7 Helpful Hints for your Advertisements

The current economic climate is tough enough for most business owners, and store owners are justifiably fighting for every sale they can get. In this competitive atmosphere, huge sales and promotions are everywhere — but business owners need to be exceptionally careful HOW they advertise in order to protect themselves from false advertising lawsuits.

Both State and Federal laws provide protection to consumers against false advertising, so it’s important to abide by these 7 Guidelines to keep your advertisements legal, honest, and free from misleading information.

Rule 1. Be Accurate – If you’re selling last year’s model, don’t use a photo of the current model in your ad, even if they look overwhelmingly similar. Be honest about the product & don’t exaggerate – if a jacket is only “water-resistant,” then it can’t be described as “water-proof.”

Rule 2. Get Permission – Selling a name brand item? Be sure to get permission to use their official logo or catchphrase in your advertisements. One good example: Watch for the upcoming advertisements at your local watering holes next month. Many bars and restaurants will begin advertising food and beer specials for “The Big Game” – because they cannot legally use the NFL’s copyrighted (and fiercely protected) term for its annual championship game: “The Super Bowl.”

Rule 3. Treat Competitors Fairly it’s best not to knock the competition with disparaging comments; you’re better off describing the good attributes of your own products/services.

Rule 4. Have Sufficient Quantities On Hand Are you offering a free gift with every purchase? Better make sure you have ample supplies of those “free gifts” available. If you’re not sure, it’s best to include phrases like “while supplies last” or “for the first 50 customers” (and then be sure to have those 50 free gifts!)

Rule 5. Beware the Word “FREE” Free needs to be just that – free. “Free” does not mean you increase the price of the regular sale item in order to cover your cost for giving away the “free” item. So, if you offer “free” sunglasses (valued at $10) with every handbag purchase, you cannot start charging $70 dollars for a handbag that is normally priced at $60. That is more than what you would normally charge for the handbag, so the sunglasses really aren’t “free.”

Rule 6. Be Specific About Pricing and Savings Be honest about the original retail price of an item, and the amount of real savings created by the sale price.

Rule 7. There are Limitations on Extensions of Credit Pay careful attention to the next car commercial you see on TV – the claims of “0% down, LOW interest rates” are almost always followed by the real details in fine print: “for qualifying customers only.” Be careful of the pitfalls involved with extending credit – for example, it can be considered discriminatory to offer credit to a “risky” customer, but require him to put more money down than a “creditworthy” customer.

For full details on this article, please click on the link: http://smallbusiness.findlaw.com/business-operations/advertising-marketing/advertising-legal-rules%281%29.html

If you have questions about your business advertising and product descriptions, please contact us at http://www.bdhlaw.net

Best regards
und viele Grüße aus Charlotte
Reinhard von Hennigs