Why marketing junk food to children hurts the marketers?

There is absolutely no doubt that childhood obesity has reached crisis levels. There is nothing evil about marketing and advertising but it has to be done ethically. For instance, there is no rationale for marketing to children and I include not just junk food (most cereals for children, the way they are currently manufactured, are junk food) but all product categories. Similarly, there is no rationale for marketing prescription drugs directly to patients (through the so-called direct to consumer advertising). The good news is that companies are yielding to pressure and are realizing what damage they were inflicting on their customers. As Marketing 101 tells you, when you knowingly hurt your customers, you don’t win.