Tag Archives: advertising history

Advertising Timeline

3000 BC-AD1

3000BC Written advertisement offering “whole gold coin” for runaway slave “Shem”

500 BC Political and trade graffiti on Pompeii walls

AD 1 First uppercase lettering appears on Greek buildings


AD 500-1799

1455 Frist printed Bible

1472 First printed ad in English tacked on London Church doors

1544 Claude Garamond, first “typefounder” perfects a roman typeface that bears his name and still used today

1600s Newspaper emerge

1650 First newspaper ad offers reward for stolen horses

1655 First use of the term “advertising”

1662 London Gazette offers first advertising supplement

1704 First ads in America published in the Boston Newsletter

1742 First magazine ad

In the late-1700s, the Industrial Revolution began in England and by the early1800s it had reached North America.



1841 Volney B. Palmer becomes first “newspaper agent” (advertising agent) in America

1844 First magazine ad runs

1869 Francis W. Ater founds ad agency bearing his father’s name, N. W. Ayer & Sons, in Philadelphia. He initiates first “for commission” ad contract (1876), first market survey for an ad (1879), and first on-staff creative services (art in 1890, copywriting in 1892)

1888 Printers’ link first U.S. publication for ad profession



1900 Psychologists study the attention-getting and persuasive qualities of advertising

1900 Northwestern University is first to offer advertising as a discipline

1903 Scripps-McRae League of Newspapers appoints ad censor, rejects $500,000 in ads in first year.

1905 First national ad plan is for the “Gillette Safety Razor.”

1905-1930s Claude Hopkins develops scientific mail-order copy testing

1911 First “truth in advertising” codes are established by what is now called the American Advertising Federation (AAF)

1914 FTC Act passed



1920s Albert Lasker, “father” of modern advertising, calls advertising “salesmanship in print.” First ad testimonials by movie stars appear. Full-color printing is available in magazines.

1922 First radio ad solves radio’s need for financing.

1924 N. W. Ayer produces first sponsored radio broadcast, the “Eveready Hour.”

1929-1933 the Great Depression

1930 Advertising Age magazine is founded.

1938 Wheeler-Lea amendments to FTC Act of 1938 grant FTC further power to curb false ad practices

1939-1945 WWII



1946 America has 12 TV stations broadcasting to the public.

1947 Lanham Trademark Act protects brand names and slogans.

1948 46 TV stations are operating and 300 others are awaiting FCC approval.

1950 First political ads, by Gov. Dewey of New York, appear on TV.

1950s David Ogilvy’s “Hathaway man” and “Commander Whitehead” become popular ad personae

1950s Rosser Reeves develops the unique selling proposition (USP) or unique selling point



1960s Doyle Dane Bernbach’s “Think small” ad for American Volkswagen becomes one of the

most famous ads of the decade, establishing a strong market position for the smallest European import. The agency’s slogan for Avis, “We’re only No. 2, so we try harder,” is also very successful. New York’s Madison Avenue becomes known worldwide as the center of the advertising world and features the best in advertising creativity.

1960s Leo Burnett creates brand icons and “inherent drama:

1950s David Ogilvy develops research-based image advertising and storytelling

1960s Bill Bernbach focuses on the art of persuasion

1967 First Super Bowl is telecast. Cost of a 30-second spot: $40,000.



1971 Armed services begin first advertising for the new “all-volunteer” military (“Be all that you can be in the Army”).

1972 The Ad Age article “Positioning: The Battle for Your Mind” by Al Ries and Jack Trout

details the strategy of positioning that dominates the 1970s.

1973 Oil shortages begin period of “demarketing,” ads aimed at slowing demand.

1970s (late) Growth in self-indulgence, signified by popularity of self-fulfillment activities, spurs some agencies into making infomercials.



1980s Ad agency megamergers take place worldwide.

1982 First edition of Contemporary Advertising is published.

1984 The Internet (government controlled since 1973) is turned over to the private sector.

1986 Marketing Warfare by Al Ries and Jack Trout portrays marketing in terms of classic warfare manual written by General Clausewitz in 1831.

1989 Tim Berners-Lee invents the World Wide Web, allowing surfers to browse the Internet.



1990s A recession leads marketers to shift funds from advertising to sales promotion.

1994 Media glut leads to market fragmentation; network TV is no longer sole medium for reaching total marketplace. Ad professions adopt integrated marketing communications (IMC) as the new strategy to build market relationships.

1997 AOL launches Instant Messenger (AIM), allowing online chat and opening the door to social networking.

1998 Google begins answering search queries.



2000 The Internet is the fastest-growing new ad medium since TV, with 400 million users.

2002 A general economic slump hammers ad spending.

2005 Online advertisers spend $8.32 billion to reach the 170 million wired U.S. residents.

2007 The iPhone takes social media mobile.

2007 U.S. ad agency revenue surges 8.6% to $31 billion, led by double-digit growth in digital advertising.

2009 Broad global recession leads to cutbacks in ad expenditures.



2010 The Old Spice Guy viral campaign achieves 113 million online views.

2012 Google captures over 30% of the $100 billion digital advertising market.

2013 Growth in global advertising is 3.5%, led by mobile advertising, expanding by 67%.

2013 The Man of Steel movie collects $160 million in product placements, paid by 100 promotional partners.

2015 YouTube is watched daily by more people, ages 18-49, than any cable network.

2016 Fiftieth Super Bowl




Weekly Reading Picks| Volume 29

Bob’s Weekly Reading Picks

2019.7.28 volume 29


1. Everything You Need to Know About Communication Theory
2.Timeline of Apple Inc. products
3.The Ultimate Guide to Public Relations in 2019
4.7 Types of Marketing Organization Structures
5.The Top 5 Creative Brand Ideas You Need to Know
6.The History of Advertising: A Timeline
7.How to Rock Your Back to School Marketing Campaign [Infographic]

Continue reading Weekly Reading Picks| Volume 29