Honesty and modesty in advertising

No Thumbnail Available
Murphy, Niall
Issue Date
MA in Marketing
Dublin Business School
Items in Esource are protected by copyright. Previously published items are made available in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher/copyright holder.
‘Brands are claiming, over-claiming and laddering themselves into a morass of sameness, disbelief and confusion, but moreover a sea of distrust and this is a worrying place to be’ (Listone, 2005). This study begins with looking at peoples general attitudes towards advertising. It becomes apparent that consumers are becoming more and more critical of advertising with a large majority believing advertising to be dishonest, deceptive and manipulative. Through a comprehensive review of the literature the researcher proposes and tests possible solutions to create positive attitudes towards advertising. The principal objective of this thesis is to examine the effectiveness of both honesty and modesty in advertising. It investigates whether perceived honesty and perceived modesty in advertising creates more positive attitudes than advertisements with hyperbole and arrogance. The secondary objective of this thesis was to examine do younger people react more positively towards advertisements they perceive as honest or modest than older people. The primary research for this study involved both qualitative and quantitative research methods. For the qualitative method focus groups were used. The results of these focus groups were used in the designing of the quantitative research method which was a self-administered questionnaire. The results showed that the overall participants of the study reacted more positively towards advertisements they perceived as honest. This was the same for ads they perceived as modest. It was also discovered that regardless of age, peoples' attitudes towards different types of advertisements was the same.