'Surrogate Advertising' is a form of advertising which is used to promote banned products like cigarettes and alcohol, in the disguise of another product.This type of advertising uses a product of a fairly close category ex- club soda, or mineral water in case of alcohol, or products of a completely different category ex- music CD's, playing cards etc to hammer the brand name into the heads of consumers.
The banned product (alcohol or cigarettes) may not be projected directly to consumers but rather masked under another product under the same brand name, so that whenever there is mention of that brand, people start associating it with its main product(the alcohol or cigarette). In India there are tons of companies doing that, from Bacardi Blast music CD's , Bagpiper Club Soda to Officers Choice playing cards.
Surrogate advertising is advertising which embeds a brand or product message inside an advertisement which is ostensibly for another brand or product. There are a number of reasons for companies to use surrogate advertising. One of the most common reasons is to circumvent a ban on direct advertisements of particular products. Many nations have laws restricting alcohol and tobacco advertising, for example, so companies' surrogate advertising to market their products. Techniques used might include advertising another product with the same brand name, sponsoring community events, issuing public service announcements, or sponsoring sports teams. All of these activities technically do not violate the ban on direct advertising, but they still get consumers familiar with the company's branding
Different Forms of Surrogate Advertising:
Many companies make TV commercials, but most of them advertise a product directly. Some companies may be banned from doing this under a region’s particular laws, so the company creates a commercial that highlights an item outside the brand’s normal products. For example, a company known for making alcohol may make a commercial that highlights a new soft drink. The commercial itself is made to advertise the soft drink but, because the company is known for making alcohol, many viewers will automatically think of the alcoholic beverage when they see the soft drink ad.
Another type of surrogate advertising is done through sponsorships, usually of events or sports teams, but it also could be for things such as scholarships, parks and foundations. In this type of advertising, the company is rarely advertising anything. All the company does is leaves its logo somewhere, such as on a wall at an event or the outside perimeter of a sporting event, and this places the idea of the brand in the consumers' mind. The company is not technically advertising anything, just showing its logo, which is within most regions' laws governing acceptable advertising. Most of the products banned by surrogate advertising laws are associated with health risks; for example, cigarettes are linked to lung cancer and other diseases. A surrogate advertisingmethod in this case might be a public service announcement (PSA) about the risks of smoking, though the PSA might use the company’s colors or logo. This informs consumers about the hazards of using the product but, at the same time, attracts consumers to a certain brand because the announcement subtly alludes to it. The legality of surrogate advertising is questionable in some regions and countries, so companies should check local laws before using any surrogate methods. While there are many areas that allow this type of advertising, others will sue the company. Aside from pulling the advertisements, the company also may be fined and face other penalties.
Observed Surrogate Advertisement:
When we are watching TV for two or three hours, we can observe that the following advertisements are shown, but whisky or alcoholic products are not advertised directly. Surrogate products like Soda, Mineral Water, Music CD having...