The Impact of Unethical and False Advertising on Social Media Towards Consumer Buying Behaviour: An Examination Among Young Adults in Malaysia

  • Meerat Tayyab Mukhtar Qureshi
  • Kanesh Gopal

Abstract

Multiple discussions and papers exist regarding the impact of false advertising on consumer behaviour. However, there has been little information on false and unethical advertising through social media platforms in Malaysia. Existing research have focused on various other information such as the impact of deceptive advertising on women purchasing behaviour in Pakistan, the influence of false claims from advertisements conveyed through word-of-mouth, the effect it has on gender-based customers, etc. This paper focuses on the impact of false advertising found in social media and e-commerce platforms on consumer buying behaviour, with an emphasis on young adults. It further identifies the importance of adhering to the principles of ethics in terms of advertising.  The study consists of a sample size of 103 young adults in Malaysia. The Pearson Correlation Test had shown a significant correlation between all three independent variables, with a strong relationship was discovered between intent to purchase and perceived risk with the buying behaviour of consumers. The results of this study showed that advertisements on online platforms manipulated the purchase behaviour of consumers, specifically young adults in Malaysia. 

References

Abutabenjeh, S., and Jaradat, R. (2018). Clarification of research design, research methods, and research methodology. Teaching Public Administration, 36(3), pp. 237-258.
Akbar, S. (2011). Factors Affecting the Consumers Decision on Purchasing Power. Journal of Economics and Behavioral Studies, 2(3), pp. 108-116.
Alam, F., and Siddiqui, D. (2019). Impact of Culture on E-Commerce Purchase Intention with the Mediatory Role of Environmental and Cultural Trust and Moderation of Perceived Security Risk. SSRN Electronic Journal.
Alfred, O. (2013). Influences of Price and Quality on Consumer Purchase of Mobile Phone in the Kumasi Metropolis in Ghana: A Comparative Study. European Journal of Business and Management, 5(1).
Almousa, M. (2011). Perceived risk in apparel online shopping: A Multi-dimensional perspective. Canadian Social Science, 7(2), pp. 23-31.
Andriani, D., and Nugraha, N. (2018). Spending habits and financial literacy based on gender on employees. IOP Conference Series: Materials Science and Engineering, 407, p.012089.
Appel, G., Grewal, L., Hadi, R., and Stephen, A. (2020). The Future of Social Media in Marketing. Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, 48, pp. 79–95.
Ariff, M., Sylvester, M., Zakuan, N., Ismail, K., and Ali, K. (2014). Consumer Perceived Risk, Attitude and Online Shopping Behaviour; Empirical Evidence from Malaysia. IOP Conference Series: Materials Science and Engineering, 58, p.012007.
Ariffin, S., Mohan, T., and Goh, Y. (2018). Influence of consumers’ perceived risk on consumers’ online purchase intention. Journal of Research in Interactive Marketing, 12(3).
Attas, D. (1999). What's Wrong with "Deceptive" Advertising?. Journal of Business Ethics, 21, pp. 49–59.
Aveyard, H. (2010). Doing a literature review in health and social care: A practical guide (2nd ed.). Berkshire, Great Britain: Open University Press.
Castro, I., Majmundar, A., Williams, C., and Baquero, B. (2018). Customer Purchase Intentions and Choice in Food Retail Environments: A Scoping Review. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 15(11), p.2493
Chang, C. (2006). Beating the New Blues: Mood repair through exposure to advertising. Journal of Communication, 56, 198-217.
Cohan, J. (2001). Towards a New Paradigm in the Ethics of Women's Advertising. Journal of Business Ethics, 33, pp. 323–337.
Datacommons.org (2020). Malaysia - Place Explorer - Data Commons. [online] Available at: [Accessed 15 October 2020]
Duncan, C., & Nelson, J. (1985). Effects of humor in a radio advertising experiment. Journal of Advertising, 14(2), 33-64.
Etikan, I., 2016. Comparison of Convenience Sampling and Purposive Sampling. American Journal of Theoretical and Applied Statistics, 5(1), p.1.
Faerber, A.E., and Kreling, D.H. (2014). Content analysis of false and misleading claims in television advertising for prescription and non-prescription drugs. Journal of General Internal Medicine, Vol. 29, No. 1, pp. 110–118.
Folarin, T., and Ogundare, E. (2016). Influence of Customers’ Perceived Risk on Online Shopping Intention in Malaysia’s Apparel Industry. International Journal of Information System and Engineering, 4(2).
Grau, S., and Zotos, Y. (2016). Gender stereotypes in advertising: A review of current research. International Journal of Advertising, 35(5), pp. 761-770.
Hassan, Z., Schattner, P., and Mazza, D. (2006). Doing A Pilot Study: Why Is It Essential?. Malays Family Physician, 1(2-3), pp. 70-73.
Hentschel, T., Heilman, M., and Peus, C. (2019). The Multiple Dimensions of Gender Stereotypes: A Current Look at Men’s and Women’s Characterizations of Others and Themselves. Frontiers in Psychology, 10.
Isa, W., Suhaimi, A., Harun, A., and Noordin, N. (2019). Cultural Dimensions of Malay Cultures: Performance of IT Professionals. International Journal of Recent Technology and Engineering, 8(2S2), pp. 17-21.
Jager, J., Putnick, D., and Bornstein, M. (2017). II. More Than Just Convenient: The Scientific Merits of Homogeneous Convenience Samples. Monographs of the Society for Research in Child Development, 82(2), pp. 13-30.
Kamalul Ariffin, S., Mohan, T., and Goh, Y. (2018). Influence of consumers’ perceived risk on consumers’ online purchase intention. Journal of Research in Interactive Marketing, 12(3), pp. 309-327.
O' Barr, W. (2015). What Is Advertising?. Advertising & Society Review, 16(3).
Odekerken‐Schröder, G., De Wulf, K., and Hofstee, N. (2002). Is gender stereotyping in advertising more prevalent in masculine countries?. International Marketing Review, 19(4), pp. 408-419.
Ha, L. (2008). Online Advertising Research in Advertising Journals: A Review. Journal of Current Issues & Research in Advertising, 30(1), pp. 31-48.
Ha, Y.H., John, J., Janda, S., & Muthaly, S. (2011). The effects of advertising spending on brand loyalty in services. European Journal of Marketing, 45(4), 673-691.
Hadija, Z., Barnes, S., and Hair, N. (2012). Why we ignore social networking advertising. Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal, 15(1), pp. 19-32.
Hemsley, J., Jacobson, J., Gruzd, A., and Mai, P. (2018). Social Media for Social Good or Evil: An Introduction. Social Media + Society, 4(3), p.205630511878671.
Ji, S., Zheng, X., and Chen, D. (2012). Perceived Risk and its Impact on Customer Intention to Online Shopping Based on Different Products. International Journal on Advances in Information Sciences and Service Sciences, 4(17), pp. 1-11.
Jones, T. (1991). Ethical Decision Making by Individuals in Organizations: An Issue-Contingent Model. The Academy of Management Review, 16(2), p. 366.
Kawa, L., Rahmadiani, S., and Kumar, S. (2013). Factors Affecting Consumer Decision-Making: A Survey of Young-Adults on Imported Cosmetics in Jabodetabek, Indonesia. The SIJ Transactions on Advances in Space Research & Earth Exploration, 1(3), pp. 17-22.
Keith, N., Burnett, M. and Pettijohn, C. (2008). Ethics in Advertising: Differences in Industry Values and Student Perceptions. Academy of Marketing Studies Journal, pp. 81-96.
Kemp, S., and Moey, S. (2019). Ecommerce In Malaysia In 2019 — Datareportal – Global Digital Insights. [online] DataReportal – Global Digital Insights. Available at:
Kilbourne, W. (1990). Female Stereotyping in Advertising: An Experiment on Male-Female Perceptions of Leadership. Journalism Quarterly, 67(1), pp. 25-31.
Kotler, P., Armstrong, G., Harris, L., and He, H. (2019). Principles Of Marketing. Harlow, United Kingdom: Pearson Education Limited.
Larson, M. (2006). Descriptive Statistics and Graphical Displays. Circulation, 114(1), pp. 76-81.
Madden, T.J., & Weinberger, M.G. (1982). The effects of humor on attention in magazine advertising. Journal of Advertising, 11(3).
Maheshwari, P., Seth, N., & Gupta, A.K. (2016). An empirical approach to consumer buying behaviour in Indian automobile sector. Industrial and Commercial Training, 48(3), 156-162.
Mandan, M., Hossein, S., & Furuzandeh, A. (2013). Investigating the impact of advertising on customer's behavioural intentions. Business and Economic Research, 3(1).
Majedul Huq, S. (2016). Unethical Practices of Advertising in Bangladesh: A Case Study on Some Selective Products. International Journal of Economics, Finance and Management Sciences, 4(1), p. 10.
Miller, D. (2002). Purchasing Power: Black Kids and American Consumer Culture. American Anthropologist, 104(4), pp. 1234-1235.
Mohamed Salim, N., and Abdullah, M. (2017). Measuring Reliability and Validity of Instrument: The Dimensions of Advertising Literacy in Determining the Advertising Literacy Index. Jurnal Komunikasi, Malaysian Journal of Communication, 33(1), pp. 280-293.
Nielsen, R. (2011). Cues to Quality in Quantitative Research Papers. Family and Consumer Sciences Research Journal, 40(1), pp. 85-89.
Noel, J., Babor, T., and Robaina, K. (2018). Reliability and validity of the Alcohol Marketing. Nordic Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, 35(2), pp.108-117.
Norizzuddin Nooh, M. (2018). Advertising Ethics: A Review. The Journal of Commerce, 4(3).
Nuseir, M. (2018). Impact of Misleading/False Advertising to Consumer Behaviour. International Journal of Economics and Business Research, 16(4), pp. 4-12.
Payne, D., and Pressley, M. (2013). A transcendent code of ethics for marketing professionals. International Journal of Law and Management, 55(1), pp. 55-73.
Prendergast, G. and Hwa, H., 2003. An Asian Perspective of Offensive Advertising on the Web. International Journal of Advertising, 22(3), pp.393-411.
Pressy & Milton., D. P. (2013). A transcendent code of ethics for marketing professionals. International Journal of Law and Management, 55(1), 55-73.
Rachbini, W. (2018). The Impact of Consumer Trust, Perceived Risk, Perceived Benefit on Purchase Intention and Purchase Decision. International Journal of Advanced Research, 6(1), pp. 1036-1044.
Romani, S. (2006). Price misleading advertising: Effects on trustworthiness toward the source of information and willingness to buy. Journal of Product & Brand Management, 15(2), pp. 130-138.
Russello, S. (2009). The impact of media exposure on self-esteem and body satisfaction in men and women. Journal of Interdisciplinary Undergraduate Research, 1(4).
Ryans, C. (1996). Consumer Resources. Journal of Small Business Management, 34, 63-65
Saguna, T. (2014). Customer Perception on Unethical Advertising - A Study on Reliability and Validity. International Journal of Economic and Business Review, 2(11).
Salehi, M., Saeidinia, M., and Aghaei, M. (2012). Business Ethics. International Journal of Scientific and Research Publications, 2(1).
Salkind, N. (2010). Encyclopedia Of Research Design. Thousand Oaks, Calif.: Sage.
Schierz, P., Schilke, O., and Wirtz, B. (2010). Understanding consumer acceptance of mobile payment services: An empirical analysis. Electronic Commerce Research and Applications, 9(3), pp. 209-216.
Schober, P., Boer, C., and Schwarte, L. (2018). Correlation Coefficients. Anesthesia & Analgesia, 126(5), pp. 1763-1768.
Shah, A., Zahoor, S., and Qureshi, I. (2019). Social Media and Purchasing Behavior: A Study of the Mediating Effect of Customer Relationships. Journal of Global Marketing, 32(2), pp. 93-115.
Sharma, B., and Sharma, N. (2014). Ethical Marketing Leadership: A Dyad Approach. International Journal on Leadership, 2(2), pp. 45-51.
Singh, D., and Vij, S. (2017). Socio-Economic and Ethical Implications of Advertising – A Perceptual Study.
Soh, H., Reid, L., and King, K. (2009). Measuring Trust In Advertising. Journal of Advertising, 38(2), pp. 83-104.
Srivastava, V., and Nandan, T. (2010). A Study of Perceptions in Society Regarding Unethical Practices in Advertising. South Asian Journal of Management, pp. 61-69.
Sroka, W., and Lőrinczy, M. (2015). The Perception of Ethics in Business: Analysis of Research Results. Procedia Economics and Finance, 34, pp. 156-163.
Sugget, M., and Paul, S. (2017). What Is Ethical And Unethical Advertising. [online] The Balance Careers. Available at:
Taber, K. (2017). The Use of Cronbach’s Alpha When Developing and Reporting Research Instruments in Science Education. Research in Science Education, 48(6), pp. 1273-1296.
Tan, T., Ling, L., and Theng, E. (2002). Gender-role portrayals in Malaysian and Singaporean television commercials: An international advertising perspective. Journal of Business Research, 55(10), pp. 853-861.
Ullah, N., and Hussain, M. (2015). Impact of Unethical Advertising, Misleading Information or Deceptive Advertising on Customer Purchasing Intention with Mediating Effect of Word of Mouth: Case of Pakistan. International Journal of Innovation and Economic Development, 1(4).
Voorveld, H., van Noort, G., Muntinga, D., and Bronner, F. (2018). Engagement with Social Media and Social Media Advertising: The Differentiating Role of Platform Type. Journal of Advertising, 47(1), pp. 38-54.
Wagner, G., Schramm-Klein, H., and Steinmann, S. (2020). Online retailing across e-channels and e-channel touchpoints: Empirical studies of consumer behavior in the multichannel e-commerce environment. Journal of Business Research, 107, pp. 256-270.
Waller, D., Fam, K., and Erdogan, Z. (2005). Advertising of Controversial Products: A Cross-Cultural Study. Journal of Consumer Marketing, 22(1), pp. 6-13.
Zviran, M. (2008). User's Perspectives on Privacy in Web-Based Applications. Journal of Computer Information Systems, 48(4), pp. 97-105.
Published
2023-03-01
How to Cite
QURESHI, Meerat Tayyab Mukhtar; GOPAL, Kanesh. The Impact of Unethical and False Advertising on Social Media Towards Consumer Buying Behaviour: An Examination Among Young Adults in Malaysia. International Journal of Business and Technology Management, [S.l.], v. 5, n. 1, p. 124-139, mar. 2023. ISSN 2682-7646. Available at: <https://myjms.mohe.gov.my/index.php/ijbtm/article/view/21645>. Date accessed: 21 feb. 2024.
Section
Articles