The other day I stumbled across a few advertisements from the 1950’s and I was reminded of back when I was younger and would sift through old TIME magazines in my grandparent’s garage. I remembered how I enjoyed the story that all the Norman Rockwell style ads would tell through use of imagery. For instance, in the first ad above, even Father Time is perplexed by the GE brand refrigerator. Notice that the cooler is on what is likely to be the moon, as if the product was light years beyond what was currently on the market! Then in the second ad, it shows Hunt’s Tomato Catsup as being, “Deliciously Yours!” Even in the 50’s and 60’s, brand loyalty was sought after with ads prodding the consumer to make Hunt’s your brand. This practice is still done today as seen with all the campaigns aimed at creating user generated content as a way of both personalizing and promoting the brand through consumer usage.
Then I stumbled across this gem:
There is no way you would ever see this in any form other than an anti-meat ad. I’m not even going to comment on the copy, however, I will comment on how disgusting those hamburger patties look. I guess that’s just one more advancement in advertising that we’ve grown accustomed to: food photography. Never again will you see a fatty, greasy burger on a stained tray. Instead you’ll only see food that looks so good that it would have to be plastic in order for it to be real.
This is only the tip of the iceberg when comparing ads from the 1950’s to today. So much has changed but at the same time, a lot of the concepts behind the ads are still the same: Make the user relate to the product, promise a better life, tell a convincing story, or everyones favorite – use sex(or the promise of sex).
I wonder what strategies used today will still be in use 30 years from now. Anyone care to take a guess?