Advertising and popular culture
Every weeknight when I turn on the TV to watch CSI I mute the ads. I see SUV ads, Vonage ads, Pepsi and whatever other stuff they're trying to sell me.
When I check my email (I have a Gmail account), I usually have 1 or 2 new spam in my inbox, and about 120 new spams in my spambox. At the end of the month, my spambox auto-deletes all spam over a month old. I currently have over 4000 spams in there. I check any new spams as spam and then go about my business of answering emails/hatemail.
Then I read an interesting statistic: Advertising profits have slumped during the last three years in the United States. That doesn't mean that advertising companies are going bankrupt (although some of them might eventually), what it means is that companies that are advertising don't seem to be making as many sales.
For example, if the Widget Company spends $100 million on a new advertising campaign and usually makes about $500 million in profits, whats happened is that instead of making $500 M, they are only making $400 M instead.
Obviously people aren't selling Widgets, but the principle is the same. Companies seem to be going into an "advertising backslide", almost as if we were in a depression.
Except we're not in a depression. True, the US economy did SHRINK 0.5% during 2005, but that's not a depression. It's a minor bump on the economic radar.
These days you see advertising EVERYWHERE. We use Google Adsense in order to make sure the Lilith Gallery Network makes a profit and can afford to pay for its server/etc. Admittedly we also fall into this trap of using advertising in order to pay the bills, and we can admit to it without being hypocritical.
But what about the rest of the world? Advertising really is seemingly everywhere. Dentist offices often get free magazine subscriptions because the advertising in the magazine is a good way of selling products to consumers that might not see it otherwise. It also advertises the magazine itself simply by "being there".
During the whole history the aim of advertising is to inform and to convince, hasn't changed. Advertisement which we know now is a modern phenomenon with its roots in deep past. One of the greatest events of the history of advertisement was the invention of demountable fonts by Johann Gutenberg in 1440. His invention gave life to the new carrier of advertisement: printed posters, leaflets and newspaper announcements.
Albert Lasker, the father of modern advertisement, told that advertisement is “a printed kind of trade”. But this definition was given before the invention of radio and TV.
Advertising is a transfer of information, usually paid and has the characteristic of persuasion, about production, service or ideas by famous advertiser with the help of different carriers.
Advertising occupies a major place in American society. Linked to the bedrock principles that shaped American nation - free speech, competition and individual choice - it has served the public since colonial times as a source of vital information about their open, market-based economy.
Advertising is a positive force in our free society. Protected by the First Amendment, it informs the public, promotes competition, fuels economic growth, creates jobs and fosters a wide array of media choices for consumers.
The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution states: “Congress shall make no law…abridging the freedom of speech or of the press…” In a long series of cases, the U.S. Supreme Court has conclusively extended this protection to “commercial speech.” As a result, advertising of lawful products and services, conducted in a non-misleading way, is fully protected by the U.S. Constitution.
According to a landmark study conducted by the highly regarded consulting firm Global Insights under the direction of a Nobel Laureate in Economics, advertising is a remarkably powerful economic force. Nationally, it generates over $5 trillion in economic activity, or approximately 20 percent of U.S. total economic activity. Sales of products and services stimulated by advertising support 21 million jobs, or 15 percent of the total jobs in the country. In addition, another Nobel Laureate in economics, George Stigler, also has noted that advertising is a critical force in fostering economic efficiency and competition throughout the US economy.
Advertising enables consumers to enjoy a vast array of media choices. Commercial television and radio are available to the public at no cost, thanks to advertising. In addition, advertising revenues provide substantial support for most print publications, large portions of the Internet and cable, giving people access to immense information and entertainment content at little cost. This support helps democratize access to information. The public, wherever they are located geographically and regardless of their income level, have more information available to them than at any other time in history.
Advertising informs consumers about product choices available in the marketplace. Increasingly, it also educates them about issues that affect their lives. Recognizing the power of advertising to educate, the industry annually voluntarily devotes multi-billions of dollars worth of creative and media resources to high-visibility public service campaigns.
Vast, affordable media options enrich our society and underpin a core American value: the democratization of knowledge and information. Advertising plays a critical role in fostering this abundance of information, as it provides the financial foundation for the immense number of media and Web services available to U.S. consumers.
Commercial broadcasting, both radio and television, is supported solely by revenues from the sale of advertising time and space. Other types of media, including the Internet, newspapers, magazines and large segments of cable television rely heavily on advertising for a major portion of their revenues. Indeed, without advertising dollars, many of today's media outlets would not exist, and the cost of those that survived would be substantially higher for the consumer.
Advertising revenue has helped lead to a tremendous proliferation of media choices. For example, television viewers in the early 1950's and 60's could watch only three broadcast networks. Today, viewers can choose from multiple broadcast networks, hundreds of cable channels and direct broadcast satellite programming.
The advertising-supported business model has also fueled the explosive growth of the Internet, creating a low barrier-to entry for an immense number of entrepreneurial online businesses. According to research firm comScore, more than 200 million Americans age 15 or older use search engines each month. These consumers are going to the Internet to access - at no cost - all types of content: from news and health, to sports and entertainment, to job listings and travel recommendations. The most popular Internet search engines, news outlets, entertainment portals, photo and video sharing services and social networking sites all give consumers free access to vast content and online experiences thanks to their advertising revenues.
The online media has developed at an extraordinary pace. It took 38 years for radio to reach 50 million Americans; network television took 13 years and cable television took 10 years. It took only about three years for the Internet to reach 50 million users in the U.S.
According to the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), there was $23.4 billion spent on advertising and paid search on the Internet in 2008. To put this in perspective, the Internet today is a bigger advertising medium than radio, outdoor advertising and about the same as consumer magazines. (www.iab.net).
However, policymakers need to refrain from imposing undue restrictions that would limit the effectiveness of interactive advertising, thereby diminishing the flow of ad dollars into this promising new media channel.
The economic health of most of American media, including the online marketplace, rests primarily on the strong financial foundation provided by advertising.
You see that modern economy, especially advertising, as a part of modern economy not only in the USA, is much connected with pop culture: TV, Internet, literature, art and etc. This phenomenon is very interesting. The problem of advertising is very important for economics because you need ads for promoting your production, especially if you only start your own business. Everybody knows that ad is connected with the culture: TV, magazines, newspapers, radio, even films an so on.
So in my work I'll try to study the problem of affecting advertising on pop culture in America. At first we'll learn the definitions of advertisement and pop culture.
Advertising is a form of communication intended to persuade its viewers, readers or listeners to take some action. It usually includes the name of a product or service and how that product or service could benefit the consumer, to persuade potential customers to purchase or to consume that particular brand. Modern advertising developed with the rise of mass production in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. a b c "JEG - Sign In Page". Joeg.oxfordjournals.org. Retrieved 2009-04-20.
Commercial advertisers often seek to generate increased consumption of their products or services through branding, which involves the repetition of an image or product name in an effort to associate related qualities with the brand in the minds of consumers. Different types of media can be used to deliver these messages, including traditional media such as newspapers, magazines, television, radio, outdoor or direct mail. Advertising may be placed by an advertising agency on behalf of a company or other organization.
Organizations that spend money on advertising promoting items other than a consumer product or service include political parties, interest groups, religious organizations and governmental agencies. Nonprofit organizations may rely on free modes of persuasion, such as a public service announcement.
Money spent on advertising has declined in recent years. In 2007, spending on advertising was estimated at more than $150 billion in the United States "TNS Media Intelligence". Tns-mi.com. 2007-01-08. Retrieved 2009-04-20. and $385 billion worldwide, "Global Entertainment and Media Outlook: 2006-2010, a report issued by global accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers". Pwc.com. Retrieved 2009-04-20. and the latter to exceed $450 billion by 2010.
Egyptians used papyrus to make sales messages and wall posters. Commercial messages and political campaign displays have been found in the ruins of Pompeii and ancient Arabia. Lost and found advertising on papyrus was common in Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome. Wall or rock painting for commercial advertising is another manifestation of an ancient advertising form, which is present to this day in many parts of Asia, Africa, and South America. The tradition of wall painting can be traced back to Indian rock art paintings that date back to 4000 BC. Bhatia (2000). Advertising in Rural India: Language, Marketing Communication, and Consumerism, 62+68 History tells us that Out-of-home advertising and billboards are the oldest forms of advertising.
As the towns and cities of the Middle Ages began to grow, and the general populace was unable to read, signs that today would say cobbler, miller, tailor or blacksmith would use an image associated with their trade such as a boot, a suit, a hat, a clock, a diamond, a horse shoe, a candle or even a bag of flour. Fruits and vegetables were sold in the city square from the backs of carts and wagons and their proprietors used street callers (town criers) to announce their whereabouts for the convenience of the customers.
As education became an apparent need and reading, as well as printing, developed advertising expanded to include handbills. In the 17th century advertisements started to appear in weekly newspapers in England. These early print advertisements were used mainly to promote books and newspapers, which became increasingly affordable with advances in the printing press; and medicines, which were increasingly sought after as disease ravaged Europe. However, false advertising and so-called "quack" advertisements became a problem, which ushered in the regulation of advertising content.
As the economy expanded during the 19th century, advertising grew alongside. In the United States, the success of this advertising format eventually led to the growth of mail-order advertising.
In June 1836, French newspaper La Presse was the first to include paid advertising in its pages, allowing it to lower its price, extend its readership and increase its profitability and the formula was soon copied by all titles. Around 1840, Volney Palmer established a predecessor to advertising agencies in Boston. Eskilson, Stephen J. (2007). Graphic Design: A New History. New Haven, Connecticut: Yale University Press. p. 58. ISBN 978-0-300-12011-0.Around the same time, in France, Charles-Louis Havas extended the services of his news agency, Havas to include advertisement brokerage, making it the first French group to organize. At first, agencies were brokers for advertisement space in newspapers. N. W. Ayer & Son was the first full-service agency to assume responsibility for advertising content. N.W. Ayer opened in 1869, and was located in Philadelphia.5
At the turn of the century, there were few career choices for women in business; however, advertising was one of the few. Since women were responsible for most of the purchasing done in their household, advertisers and agencies recognized the value of women's insight during the creative process. In fact, the first American advertising to use a sexual sell was created by a woman - for a soap product. Although tame by today's standards, the advertisement featured a couple with the message "The skin you love to touch". Advertising Slogans, Woodbury Soap Company, "The skin you love to touch", J. Walter Thompson Co., 1911
In the early 1920s, the first radio stations were established by radio equipment manufacturers and retailers who offered programs in order to sell more radios to consumers. As time passed, many non-profit organizations followed suit in setting up their own radio stations, and included: schools, clubs and civic groups. McChesney, Robert, Educators and the Battle for Control of U.S. Broadcasting, 1928-35, Rich Media, Poor Democracy, ISBN 0-252-02448-6 (1999) When the practice of sponsoring programs was popularized, each individual radio program was usually sponsored by a single business in exchange for a brief mention of the business' name at the beginning and end of the sponsored shows. However, radio station owners soon realized they could earn more money by selling sponsorship rights in small time allocations to multiple businesses throughout their radio station's broadcasts, rather than selling the sponsorship rights to single businesses per show.
This practice was carried over to television in the late 1940s and early 1950s. A fierce battle was fought between those seeking to commercialize the radio and people who argued that the radio spectrum should be considered a part of the commons - to be used only non-commercially and for the public good. The United Kingdom pursued a public funding model for the BBC, originally a private company, the British Broadcasting Company, but incorporated as a public body by Royal Charter in 1927. In Canada, advocates like Graham Spry were likewise able to persuade the federal government to adopt a public funding model, creating the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. However, in the United States, the capitalist model prevailed with the passage of the Communications Act of 1934 which created the Federal Communications Commission.7 To placate the socialists, the U.S. Congress did require commercial broadcasters to operate in the "public interest, convenience, and necessity". "Public Interest, Convenience and Necessity". Museum.tv. Retrieved 2009-04-20. Public broadcasting now exists in the United States due to the 1967 Public Broadcasting Act which led to the Public Broadcasting Service and National Public Radio.
In the early 1950s, the DuMont Television Network began the modern trend of selling advertisement time to multiple sponsors. Previously, DuMont had trouble finding sponsors for many of their programs and compensated by selling smaller blocks of advertising time to several businesses. This eventually became the standard for the commercial television industry in the United States. However, it was still a common practice to have single sponsor shows, such as The United States Steel Hour. In some instances the sponsors exercised great control over the content of the show - up to and including having one's advertising agency actually writing the show. The single sponsor model is much less prevalent now, a notable exception being the Hallmark Hall of Fame.
The 1960s saw advertising transform into a modern approach in which creativity was allowed to shine, producing unexpected messages that made advertisements more tempting to consumers' eyes. The Volkswagen ad campaign--featuring such headlines as "Think Small" and "Lemon" (which were used to describe the appearance of the car)--ushered in the era of modern advertising by promoting a "position" or "unique selling proposition" designed to associate each brand with a specific idea in the reader or viewer's mind. This period of American advertising is called the Creative Revolution and its archetype was William Bernbach who helped create the revolutionary Volkswagen ads among others. Some of the most creative and long-standing American advertising dates to this period.
The late 1980s and early 1990s saw the introduction of cable television and particularly MTV. Pioneering the concept of the music video, MTV ushered in a new type of advertising: the consumer tunes in for the advertising message, rather than it being a by-product or afterthought. As cable and satellite television became increasingly prevalent, specialty channels emerged, including channels entirely devoted to advertising, such as QVC, Home Shopping Network, and ShopTV Canada.
Marketing through the Internet opened new frontiers for advertisers and contributed to the "dot-com" boom of the 1990s. Entire corporations operated solely on advertising revenue, offering everything from coupons to free Internet access. At the turn of the 21st century, a number of websites including the search engine Google, started a change in online advertising by emphasizing contextually relevant, unobtrusive ads intended to help, rather than inundate, users. This has led to a plethora of similar efforts and an increasing trend of interactive advertising.
The share of advertising spending relative to GDP has changed little across large changes in media. For example, in the U.S. in 1925, the main advertising media were newspapers, magazines, signs on streetcars, and outdoor posters. Advertising spending as a share of GDP was about 2.9 percent. By 1998, television and radio had become major advertising media. Nonetheless, advertising spending as a share of GDP was slightly lower--about 2.4 percent. "Annual U.S. Advertising Expenditure Since 1919". Galbithink.org. 2008-09-14. Retrieved 2009-04-20.