Classificationof Print Advertising
Creative withoutstrategy is called ‘art’. Creative with strategy is called‘advertising’.
-Jef I. Richards- Professor, Advertising and Public Relations atMichigan State University.
Advertising is a major aspect of communication that seeks to conveycertain messages with predetermined and expected outcomes from theaudiences. There are different mediums of advertising such as radio,online, cable, and print. As one of the major mediums, printadvertising is largely popular due to its relative ease ofproduction, accessibility, and effectiveness. The print medium hasdifferent classifications based on content, print material and otheraspects. The three major classifications of print adverts based onthe format and medium used are outdoor, brochures/pamphlets, andnewspaper/magazine ads, whose characteristics vary widely and aredesigned to meet unique objectives as expounded by this essay.
The first classification of print ads, which is one of the mostfavored by advertisers, comprises of newspapers and magazines. Thereare some core differences between newspapers and magazines such asfrequency of publication and target market. In most cases, magazinesare printed on superior quality glossy paper meaning that they aremore suitable for ads that seek to capitalize on image clarity (SmallBusiness Chron). Common magazines include Motor Trend targetingautomobile enthusiasts, and Times that specialize in world news andpolitics. On the other hand, newspapers target larger masses atdifferent levels such as regional, local, and national. Mostnewspapers such as the New York Times are printed daily while othersare printed several times a day. Both newspapers and magazines canhandle different types of print adverts such as printed text, imagesor a combination of both. The size of the adverts may vary with mostof them ranging from full page adverts to classifieds. In some cases,advertisers may also purchase several pages of space to feature adetailed story and series of messages. Some newspapers and magazinesare free of charge while the majority is sold at a given price. Ineither case, the cost of advertising can be very high depending onthe circulation numbers and the space or words used. Advertisers alsohave a choice between colored prints and black and white prints (Dyer21). However, with growing popularity of digital technology,magazines and newspapers are slowly losing their print circulationnumbers in favor of digital copies (Kelley and Jugenheimer 36).Nonetheless, advertisers still rely on them to market their goods.
The second classification is made up of pamphlets. Pamphlets, alsoknown as flyers, are made up of unbounded booklets or single leafletscontaining printed information and images addressing a given topic.Pamphlets are distributed to the targeted masses for free. This formof print advertising is most suited to organizations that seek todistribute information about their programs, services, and productsto the public (O’Connor, Marsh and Tshivashe 18). They are commonamong higher education institutions such as Yale University andCambridge on various courses offered, political parties, and evenbanks. For instance, the 2016 Democratic Party presidentialcandidate, Hillary Clinton, has been using pamphlets and flierswidely to sell her manifesto during campaign rallies (Getty Images).The manner of distribution varies widely with some advertisersbundling them with magazines and newspapers. The main advantage ofusing pamphlets over other mediums is that space is better utilizedand they be used to target unique market segments. For instance,Citibank offers pamphlets to clients at its banking halls. Thuspamphlets serve a unique purpose different from newspapers andmagazines.
Outdoor adverts that comprise billboards, posters, and banners makeup the third classification of print adverts. Billboards are usuallylarge printed mediums displayed along highways and motorwaystargeting road users and other areas where there is large humantraffic. Posters are relatively smaller than billboards and areusually printed on paper and plastered on different surfaces (SmallBusiness Chron). Banners, though the term has come to be associatedwith online advertising, comprises of conventionally printed ads onpaper, cloth, and other polyethylene-based materials. Banners arecommon in university’s student leadership campaigns or protests.Stand banners and retractable banners are widely used in trade fairsand conferences as they are more professional and presentable(Staples). The main advantages outdoor print ads are their largesize, they can be made from different materials and they can beeasily made at home. For instance, individuals use posters toadvertise lost pets in neighborhoods by simply sticking them on treesand signage posts. To make billboards more interesting, advertisersuse bright colors and large fonts (Blythe 35). Fast food retailoutlet, McDonalds has perfected the use of billboards globally byusing bright colors and images (McDonalds). In line with that,Pichler (5) indicates that modern outdoor print advertising isincreasingly using more images than text. Images are more attractiveto the eye and depict emotion more easily and reach a greateraudience at any given time.
Given the various classes of print adverts, it is clear that eachtype is suited for different adverts and type of message. Again, costis a sensitive issue for advertisers, especially those with smalladvertising budgets. Nonetheless, it is also very important that thetype of message, content, audience targeted, and medium used all workin tandem to convey the intended message and elicit the intendedresponse from the audience (Dyer 9). This marks the ultimate successfor advertisers. For this reason, newspaper/magazine ads, pamphlets,and outdoor prints may be suited to different advertisers dependingon the industry, product, cost, message and personal preferences.Therefore, it is important that advertisers learn about the differenttypes of print adverts so that they choose one that best fits theirneeds and be creative enough to make it interesting to the audiences.
Blythe, Jim.Principles and Practice of Marketing. New York: SAGE. 2013.Print.
Dyer, Gillian.Advertising as Communication. New York: Routledge. 2008.Print.
Getty Images.Volunteer-Sorts-Election-Pamphlets for Hillary Clinton News Photo.Web. 2016.
Kelley, Larry andDonald Jugenheimer. Advertising Media: Workbook and Sourcebook.New
York: M.E. Sharpe.2008. Print
McDonalds, 2016.Web. 30th June 2016
New York Times.2016. Web. 30th June 2016. <http://www.nytimes.com/>
O’Connor, M.,Marsh, R. and Tshivashe, T. Advertising and Promotions. NewYork: Pearson.
Pichler, Wilfried.The Language of Pictures in Print Media Advertising. London:Diplom. 2002.
Small BusinessChron. What Is Print Media Advertising? 2016. Web. 29thJune 2016.
Staples. Bannerstands. 2016. Web. 30th June 2016.
Time Magazine. 2016.Web. 30th June 2016. <http://time.com/>