When Flipkart Internet Private Limited put out this unpleasant and crude advertisement to sell their products online: “Did you know beauty breeds success?” it was pulled up by the Advertising Standards Council of India for unethical advertising!
The ad is quoted as follows: Did you know beauty breeds success? Research shows that beautiful women are more successful in their lives. This is because when women improve their appearances, they get noticed, listened to and eventually respected for their opinion. Such women not only become confident but also remain motivated to perform even better in life. Every woman has the capacity to look beautiful, irrespective of the age, weight, height and complexion. The idea is to make the most of the looks one is born with. Regular care of hair & nails, makeup to enhance your natural beauty, good clothes to accentuate the body contours, and comfortable shoes to complete the look, are time-tested beauty regime every woman should follow. And since a woman of this age is always on-the-go and with so much to do, we have brought all these beauty & lifestyle products right on the mobile sets.
This advertisement is unethical and in poor taste. It feeds on perceived insecurities of consumers and attributes its findings (about beauty breeding success) to some vague “research”. In the first line of its deeply backward advertising gimmick, the write up does not make any distinction between “beautiful women” and “well-dressed” women, damaging the veneer of ethics the marketing team is clearly trying to hide behind (as it does when it suggests that anybody can be beautiful irrespective of age, weight and what not). I can only imagine that women will be “noticed” if they speak up, listened to if they make intelligent conversation and eventually respected for their opinion, and NOT for their wardrobe collection.
The Council concluded that the claim in the mailer, “Research shows that beautiful women are more successful in their lives”, was not substantiated. The promotional mailer contravened the Code of ethics in advertising. The complaint was UPHELD.