Once upon a time, a thousand years ago, survival was top of the mind priority, people bartered. Mass production of goods was nonexistent. Most people were illiterate and hence there was no need for advertising. “Word of mouth” was all that was needed and all that mattered.

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When the Chinese invented a thing called Paper, way back in 105 AD, this was a material used to wrap images and bronze artifacts till Europe got its first paper mill in 1275 and the printing press was invented in 1440. Now, for the first time, the recordings of information no longer belonged to just an elite few. The first news paper ad was published in 1650 seeking information about 12 stolen horses. In 1704, the Boston news letter asked the readers to place advertisements for Real estate, ships or goods for sale and thus began the journey of mass advertising.

Fast forward all this to just before the beginning of the 20th century and then…BOOM. We have the Europeans and Americans ready to mass produce goods, both wanted and unwanted and ready to start pummeling people with marketing messages for the next 100 years.

Advertisements, to reach their current form have gone through a huge evolution process over the last century.

Ownership to stewardship: From advising the customer about what has to be done to guiding the customer on the benefits of using a product. A good example for this are the series of Lifebuoy ad’s, starting from a toilet cake for sportsmen to kill germs to a lemon scented family soap for the whole family.

Consumer Consciousness: The customers have also become very conscious about what they buy. So, before getting associated with a brand just because someone else is using it, the customer now searches for options, looks for the ad, views the POP material, cares about packaging and colors and then decides whether it fits his personality before even actually trying out a product.


Beyond Advertising: Branding extends beyond advertising and fulfills the customers’ needs beyond geographical barriers. Eg: A Mc Donald uses the same type of branding and store lay out although the products may vary from country to country.

Wants and Needs: Wants are replacing needs. Consumers are becoming more demanding about what they want. No one just uses a mobile for just calling nowadays, though it is essentially meant for that very purpose. It is now a style statement. This shift can be attributed to easy availability of funds from banks.

Lean Backward to lean forward: Brands have started relying more on a Lean forward strategy for advertising rather than a Lean backward, as is used in conventional print or TV ads. The lean forward strategy as used online or in Social media marketing makes the consumer more involved and interactive. The time spent on looking at the ad has also increased substantially in the process. A recent ad for Moto G placed online has made the customer much more involved than a full page print ad for the same product.


Technology has changed the dynamics of the business world; and in the advertising industry, specifically, necessitated a move from “old” marketing techniques to “new” marketing techniques. The number one fastest growing advertising channel is the Internet.


With the emerging technologies such as mobile and the impact of social media platforms, it is far more effective for advertisers to utilize the web and market to consumers in the format that is easiest for them. People are no longer watching television when it airs; they are no longer listening to traditional radio; and they are no longer surfing the web only at home. The audience is no longer an audience; consumers control the conversation and they choose which advertisers may speak to them.


Advertisers must adapt and modify their con-tent to the way that the audience is consuming. The young people in “Generation Y,” “echo boomers” and “millennials” are increasingly immune to the clichés of prime-time television and radio, and they mentally tune out these nuisances. Online, however, they may accept advertising if it is unobtrusive, relevant, and fun. Insofar as they took some action to invite the advertisement, they may even find it useful. As Glenn Beck, conservative commentator and media entrepreneur recently cautioned both content providers and advertisers at the 2011 Advertising Age Media Evolved Conference in New York: “I don’t know anybody under 30 who is watching television. My kids don’t watch television. . . . The problem is that we are at a split right now. The generation that is slightly over 50—they’re not using iPad. They don’t get it. They don’t want it. The younger generation, that’s [television] not their comfort zone; it’s a stupid box that you’re tied to.”

Now, as an advertiser it become increasingly important to address the right target group. While many may argue that internet advertising and Google analytics helps you place your ad in the exact place you would expect it to be and at the exact time, what do you do to the 50+ group?


This means that while internet advertising, mobile advertising and social media is picking up, the traditional forms of advertising like the news paper, magazine, radio and television cannot be ignored. Yes, the split in the marketing budget of the companies is definitely getting reduced in the latter.

The advent of social media in combination with the interactive capabilities of smart phones has rewritten the book on advertising. With the enormous increase in the popularity of social media platforms such as YouTube, Face book, MySpace, blogs, and Twitter, millions of potential consumers form a ready audience for advertisers.


Not only can target demographic groups be easily located (geo-targeting,) but the cost factors are quite economical when compared with costs for traditional advertising. Marketing through a conversation remains novel: establishing a strong social media presence in a “community” is quite different from shooting commercials and buying air time or spending money taking out ads. Doing so takes significant amounts of effort and diligence, but companies today that are communicating directly with their customers and taking the time to build relationships will stay competitive and survive in an ever-changing marketplace.



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Author:  buddingmanagers
Posted On:  Tuesday, 10 June, 2014 - 16:45

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