Advertising At The Turn Of The Century Summary

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Changes in Advertising at the turn of the Century Throughout the end of the 19th century, there were many technological innovations that helped to shape the advertising industry into what it is today. The main contributing factors for the progress of advertising included the growth of industrialism, rising literacy rates, urbanization, and mass print media. Steven Millhauser mentions a few of these factors in his book Martin Dressler: The Tale of an American Dreamer. In this book Martin Dressler, a young entrepreneur, enjoyed wild success with the help of his tactful use of this intriguing idea of advertising, as it was still fairly new. He knew early on how valuable advertising could be to his business and stated he “immediately sensed their…show more content…
1). All of these innovations that Millhauser mentions would have one thing in common; all would require advertising. Over the next century, advertising went from being something that was silly to being something that was essential. Advertising was growing right along side Industry itself. Whether it was advertising cards on the inside of horse railway cars, billboards, posters, or newspaper ads, every business had some form of advertising. Martin Dressler’s father represented how people viewed advertising in the late 19th century “for he disliked anything that smacked of the frivolous or extravagant” - (Millhauser Pg. 4). Martin himself, however, by the end of the book has established quite a fortune due to his, and many others, new view of advertising “people trapped in slow moving cars, with nothing to look at except the face of some stranger across the way, let their gaze drift to the advertisements, which attempted to seize their attention with bold lettering and clever pictures calculated to make…show more content…
Martin hired himself an ad-man, of sorts, named Harwinton to create ads that were more memorable to viewers. This is when Martin grasped how big advertising was to become in the future. “Harwinton is the future” he stated. (Millhauser Pg. 209). No matter the quality of the merchandise, the advertising can be a huge factor in determining it’s successfulness; as shown in Millhauser’s book when Harwinton says “Imagine two stones” (Millhauser Pg. 203), he goes on to praise and glorify one of the two identical stones, then asks Martin “Which one are you more likely to choose? That’s advertising”. Harwinton had a much more advanced and modern view of advertising than did Martin, and so with Harwinton’s help, they put up posters all over town that advertised not a new hotel, but a new way of life. This shows how advertisements were becoming more exciting and exuberant, ads featured clever photographs or slogans. Society longed for something out of the ordinary and it was the job of the advertising agencies of the time, to give it to

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