Marketing and advertising has been around since 40,000 BC and the discipline back then was known as wall paintings but today we call it Billboard advertising.
With no paper or printer, the first oldest human race would draw or carve their pictures on the wall, (usually images of people) to communicate a message, socially.
Exploration of techniques during BC lead to an evolution of advertising mediums such as wood block printing, stamps, papyrus, silk and stone. All were used to enhance the art of communication for the masses.
Evolving that sales strategy further were the Chinese who in 105BC invented what we know today as paper. In doing so they were also recorded as the first to use package design, paper adverts, sales patter such as “Compared with other…..our product is unique,” and trademarks in the form of flower logos to avoid counterfeiting.
Adverts and personification have been together hand in hand since its birth with re-invigorating strength through every print evolution but it wasn’t until the invention of the “print press” that personification and design in adverts became easier, it would become a sales strategy.
Given another 500 years, adverts, targeted slogans, beautiful graphics and personification to sell a message created the below standard of print adverts to become social adverts.
Print flourished in the 1900’s and as we know, advertising went beyond itself to radio and television but still capitalised on personification to create that marketing message whatever the medium. Big business made print, design and personification an art.
The 21st century has gone totally digital and in effect made personification in sales more successful then ever. Its still solidly present in print, radio and TV but today on the world wide web it’s found a way to become more personal, more targeted and more successful to smaller businesses and even the individual.
In todays case, the personification in advertising still involves but goes beyond the graphical rock art of 40, 000 BC and the artistic illustrations of the early 1900’s. It’s beyond the professional models and photography used in magazines and TV of the late 1900’s and extended its reach to entail what we call Social Media. We associate the phrase “social media” with the likes of digital formats such as twitter and facebook but if you break it down:
Social: relating to society
Media: The main means of mass communication- a means by which something is communicated
Is that phrase not representative of the oldest Rock Art or Egyptian community posters? Social media is just another evolution of sales, personification and design, and judging by history, it could be around for at least the next 100 years.
Likewise personification has always been a core element in communicating a message. The very idea of a person communicating with us in the form or text, audio, or graphic gives a 2Dimensional advert a big sense of reality, taking itself off the medium its produce on to raise an emotion, an idea, a memory and relationship and in turn make a sale.
As a business owner, don’t think “print is dead” and likewise don’t rule out social media as a “fad”. History has shown that personification and the social element in sales is a proven method that brings success whether it be print, digital or Rock! (the medium is irrelevant). The skill and idea of using personification to sell has been used longer then anyone of us has been alive and likely to outlive us as well. What’s more it’s in your bloodline because……
The Neanderthals invented Social Media with cave paintings
The Chinese Printed it on paper
The Germans Mass produced it with printing presses
The tech nerds evolved it
Now the world owns it
And its up to you to use it……Whatever the medium.
Your ancestors used personification, marketing, print, design and social media to make a sale.
But are you?