Advertising is a one way communication between a seller and a buyer of a product or service. It is used to provide more information to the customer about the product or service so that the customer may decide to buy from the advertising vendor. Advertising is generally used to attract new customers. By seeing advertisements, current customers continue to believe that what they are using is the right choice. This is called ‘Brand Loyalty’. Once a customer starts using a particular brand, he starts to feel comfortable with it. Also, with the use of advertisements, the idea is continuously reinforced into his brain. Greater the frequency of advertisements, deeper goes the belief of customers that the advertised brand is the best brand to buy.

There are as many modes of advertising as there are modes to reach people. The modes include billboards, television, radio, magazines, newspapers, emails, web pages, mobile messages, video games and many more. Generally, there are advertising agencies that handle the details. The job of advertising is given to them with some basic idea of what kind of impression the advertiser wants to create on the audience. Advertising agencies are a set of creative people. They take the raw idea and convert it into an advertisement by using eye catching visuals, signature tunes, logos, jingles, one liner slogans etc. There is no dearth of new ideas to attract the attention of people.

There is a style of advertising called covert advertising in which the actual message is embedded in some entertainment media. For example a character in a movie displays or uses a particular brand. Remember Tom Cruise displaying Nokia logo on his phone in the movie Minority Report?

These days, with the information technology boom in the world, advertisements are everywhere. Anywhere an audience can access the information, advertisements are there. May it be public places like roads, restaurants, airports, trains, buses, bus stops, shopping marts or the privacy of our homes; they would reach us through the internet or through our phones. Sometimes they are extremely helpful, some other times, quite a nuisance. It is become a necessity as it is very important for the economic growth of a country. And yes, without them we would spend more time deciding what to buy.

In spite of its benefits, advertising is often accused for exploiting young children and for misguiding audience. Spam is an unsolicited bulk email advertising strategy. In my opinion, they do no more than putting unnecessary load on the Internet Service Providers. People generally use spam filters and delete the mails without even reading them.

A large amount of money is spent on advertising. In fact, up to 60% of the cost that we pay for a product or service accounts to advertising. Today, more than $200 billion are spent on advertising only in the United States. Throughout the world, this figure is more than $420 billion. Amazing? Never knew this? Yes. This is true.

"Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is, I don't know which half." This is a famous quote which emphasizes on the importance of market research and targeting on the right prospective customers. If done effectively, this would save costs to the advertisers and eventually to the customers too. Also it would reduce the wastage of resources by trying to sell products or services to people who don’t want it.