An advertorial is an ad that imitates editorial content or presents content in an editorial-like format, such as using text, tables, or figures in a manner similar to the journal’s editorial content. During the early 1990s, following a decline in the biomedical advertising market, advertorials became more common. The ASME developed guidelines for special advertising sections,27 which may help a publication maintain its integrity if it publishes advertorials (see Table 3).
Table 3. ASME Guidelines for Special Advertising Sectionsa
a Adapted and reprinted with permission from the American Society of Magazine Editors.27
Companies may submit advertisements that provide information on a topic pertaining to a product the company markets (or plans to market) but that do not name any commercial product. It is essential that such ads are clearly labeled “Advertisement,” have a different format from the journal’s editorial content, and include a prominent display of the company name and/or logo so that readers can quickly ascertain that the information is an advertisement from the company and is not part of the journal’s editorial content.