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Definition: Comparative Advertising
Comparative Advertising is a form of advertising in which the consumer is convinced to buy the product by comparing it to the competitor’s products. At times the competitors’ brand is specifically named. If used wisely, it results in the companies getting some attention of the consumers towards their brands.
The advantages of this form of advertising are that the message and the brand are etched in the consumers mind. It creates a perception of trustworthy as the consumer believes that the company wants the consumer to be well informed about every detail.
However the disadvantages also abound and include increased rivalry (most of the times the competing firm responds with similar advertisements), high promotion costs and may also result in costly lawsuits.
For e.g. Rin, which is a product of HUL and Tide which is a product of P&G often engage in comparative advertising.
Another classic example of comparative advertising in India involves the two major cola producers: Pepsi and Coca-cola. In fact, several law-suits were filed against Coca-cola, when they engaged in comparative advertising mocking the national icons Sachin Tendulkar and Amitabh Bacchan.
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