Read the complete article about the history of advertising, then complete the following items.

  1. In a complete paragraph of approximately 7 to 10 sentences, write an objective summary of the article.
  2. Based on what you have read, what can you Need more information about parenthetical citation?


In the 21st century, with an intensely competitive consumer market, advertisers increasingly used digital technology to call greater attention to products. In 2009, for example, the world’s first video advertisements to be embedded in a print publication appeared in Entertainment Weeklymagazine. The thin battery-powered screen implanted in the page could store up to 40 minutes of video via chip technology and automatically began to play when the reader opened the page.

For an advertisement to be effective, its production and placement must be based on a knowledge of the public and a skilled use of the media. Advertising agencies serve to orchestrate complex campaigns whose strategies of media use are based on research into consumer behavior and demographic analysis of the market area. A strategy will combine creativity in the production of the advertising messages with canny scheduling and placement, so that the messages are seen by, and will have an effect on, the people the advertiser most wants to address. Given a fixed budget, advertisers face a basic choice: they can have their message seen or heard by many people fewer times, or by fewer people many times. This and other strategic decisions are made in light of tests of the effectiveness of advertising campaigns.

There is no dispute over the power of advertising to inform consumers of what products are available. In a free-market economy effective advertising is essential to a company’s survival, for unless consumers know about a company’s product they are unlikely to buy it. In criticism of advertising it has been argued that the consumer must pay for the cost of advertising in the form of higher prices for goods; against this point it is argued that advertising enables goods to be mass marketed, thereby bringing prices down. It has been argued that the cost of major advertising campaigns is such that few firms can afford them, thus helping these firms to dominate the market; on the other hand, whereas smaller firms may not be able to compete with larger ones at a national level, advertising at the local level or online enables them to hold their own.

Finally, it has been argued that advertisers exercise an undue influence over the regular contents of the media they employ—the editorial stance of a newspaper or the subject of a television show. In response it has been pointed out that such influence is counteracted, at least in the case of financially strong media firms, by the advertiser’s reliance on the media to convey a message; any compromise of the integrity of a media firm might result in a smaller audience for the advertising.

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