The Importance of Advertising

Andy Santana, Staff Writer

Advertising has been a staple in American history since the late 1800’s, and has shaped not only the United States, but the world as a whole. In society, advertising has taken over the landscape of our physical and virial lives to the point where it has become the social norm to see hundreds of ads daily. Advertising has not only helped companies promote and sell their products and services, but has also changed the way people think and progress information. With people being bombarded with hundreds of thousands of ads every day, there’s no way they would be able to fully comprehend the information portrayed in every advertisement. As a result, ad agencies had to figure out how to break through the constant stream of mediocre advertisements. This forced them to look at the science behind advertising: how to catch people’s attention in a different and more intriguing way than their competitors. They accomplished this by striving for excellence, which is also what propelled advertising to reach the creative level of becoming a legitimate art form, rivaling painting and music. Most of the best ads in the 20th and 21st centuries are extremely creative and complex, while also being presented in a simple manner. Depending on the era or significance of the time, some ads have the power to influence the era, and even change the world. One great example of creating a great ad at the perfect time was Coca-Cola’s 1971 advertisement, “ I’d like to buy the world a Coke”. This ad aired during a time full of struggles and unrest. In the midst of the Vietnam War and the heels of President Nixon’s resignation, Coca-Cola came out with a phenomenal advertisement. The “I’d like to buy the world a Coke” ad was quite simple in nature, as it was basically just a bunch of people singing a song atop of a hill. However, this is where the creativity of advertisement comes in. The song the people were singing was a heartwarming song called “Hilltop”. The most significant lyrics that came from this song was the “I’ll like to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony” hook. This was important because, as the camera panned across the hundreds of people, you could see them singing, but, not only that, you got to see their faces, as well. Everyone was different. Different races, cultures, ethnicity, genders and ages…and they were all singing the same song “in perfect harmony”. Coca-Cola wanted to not only promote their product, but to also unite the world in a time that brought much peril. It’s crazy to think that a soft drink could change the world, but their advertisement influenced the world and brought hope. Incidents like these are what pushed and helped advertisements become what they are today. It’s not just another department of a company, but actually a creative art form. Good advertising speaks to its audience, as a simple ad can change people’s opinions, beliefs and even emotions in seconds, and that is the true power of advertising. Over the decades, advertising has become more and more command, but the hardships remain. Amazing influential advertisements don’t come by every day, as they’re rare and extremely hard to duplicate. Also, time and execution play a big role in the success of a world renowned advertisement. Advertisements have become a special part of human history that will be talked about for many years to come.