From famous ad campaigns to cultural movements, here are some of the moments that stand out over the last 100 years of advertising.
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Alex Osborn, the “O” in BBDO, is widely acknowledged as the father of brainstorming.
Three founders launch a new kind of strategy and ideas agency, Naked Communications.
4A’s StratFest is celebrating the 50th anniversary of account planning at the 2018 4A’s Strategy Festival taking place on October 9-11 in New York City. View all of the event highlights here: http://stratfest.aaaa.org/
The 4A’s absorbed APG-US. A year later renamed the 4A’s Account Planning Awards to Jay Chiat Planning Awards.
Jon Steel’s influential book, Truth, Lies & Advertising: the Art of Account Planning is published.
APG published the first How to Plan Advertising handbook.
Jay Chiat hired ex-BMP planner Jane Newman and launched account planning in the U.S.
The Account Planning Group was founded with Charles Channon as its first Chair.
Two start-up agencies, SJIP and TBWA London, followed BMP’s lead and built in planning. TBWA was led by Nigel Bogle, John Hegarty, and John Bartle, who in 1982, started their own planning-based creative agency.
At Stephen King’s insistence, JWT opened its Account Planning department, comprising 24 account planners.
Stanley Pollitt, former head of research and media at Interpublic agency Pritchard Wood & Patners, co-founded Boase Massimi Pollitt (now DDB). It launched with 11 people, including three account people and three researchers.
Jeremy Bullmore added The Planning Cycle to the T-Plan. Stephen King declared it to be “an absolutely universal aid to planning anything whatsover.”
Advertising music moved from jingles to what were called “song stories” when Advertising Hall of Famer Billy Davis joined McCann in 1968 as music director.
Dr. Herta Herzog became one of the founding partners in Jack Tinker & Partners, the industry’s first creative think tank, and then in 1961 was also name chairman of Interpublic’s Marplan research division.
McCann increased its percentage of female officers from zero to 10% in one fell swoop when it promoted four women to VP status in late 1949, warranting both Time magazine and New York Times coverage.
Deutsch’s 1994 ad “Dining Room” for Ikea marked a pivotal moment in advertising as the spot shares TV’s first gay couple.
The holding company award is based on the accumulated points won by the agencies within each group. Ogilvy & Mather won network of the year for the fifth time in a row, while Y&R took third place. Sir Martin Sorrell, founder and CEO of WPP, said of the honor: “In my cricketing career I have […]
Northeastern bastion of academia and professional sports morphed into a cool adtown thanks to the creative work being produced by agencies that had been around for decades. John Hancock’s “Real Life, Real Answers” (Hill Holliday) and Monster.com’s Super Bowl ad “When I Grow Up” (Mullen) were created in Beantown.
Sure there were some big brands (Target, General Mills) headquartered in the frozen Minnesota metropolis. But, once Pat Fallon opened his legendary shop, eventually the Midwest’s second city became downright trendy.
The 1960s through the late 1980s have been characterized as the “Golden Age of Advertising.” It was a time of big ideas, three-martini lunches and larger-than-life personalities who graced both the society pages and the business columns.
Many call Ogilvy the “Father of Advertising.” A British native, he created his first ad agency in the U.S. having never worked in advertising. He’s credited with the quote, “The customer isn’t a moron, she’s your wife.” His agency, Ogilvy & Mather, went on to be one of the largest—and most respected—in the world.
DDB went on to produce legendary ads for Volkswagen and Avis. Legions of creative people still adhere to the “Bernbachian” philosophy of crafting ads.
The 1970s ushered in a new era in the long line of popular jingles delivered by the ubiquitous fast food chain McDonald’s. 1974 marked their first try at getting into the rap game with the Big Mac track “Two All Beef Patties, Special Sauce, Lettuce, Cheese, Pickles, Onions on a Sesame Seed Bun.”
Facebook started as a way for Harvard students to check each other out. It grew to be the most ubiquitous social media platform of the early 21st century.
When Ogilvy took on the IBM account, the brand was taking a scattershot approach of selling its many products and services through several agencies.
This thing called the “World Wide Web” was no longer the playground of technogeeks. With the introduction of online services like Prodigy and America Online, suddenly everyone from schoolchildren doing homework to young moms seeking colic remedies were logging on to their (mostly) desktop computers.
It’s been twenty years since McCann-Erickson created the very first commercial for MasterCard’s long-running “Priceless” campaign. In it, we watched a dad being a dad – taking his son to his first baseball game, paying for the tickets, a hot dog, and a drink with his MasterCard.
Very few taglines express a brand’s truth – its reason for being, its driving purpose – quite as powerfully as Nike’s “Just Do It.”
The film marketer established itself as one of the great emotional advertisers with its “Times of Your Life” campaign. It captured life’s most sentimental moments.
It’s one of the most recognized car manufacturers’ slogans from around the globe, because it touches on a visceral truth: BMWs are simply thrilling to drive.
Coming off a miserable entrance into the low-calorie beer field, the Miller Brewing company needed its High Life brand to resonate when they turned to New York agency McCann-Erickson. Then art director Bob Lenz had the idea to get a retired athlete to endorse the lite beer in a commercial they shot at a bar in Manhattan.
Who doesn’t remember using their younger siblings as guinea pigs? In this classic ad from art director Bob Gage and copywriter Edie Vaughn of Doyle Dane Bernbach, it’s Little Mikey’s turn to take one for the team.
After numerous print campaigns featuring the likes of Mickey Mantle and Ben Hogan, sales for the durable Timex watch were disappointing. Things didn’t start to turn around for Timex Corps until 1956, with an idea for a television campaign from Hirshon-Garfield, the company’s agency at the time.
Diamonds haven’t been rare commodities since 1870, but for a long time they were viewed as symbols of wealth, power, and decadent romantic dreams. Too precious and expensive a stone to afford if you weren’t part of the wealthy elite.
It’s considered by many to be the most successful presidential ad campaign in history. It was also one of the first. “Prouder, Stronger, Better” – or as it’s commonly referred to, “It’s Morning in America Again” – was written and narrated by the late, great ad exec Hal Riney when he was part of the Tuesday Team, an independent all-star creative team that was formed for late President Ronald Reagan’s reelection campaign.
In November 1941, James Webb Young gave a speech to the 4A’s, setting a new mission of advertising solely for the benefit of the American public. The War Ad Council was formed the following February, on the heels of America’s entry into World War II. It would be the industry’s way to contribute to the war effort and public interest using some of the sharpest creative minds on Madison Ave.
Mad Men premiered on AMC in 2007, thus reminding a world that otherwise may have forgotten about the peak of one of the flashiest and most lucrative industries.
Legend tells that Bill Gates paid something like $14 million to the Rolling Stones to use their song “Start Me Up” in the very first Microsoft television commercial.
While Budweiser was making ads directed towards young, party crazed dudes, Dos Equis opted to feature a Hemingway-esque figure to aspire to. The most interesting man in the world.
By the mid 80s, Nike had surpassed $1 billion in corporate sales, chasing Reebok as the world’s number one athletic shoe manufacturer. While revamping their brand with Wieden + Kennedy, they began working with NBA star Michael Jordan on a Nike Air campaign the advertising agency dubbed “Revolution in Motion.”
There’s no denying that Barry Manilow was a master hit maker in the 70s and 80s. From his very first, “Mandy” (1974) to “Copacabana” (1978) and “Read ‘em and Weep” (1983), his tunes seemed to get into your head and stay there.
These simple lyrics, scribbled in just one hour by career-jingle writer Richard Trentlage, make up one of the longest running and most popular jingles in American history.
Ask any old timer from the Mad Men era what they think of modern advertising, and there’s a good chance they’ll scoff in your face (trust us, we tried). But one brand that can’t be denied, at least in their effectiveness, is GEICO.
He’s the coolest, pinkest, most energetically obnoxious toy bunny around. Energizer brand batteries rolled out the Energizer Bunny in 1989, and he did way more than hide eggs once a year.
“Introducing the world’s newest, silliest, hamburger-eating-est clown…Ronald McDonald!” Scared of clowns? Maybe you should avoid time traveling back to 1963.
The ads featured a sweet, baby faced mascot named Speedy who would sing a jingle that told of the relief brought forth by the effervescent tablets.
As the feminist movement was gaining in strength and popularity, the Phillip Morris Company teamed up with the famed Leo Burnett Agency to capitalize on shifting attitudes. The campaign was for their new brand of ultra-smooth Virginia Slims cigarettes.
Is love two straight white people? Is it two women? Is it two black fathers and their child? A better question, one answered by the tagline of the campaign, is why do we feel the need to label love at all?
“Great advertising holds up a mirror to who we are and where we’re going,” said Donny Deutsch shortly after a Cheerios commercial by Saatchi and Saatchi aired in 2013.
When Wieden & Kennedy rebranded Old Spice, they launched a campaign that helped redefine the brand. “The Man Your Man Could Smell Like” took the concept of manliness from scruffy and expected to classy and cool.
It was the first Spanish-language commercial ever broadcast in prime time on a major American network. It was also a powerful message of hope, using the simple joy of the game as its vehicle.
Back in the 1950’s, supermarkets were reluctant to stock the canned and packaged Caribbean foods produced by Goya Foods Inc. But Paula Green, president of Paula Green Advertising Inc., changed that.
Since it was filmed on a hilltop in Italy forty-six years ago, it has been widely said to be “the world’s most famous ad,” ever. But the story behind the optimistic, infectious tune and its subsequent commercial starts out a little less harmoniously.
In 1956, Vincent T. Cullers set out to change the industry. Specifically, to make it wake up and pay attention to a market it had been underserving for long enough.
When Ogilvy and Mather was tasked with evolving the credit card giant’s upscale image, the agency wisely cast Jerry Seinfeld in a series of ads for the American Express Green Card in 1992.
Then just fifteen-year-old Shields had already risen to stardom as a young actress and model by the start of the eighties when she was infamously recruited by designer Calvin Klein to appear in a series of overtly sexy print and television ads.
In October 1979, America discovered that all “Mean” Joe Greene needed after a hard game was a Coke to make him smile.
Before she was the other ‘Charlie’s Angel’, model-turned-actress Shelley Hack was the chic, independent blonde bombshell that launched Revlon’s Charlie perfume.
At one time in American history, there was a war on margarine…we’d argue that it was former First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt’s endorsement that allowed it to win the hearts and minds of everyday Americans.
Quality content must be useful, entertaining, and/or beautiful. At least that’s what Bob Greenberg of Robert Greenberg & Associates (R/GA) once said. And with the creation of the game changing Nike+, R/GA achieved all of these things, particularly the first two.
Although the Target Bullseye was created in 1962, it wasn’t until years later that the logo met an agency that could give it a whole new meaning.
In 1951, Chevrolet signed a deal to sponsor The Dinah Shore Show on NBC, during the height of her career as one of America’s most popular singers and television personalities.
When Jay Chiat and Italian designer Gaetano Pesce set out to create a more collaborative creative workspace, the first ever “open office” in advertising was formed for Chiat/Day’s New York outpost. Just the thought of an open floor layout that nixed offices and assigned seating was enough to spark much debate.
There was a time when every American kid knew that if he ate his Wheaties and worked hard, maybe one day he could be just like Michael Jordan. Or Jackie Joyner. Or Billie Jean.
When a campaign makes over 1,500 versions of an ad, there’s bound to be a few great stories attached. Absolut Vodka is a prime example.
In a taxi cab on the way to a campaign concept meeting at Wells Rich Greene, Milton Glaser scribbled a last minute idea on the back of an envelope. It read “I ♡ NY.”
It was a time when making a fashion statement with speed, style, and design were the top considerations for buying a car. It was also the perfect time for DDB and Volkswagen to utterly destroy the status quo.
James Montgomery Flagg’s poster of Uncle Sam was just one of 46 illustrations he completed for war efforts before his death in 1960. Dubbed “The most famous poster in the world,” this commanding image of the fictional Uncle Sam pointing his finger directly at the viewer spoke to Americans.
A true pioneer, a fearless adventurer – and a good sport. Earhart was the first female aviator to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean, and the face of Lucky Strike cigarettes, even though she wasn’t a smoker…
Han·gry (ˈhaNGɡrē/) adjective/informal: Bad-tempered or irritable, as a result of hunger. Although this hybrid word may be relatively new, the sensation of hanger has been around since the dawn of time.
March 2016, Nancy Hill, 4A’s President and CEO, announced goals on promoting gender equality in the ad business and tackling the media transparency issue.
Strategize the rainbow, taste the rainbow. At first glance, one might think that these Skittle ads were just a product of the weirdest sh** the campaign team could fit into 30 second spots.
Simple. Effective. Funny. These three characteristics defined the first great campaign of the new millennium, from TBWA/Chiat/Day.
#LikeAGirl was to changed perceptions about what it means to be a girl, in a way that would feel engaging and inspire renewed confidence in young millennials.
Another agency-defining campaign for Wieden + Kennedy Portland was the 25-year partnership with ESPN’s Sportscenter. Together, they produced over 400 spots. Executed in a “deadpan documentary” style, many of the ads were very inside baseball (pun intended), meaning that they relied on knowledge of sports to understand the punchline.
Before he “switched to Sprint” Paul Marcarelli started his 10 year contract with Verizon as their test man in 2002.
Ogilvy&Mather teamed up with Dove to launch the Campaign for Real Beauty in 2004, bringing to the fore the narrow definitions of female beauty. In doing so, a line of simple soaps and lotions took a risky step outside of the beauty and hygiene comfort zone.
This was the decade of the great creative Super Bowl face-off from two of the game’s largest advertisers. Overall, Pepsi won, but as the 1990s ended, Budweiser dominated.
Perhaps the most famous commodity brand campaign in history, “Got Milk?” launched its first spot in 1993. The ad featured a hilarious storyline involving a Hamilton-Burr history buff who couldn’t answer a Hamilton-Burr radio contest question because his mouth was full of PB&J. If only he had a glass of milk!
In 1986, she became the first female 4A’s Chairman of the Board, on which she served till 1988. Beers is known for her strides to help break the glass ceiling for working women, a key topic of her book I’d Rather Be in Charge.
Entering into the 1980’s, Rolling Stone had a reputation as the nitty grittiest of magazines. Fallon’s “Perception. Reality” campaign set out to change this by cleverly highlighting (in over 60 print executions) how the magazine’s readers were no longer hippies, but were now affluent and mainstream.
When Clara Peller first said “Where’s the Beef?” in a humorous ad for Wendy’s in 1984, the company had no idea the catchphrase would become a household expression.
The “Fast Talker Campaign” for Federal Express featured John Moschitta’s rapid fire, non-stop speaking about the fast-paced business world. Its launch is still considered one of the greatest comedy spots of all time.
2017 Revisited. For the 4A’s 50th Anniversary in 1967, Jim Nelson, of Hoefer Dieterich & Brown created this “back to the future” view of what the advertising industry would be like in 2017.
The founder and editor of Ms. Magazine gave a powerful speech at the 1973 4A’s Annual Meeting. Titled “What Do Women Expect,” she fervently and factually described the modern plight of women, minorities, and society as a whole.
An early example of innovative out-of-home advertising was executed by the brushless Burma Shave Company. They did it by creating the concept of sequential billboards. In 1926, strings of rhyming Burma Shave billboards popped up all across the US, taking the company from virtually unheard of to the number two shaving cream company in the US.
At the age of 23, young female copywriter Ilon Specht of McCann Erickson had no idea the longevity her simple line would have.
Burger King released Subservient Chicken as a launch for their new chicken sandwich, taking the tagline “Chicken Your Way” to an all too literal place.
From 2001-2002, Clive Owen teamed up with BMW to take action packed chase scenes to a whole new level of bad-assary. The Hire, a series of 8 short films designed to subtly highlight the auto brand’s features, was perhaps the earliest successful example of a brand producing video content specifically for internet release.
One of the 20th century’s most significant works of literature, George Orwell’s 1984 has always been more than a literary marvel—it was a cryptic prediction, too. So, when Apple Computer chose to channel the novel as inspiration in Macintosh’s 1984 Super Bowl launch, the ad became an instant success.
The first female copywriter, Helen Lansdowne, was inducted into the Advertising Hall of Fame in 1967, three years after her death. Her 1911 line “A skin you love to touch” for a soap ad is considered to be the first use of sex appeal in advertising.
Upon founding Wells, Rich, Greene in 1966, Mary Wells Lawrence became the first woman to found, own, and run a major agency and the first female CEO of a company traded on the Big Board of the New York Stock Exchange.
There are some stories the hit show Mad Men didn’t tell. Perhaps most notable is that of Caroline Jones, the African-American secretary turned copywriter trainee turned advertising executive.
Turns out Dunkin’ Donuts wasn’t the original fuel for the USA. “America runs on Bulova time” was the line accompanying the first ever (legal and continental) TV commercial. Airing on WNBT on July 1, 1941, the 10-second spot for Bulova Watch Company was simply a graphic and voiceover designed by Biow Company.
After graduating from Barnard College, Phyllis Robinson had various copywriting jobs before securing a spot at Grey Advertising.
With the outbreak of the second World War in 1939 came a huge depletion of the industrialized workforce. Enter Rosie the Riveter, a powerful character created by a government campaign aimed at recruiting women to join the munitions industry.
The first radio commercial ever was broadcast on WEAF New York. Direct selling was prohibited, so radio host H.M. Blackwell created his own “indirect direct” method.
On June 4th, 1917, at City Hall in St. Louis, Missouri, the American Association of Advertising Agencies became official.