Marketing vs. Misrepresentation (know the difference) by Precious Toju
My experience with Lagos Jewellers
On 3 occasions in 2020, in an attempt to purchase some jewelries that will have reasonable durability, I ended up paying for a “wear and wash”
The most annoying part is, a particular one I only used once and booooooom 💣 by the time I got home it had started fading, approaching the Seller the next day, what she claimed was that, I could not have worn the jewelry set once for it to start fading.
In other words, I would have worn it “more than once” before it can start fading for a jewelry set she gave me a minimum of 5 years guaranty.
This is very typical of some Nigerian vendors.
A lot of entrepreneurs in the process of marketing their product do a lot of misrepresentation just to sell off.
Though they may end up selling to few people and probably make a quick cash, but, they do not sit back to reflect the end result of their actions and how it will later affect them, business and legal wise.
The main question now is, when does marketing degenerate to a misrepresentation and what are the likely consequences, remedies for the vendor and buyer.
Now, let’s look out what marketing is
- What is marketing?Marketing generally has to do with promoting and selling one’s products and/or services, which largely includescarrying out research on the market, competition, rate of demand and advertisement.
In other words, when you are marketing your goods or services, all you are doing is to put it in the face of the end users or consumers and basically tell them why they should prefer and chose yours over what your competitorsare offering them.
In fact, most times, when marketing, you have to position yourself as being better in words and in deeds, which is why customers or clients will put and choose you first before any other person.
- What is misrepresentation? Misrepresentation is a legal term which basically has to do with deceit.
According toInvestopedia ”In common law jurisdictions, a misrepresentation is an untrue or misleading statement of fact made during negotiations by one party to another, the statement then inducing that other party to enter into a contract. The misled party may normally rescind the contract, and sometimes may be awarded damages as well”
In simple illustration, if that Lagos Jeweler had told me that the jewelry set worth tens of thousands will still fading almost immediately I use it, then I will not bother spending so much on it, or maybe, I would have bought with that clear understanding.
Of course, she knew that revealing the truth will resort to losing my patronage and that of others, hence, she decided to employ deceits in her marketing strategies.
The thin line
While marketing on one hand has to do with promoting your goods and services for people to buy willing without any form of doubt, misrepresentation on the other, has to do with promoting your goods and services with deceit, thereby saying what is untrue just to conjure people to buy.
Notwithstanding, marketing and misrepresentation has to do with promoting one’s goods and services.
But, one (marketing) is done with honesty while the other (misrepresentation) is done with insincerity just like the Lagos jeweler I wrote about in this write up.
There is a thin line between both and legal liability can arise in the case of misrepresentation.
Just in case you are wondering how to protect yourself and business from legal liability when it comes Marketing and Misrepresentation, here is How to protect your Business from misrepresentation when marketing.
The best way out
In times like this, when you pay cash to a vendor ensure to get your receipt and if it’s a transfer, please do it on your mobile app to have a descriptive E-Receipt.
The point really?!
Is to have an evidence of the purchase, just in case it turns out to be like mine.
Are you a startup or business owner who want to learn how to avoid and fix costly legal business mistakes in your daily transactions?!
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Hope you found this write-up useful….and how was your day.
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Precious Toju, Esq. #TheStructureLady