they might be destined by company insurance policy but he made his observations clear. He mentioned that most times access fees, service accommodations and actual costs are omitted in adverts; this may be attributed to limited advertisement space allowed. Additionally, gain access to fees are hidden charges a customer pays to gain access to the telecoms product or service, they are really charges not made known to customers, while service renting are fees paid to actually get a service, they can be payable either every month or weekly with regards to the type of service or product. Also he stated the fact that the "Glo text 4 million" ad presented was lacking very important information (100 Naira per text message charge) that was duly omitted. However other respondents including customers and a few employees concurred with this observation meanwhile a few disagreed, saying that there was no misinformation in the advertising presented. For example. "I don't concur that there is misinformationI also do not think this practice is peculiar to the Nigerian telecoms industry or even Nigeria as a country. " This internet entrepreneur highly disagreed with the idea of misinformation or omission in the ads shown, probably for concern with being sanctioned by the business or it may have being his actual perception. A number of consumers also mentioned that terms and conditions were not announced, these terms and conditions are very important so that the customers are aware of what they are going to sign up for. The business actually expects the clients to either go in search of these conditions via the internet or call the decision center for more information but because these conditions are not mentioned the clients do not know and also believe that there are no conditions for coming into such promo thus before the customers even understand it, they would have entered for the promo being advertised before learning that there are conditions for being successful; this may have unwanted effects on the clients morale.
According to (Muthukrishnan & Ramaswami, 1999) information may be omitted from a marketing campaign for many reasons; a internet entrepreneur may leave out a few information as a deceptive take action to keep customers from specific information. Usually customers are insensitive to what may be missing from a marketer's advertising campaign such as (warnings, unmentioned features, and options) plus they depend highly on whatever information is explicitly and evidently conveyed to them. By doing this they are ready to form judgments predicated on deliberately imperfect, selective and biased information. Customers may however disregard the issue of how much and which information was deliberately omitted from the plan, and function on whatever is put forward, though it is meager, as enough for formulating assessments about the product. In addition when people are highly aware of a product, so when the evaluative context provides reference items that show that a few possibly available and relevant information were omitted, the importance of the omitted information is amplified. In that case, individuals may change their current ideas in regards to a product in the direction of a more "normatively appropriate" diagnosis.
In addition to these findings there have been other discoveries that happen to be peculiar to the objective of this research plus they include the customer effect towards these deceptive ads, how marketers happen strategies for their ad marketing campaign and the participants views on the actual acceptability of deceptive advertisements in Nigeria. The participants were asked to reveal what their reactions were after sounding a misleading advertisement, if any. Most respondents including some Globacom employees said they just dismiss them while a few went further to disperse the word by causing his or her discovery recognized to other customers. Also, regarding Marketers, these were asked to provide us an idea of how they come about strategies for their promotions and tell us if deceptive advertising is often used but like I brought up earlier, most employees were reluctant to say anything against their company so therefore there was very little information given on this question, however, most said they didn't understand how strategies were developed but a few did say that sometimes deceptive techniques may be employed to improve sales because of competition but it isn't frequently done as there are laws and regulations guarding against that. For instance, a marketer explained that "Sometimes it is needed to promote sales".
Furthermore members were also asked to state their views on the acceptability of deceptive advertising in Nigeria and how tolerable it should be in telecoms ads. Most participants did talk about that deceptive advertising won't fully be accepted and tolerated at all but since most people in Nigeria are needy to get rich one of many ways or the other; this places potentials for it to be accepted. Furthermore the regulations on misleading, deceptive and destructive advertising is there but aren't being enforced properly.
The aim of this research has been to explore and reveal the marketing occurrence on the use of strategic deception in telecoms advert plan in Nigeria. Results are derived in line with the research objective mentioned in section 1; managerial implications, limitations and suggestions for further research follow thereafter.
Research findings expose that deceptive advertising is definitely used but is not really a major strategy employed by telecoms companies even though there is certainly healthy competition on the market. This deceptive techniques are strategically found in promotional promotions to receive the attention of customers and also to persuade them through their desire, would like and must participate in pulls. However, for customers to discover a deceptive function, the customers' need to have considerable understanding of that advertised which may have negative effects to them, as they might be withdrawn from taking part or entering into promos; viral negative comment may be passed from one customer to the other etc. In addition, deceptive advertising to conclude is not completely a negative strategy, it just depends on how it is been used strategically to accomplish a company's goal, these strategies have been described in the books review. Deceptive advertising is definitely captivating for the marketers as they try to beat competition even though they may be fined if used wrongly and discovered by regulations.
Furthermore, Globacom has shown a few misleading traits as observed in the findings and this has been good for the business in obtaining their target; they inform Nigerians what they would like to hear. They may have depicted some deceptive qualities which were strategically used. In terms of potentials for acceptability, this won't be satisfactory but since Nigerians need to get rich the simplest way they can, then there is certainly potential for success using deceptive advertising. In addition, customers would like most telecommunications adverts to become more transparent for better understanding. As exhibited in the books review, an insight into the idea of deception has been elaborated on to give individuals an in-depth understanding. I will suggest that some degree of exaggeration be tolerated in telecommunication ad campaign since it is a sure way to make sales, gain customers and perhaps maintain them which is the main aim of the business.
These research results have implications for the marketing practice. This research has helped broaden our thoughts to the many types of deception in advertising and also to the finding of deceptive characteristics in telecoms advertising in Nigeria which is significantly present. However, this also provides us an perception into the brains of customers and their interpretations of telecoms advertising. These finding combined with previous research confirms the negative and positive effects of deceptive advertising which marketers should focus on, in conditions of attaining and losing customers and also making earnings.
According to (Davis, 1994) Companies seem to mislead the general public in the quest for increased income and regrettably ethics may be challenged when it comes to decisions in advertising. If ethics were to perform a huge role in company decisions, the occurrence of deceptive attempts would reduce. Enforcing ethical guidelines is the first step to exterminating the identified acceptability of advertising routines that are deceptive. It is seen that moral emphasis is reduced as one goes into the marketplace. Because of this, once people get into an advertising company they need to be shown explicitly, that the integration of ethics into related advertising decisions is an important behavior. This can be attained by attaching ethical standards or requirements to adverts; in doing so making them translucent, clear, simple and easily understandable as suggested by customers as shown in the interview replies.
The reduction of unethical manners and the emphasis of moral behaviors by regulatory body such as Country wide Communications Commission rate (NCC) also enhance the improvement of an operating climate or industry that is ethical (Davis, 1994). In the long run, deception can be reduced or prevented in advertising by altering academic training or firm management. Training and Management can be altered by increasing the influence of ethics on decision making among all experts in advertising (Davis, 1994). Furthermore, it has been debated that professional and business universities have lectured decision making on the lands that the communal responsibility of any company is to improve earnings. Since deceptive advertising has become a problem of great matter, improvement in the teachings on its ethics has took place (Davis, 1994). Therefore the impact of ethics is better, decision making techniques by advertising managers in future will refuse cases that are deceptive in advertising (Davis, 1994).
This research has a few constraints and they are the time, test selection disadvantages and review location. First of all, time is a limitation as this research got a distribution deadline that was to be adhered to. To verify that the researcher completes this research on time, a planned time was assemble.
The second limitation is, sample selection drawbacks as this research required customers and marketers to be interviewed but marketers were limited in number and were limited in the amount of information they could give out due to company policies they are really bound by but with much persuasion a few could actually speak thoroughly.
Thirdly is research location which is the previous limitation. Globacom Small was used as the analysis location as two advert campaigns were analyzed by members. Having got a valid final result confirming that proper deception is not really a major strategy employed by the company, it still does not speak closely for other telecoms companies in Nigeria bearing in mind that this is likely done to defeat competition. Quite simply, the researcher was limited by just two advert campaign samples from one company among the lot in Nigeria.
There are vital suggestions for even more research; first of all, future research could be achieved using a different research procedure, probably the quantitative research method in order to capture a larger sample size also to examine other telecoms advert campaigns in Nigeria. It might however be a comparative study between several telecoms companies, to demonstrate the magnitude to which deceptive or non-deceptive adverts are utilized; this investigation may be done in another country of the experts' choice.
Secondly, future research could look at this subject from the point of view of the clients only, focusing on the consequences deceptive advertising might have on customers all together. This would help marketers learn how to respond to these results.
Thirdly, future research may possibly also investigate the effect of deceptive advertising on earnings versus the company's sales methods to see if it is an advisable strategy.