Advertising is communicating a message to a set of people or audience to persuade them to change behavioral patterns, or to continue with their present behavior. Advertising is oftentimes used in relation to a commercial product or services although institutional and political advertising is also practiced. Advertising may also be focused on stakeholders, shareholders, employees and workers to send them a positive message.
Sponsors and advertisers usually pay for advertising spots or media mileage using traditional media like the print media or the broadcast media. Other forms of advertising are traditional billboards, electronic billboards, direct mail, distribution of flyers, handbills and brochures, free samples or the new media like websites, social media and sending text messages.
An advertisement is sometimes referred to as a “commercial” because they feature commercial products or consumer goods. Companies belonging to the public relations and advertising services industry usually produce the advertisements for organizations and companies that want to promote their products or enhance the image of their companies. The advertising industry field also includes the firms that sell the advertising space, serving as media representatives for the print media or publications, radio, television and the internet where the advertisements will be placed. Display advertising refers to those ads created for public display on billboards, shopping malls, subways, taxis, airports, train stations or similar media.
The role of advertising is the creation of increased awareness about a company, product or service and the promotion and exposure of the “brand or name” ultimately boosting sales. Most companies focus on their “bottom line” and their day-to-day operations like production, administration, human resources, services and sales. The creation of effective advertisements will need allocation of resources, and hiring of regular personnel that may only work on temporary advertising campaigns. Hiring an advertising agency well-versed with research, the production aspects and placing of the advertisements in the most effective time slots and heavy traffic areas oftentimes produce better results than an in-house advertising department.
The internet has changed so many aspects of the advertising world. Public relations services and advertising agencies are now diversifying and offering various services aside from public relations, marketing, sales and interactive media. With the explosive growth of internet users, many agencies are now refocusing their campaigns to include social media and internet advertising.
Advertising and public relations is an exciting but stressful field. Creativity on a tight schedule can be very frustrating. Consultants, lobbyists, creative writers and graphic artists must meet tight deadlines and may be required to work very long hours. The work may also involve travelling to meet with media representatives and consult with clients.