There are many laws in place to ensure companies advertise their products and services in a truthful and non-deceptive way. A new business is going to be most successful if they have effective marketing materials in place; however, advertising laws are in place to protect the consumer. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is responsible for regulating these laws. When the FTC reviews an advertisement, they do so as they are the consumer, and try to read and understand the advertisement as a consumer.
Business owners retain business attorneys in matters regarding their marketing to ensure they comply with FTC rules, and to get the most out of marketing their services or products. Business attorneys guide business owners in areas including, but not limited to: product labeling, email advertising, print advertising, online or digital advertising, and broadcast advertising. Attorneys also are available to assist clients with advertising for contests and sweepstakes, disclaimers, and disclosures. Although FTC rules and regulations are designed to protect the consumer, they also help business owners market effectively, and help build credibility with consumers.
There are some products and services that require special claims be added to the advertisement. Some examples of these services and products are alcohol, sweepstakes or contests, diet and fitness, and advertisements directed towards children. There are also special regulations regarding using the terms “free”, “new”, “made in the USA”, and “guaranteed”.