“Many a small thing has been made large by the right kind of advertising” said Mark Twain. Advertising in its introductory stage began with hawkers calling out to buyers in markets and on the streets to buy their goods..

With the advent of printing press came the first kind of commercial advertising. The first type of ads in India were classifieds, it appeared in the country’s first newspaper- Hicky’s Bengal Gazette. During the 18th century, advertising was confined within the boundaries of print media; advertisers purchased space in newspapers and magazines with greater readership to be able to reach the larger mass.

The next stage in advertising was the era of radio and television. The first television advertisement was broadcast on New York television. It was a 20 second spot displaying a picture of a clock superimposed on a map of the United Sates (US), accompanied by the voice-over “America runs on Bulova time.” Slowly television ads gained popularity and many big companies starting buying slots on popular TV channels for advertising their products.

In India, the first television advertisement was for Gwalior Suitings on Doordarshan and the first colour advertisement was for Bombay Dyeing. During the initial years, the rate of literacy in India was low and those who were literate preferred reading regional language newspapers and watching regional channels. Advertisers studied this behavior pattern and took to regional media for advertising their brands and reaching the local population. This helped them reach people in less developed parts of the country and connect to them in their own regional languages thus creating a market for their products in those areas.

With increasing competition the numbers of newspapers, magazines, FM channels and TV channels have increased and so have the numbers of advertisements. The invention of internet has also played its part in the evolving process of advertising. With unbound evolution of computer technology and introduction of social media, advertisers have found another platform to reach their target audience. Advertisements these days have audience in every class of population and are accessible by people from all walks of life. The increasing number of advertisements reaching wider population led to the increase in demand and sales of products.

Newspapers and magazines these days have huge number of advertisements so much so that the ad edit ratio in most of the newspapers these days is 60:40. Newspapers, TV channels and websites are always competing with each other to get more ads and thus greater popularity and revenue collection. Maximum websites now-a-days are filled with various advertisements be it about e-shopping or an online course or a latest app. Digital media has made it easier for companies to be accessible by their target audience.

The global advertising industry has undergone radical transformation and is still in the process. With robust growth of digital media and increase in the number of internet users, it is assumed that within the next decade print media may cease to exist. Advertising might only revolve around forms of electronic media be it internet, mobile or television. The bar of creativity will be raised and the competition in the industry may go up too. The rate of literacy and employment will increase which will result in an increase in the purchasing power of mass leading to more competition between brands and greater demand for products.

There is no second thought that the internet has revolutionized the advertising industry and it has just begun to do so. Advertising will reach summits with the help of digital media in the coming years. Online advertising will be the prime source of advertising. Digital transformations will remain an ongoing process. The future awaits a whole new evolution in digital media.

While global brands have already been marketing in Brazil ahead of Rio Olympics, the activity in the UK kicked off 100 days before the opening ceremony. Visa, Olympic partner since 1986, significantly moved up its advertising schedule releasing ads in June. Many famous brands have put in a lot of efforts and started brand campaigns linking them to the Olympics. Coca-Cola’s #That’sGold moment campaign has announced hurdling sensation and Olympic medal hopeful Michelle Jenneke s #That’sGold ambassador in Australia to encourage Australians to share their #That’sGold moment. While, Nissan is seeking to bring fans close to Team GB and Paralympics GB with films that give fans the opportunity to experience first-hand the team’s intense training regime. The car brand which is also the official automotive partner of the British Olympic Association and British Paralympic Association is also offering sports fans a chance to win tickets to the Rio 2016 games.

Lacoste has launched a ‘support the style’ video that is designed to be a powerful showcase of the “spirit, style and elegance” of Lacoste. The clothing brand hired choreographers to direct the ad, which follows a troop of hard core supporters through Paris. Procter & Gamble (P&G) is admiring the emotional strength involved in motherhood in its 2016 Olympic campaign. The new ad, Strong, is a part of the FMCG giant’s 10 year sponsorship of both the Winter as well as Summer Games under the title ‘Thank You Mom’. The campaign started in the run in London 2012 and will continue up to Tokyo 2020. When most of the brands are engaged in campaigning how could Adidas be left behind. The shoe brand’s creative director Stella McCartney has designed the Team GB and Paralympics GB kit in her signature modern aesthetic design. The sportswear brand said that the lightweight, breathable synthetic fabric is on an average 10% lighter than 2012, which will help athletes go “further and faster”. Adidas Team GB replica apparel has been made available with the Adidas website and sports retailers since 1st May.

Another Olympic sponsor Panasonic is celebrating Britain’s army of ‘Superfans’ in its Rio 2016 campaign. The brand is calling UK sports lovers to show their support for the nation’s athletes on social media by sharing “fun and passionate, wild and wacky” photos with the hastag #superfans. Kellogg’s which is Team GB’s official sponsor has started a #GreatStarts campaign that recreates iconic Hollywood wake-up scenes from movies like Ferris Bueller’s Day Off featuring past British Olympic medal winners Sir Steve Redgrave, Rebecca Adlington and Louis Smith. The campaign activity includes a user generated content competition in which people will share their great starts for a chance to win a trip to Rio to see the Olympic Games. Some of the other campaigns are car Mini Cooper’s ‘Win Small Campaign’, McDonald’s also has started a contest named ‘Win When USA Wins Gold’ wherein when you purchase items that have under 400 calories you can win prizes, some as big as $25K and a trip to London. In this contest, an American athlete’s name appears on all food items that are less than 400 calories and if your Olympic athlete wins a gold medal, you win a prize. The ‘Take Part’ campaign by Samsung uses different apps and technologies to keep you up to date on everything that is happening during Olympics.

With so many brands taking active participation in campaigning and associating themselves with Olympics, Rio 2016 is certainly a golden opportunity for brands to take their identity to another level and create a fan base for themselves among a new target audience and reach larger masses. It is the right chance for them to showcase their creativity, uniqueness and innovation. Brands are taking full advantage of this and leaving no stone unmoved to stand out in the crowd and establish their individual identity.

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