Six Remarkable Brands (Season Finale)

All the things that capture your eye- and you imagination- in the world around you have one thing in common: they’re all brands. In the Age of Persuasion season finale, Terry O’Reilly examines six remarkable brands- and not just ‘brands’ in the consumer sense. Among them: a media icon, an athlete, a rock & roll band, a toy, a city, and a 500-kilogram land mammal. He’ll explain the brand strength behind each, and explore what makes them remarkable. By studying them, Terry explains how this can deepen our understanding of how, and why, people prioritize some things over others.

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Persuasion in the Niches

Times ‘wuz that the goal of any marketer was to sell “big” brands to the widest possible audience. This week, Terry O’Reilly explains how the days of “one size fits all” brands are vanishing; replaced by specifically targeted “niche” brands. He’ll trace this trend to the growth of “specialty” media; Gay/Lesbian/Bi radio stations, for instance, provide a platform for a new generation of “niche” marketers. He’ll also show how many of the mighty mainstream brands- such as the Model T- even the iPod- began as “niche” products.

Advertising as the New Sugar Daddy

When money runs short- more and more people are turning to advertising to pay the bills. Charities, artists, athletes, even governments and school boards are turning to “corporate partners” – offering advertising exposure in exchange for much-needed money. This week Terry O’Reilly explains how Advertisers became the “sugar daddies” of the 21st Century- and traces “sponsorship” back through the centuries.

Frontiers and Boundaries

Broadcast Date: May 31, 2008 (Originally aired in April of 2007

It’s no surprise that a lot of today’s Ads would never have aired in our parent’s time. But guess what? Many Ads from the past would never be tolerated today. This week Terry O’Reilly explains how Advertising is a kind of time capsule: reflecting the tastes and tolerances of a given time. And how quickly those tolerances can change.

Selling War

A century ago, when a nation called, men came running. Today, men and women need a reason why they should wage war. This week, Terry examines the complex, changing, relationship between persuasion and war. He’ll look at ways advertisers mobilized to help Canada in two World Wars, how the impromptu “Christmas truce” of 1914 endangered the ‘idea’ of World War I, and he’ll examine and the fascinating variety of advertising approaches nations use to recruit soldiers today.

The Myth of Mass Marketing

It was ad giant Fairfax Cone who said “there is no such thing as a Mass Mind. The Mass Audience is made up of individuals, and good advertising is written always from one person to another. When it is aimed at millions it rarely moves anyone.” “Mass Marketing” allows advertisers to reach millions of consumers at once- but at a cost. The greater the audience, the ‘cooler’, more distant, and less personal the relationship between marketer and consumer becomes. Terry examines the power of the sort of one-on-one selling that turned the “Fuller Brush” company from a $75 investment to a multi-million dollar empire, and he’ll show creative ways advertisers find to relate to a “mass” audience, one person at a time.