Deader Than Disco / Advertising


  • Cigarette ads on television were banned in the UK in 1965note , and in the US in 1970. Nowadays, they're looked back on as a symbol of how naive people were at the time about the dangers of tobacco use, and as symbols of '50s and '60s kitsch. The knowledge that at least four of the men who played the Marlboro Man in advertisements later died of lung cancer wound up making Marlboro's ads in particular Harsher in Hindsight, especially knowing the lengths to which tobacco companies went to deny or downplay the health risks of smoking.
  • Early on, television shows would have the ads contiguous with the show ("This portion of [name of show] brought to you by [product]", read by The Announcer). This format was especially common on Game Shows, which would often have the name of the product displayed somewhere on-set to boot. Over time, commercials took on the format that they have now. Though, funnily enough, with DVR and online streaming giving an option to skip commercials leading to increasingly obtrusive Product Placement, we seem to be heading that way all over again, only now, instead of the announcers, it's the fictional characters who are shilling the product, such as Michael Westen of Burn Notice actually using one of his "When you're a spy..." monologues to promote the car company that sponsored the show.
    • Public broadcasters in Germany (ARD, ZDF, arte and local stations) may only air a limited amount of advertising and none after 20:00 so they often have a program "presented by" X, Y and Z, which they may do at any hour of the day.
  • Advertisements for home appliances, such as dishwashers and vacuum cleaners, fell by the wayside during the late-90's. This could probably be attributed to the internet making product reviews much more accessible, meaning potential appliance buyers can now simply go on the internet and look up professional/customer reviews for whatever appliances they are planning to buy rather than relying on television advertisements. If a home appliance is advertised, it will usually just be through an infomercial, or is an absurdly-priced device where the advertiser is selling towards the well-heeled.
    • Another possible reason for this is that home appliances were generally marketed towards housewives and stay-at-home mothers during daytime television. Today, with more women going into the workplace, this market has significantly diminished. Many appliances are now also cheaper, and in line with electronics, are marketed as disposable goods that can easily be replaced rather than a 30-year investment.
  • Cartoon show-tie in toyline commercials. Ignoring the fact that the shows themselves were akin to 30-minute commercials for the toyline. The FCC issued strict government regulations on advertising aimed towards children and this was one of the first things to go on broadcast television. They still exist on Nickelodeon as time-buy TV movies, and The Hub pre-Discovery Family basically existed to sell My Little Pony and Transformers toys, but outside a few cases, most viewers see these shows as uncreative and lacking in entertainment better done with imagination.
  • Ditto to Ditech. In the early-2000's, their commercials with "Ned The Incompetent Loan Officer" were seen as hilarious and made the phrase "Lost another loan to Ditech" a Memetic Mutation. Later, Ditech and other companies such as Countrywide who had ubiquitous advertising in the subprime days were shamed off the air (and in many cases, out of business) for their terrible loan standards which caused the 2008 mortgage crisis.
  • Ads taking direct potshots at their competition (ie. "AT&T vs. MCI", "Sega vs. Nintendo", "ABC Warehouse vs. Highland vs. Fretter", etc.) were very common during the 90's. They fell by the wayside during the Turn of the Millennium due to a couple factors: The increased ease in obtaining product reviews making it easier for consumers to simply go on the internet and see for themselves who has the superior productnote , comparison shopping making the name of the store who sold it much less a factor in a sale, and the general perception of such ads as being annoying and immature. AT&T vs. MCI pretty much was killed when cell phones with built-in nationwide long distance made that market extinct, and video game consoles are happy to outsource their brand fights to people on the Internet who usually are ignored outside the hardcore gaming market.
  • Jared Fogle became Subway's spokesman at the turn of the 20th Century after his success story of overcoming obesity by eating Subway sandwiches and walking rigorously. The ads were so successful, Subway's revenues tripled. In 2015, Jared was revealed to be a pedophile, his child obesity awareness charity was exposed as a scam, and he was sentenced to 15 years in prison. Since then, Subway has scrubbed all references to Jared from their website and tried to distance themselves from him.
  • Erin Esurance was a highly popular mascot for Esurance during the latter half of the 2000s. As an Spy Catsuit-wearing Action Girl popular with both young men and women (possibly inspired by works like Alias), she greatly helped boost Esurance's brand appeal during that time. So what happened? Rule 34. There was so much pornographic fan art of the character — most of which pops up when people merely searched for Esurance on a search engine — that Esurance had no choice but to axe the character, and even scrubbed all references to her from the website. Fans all but dismissed her, questioning why you need some kind of spy, even a sexy one, to sell auto insurance. By The New Tens, she was actually LESS popular than Microsoft's Clippy (who was often viewed as The Scrappy of corporate mascots).

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/DeaderThanDisco/Advertising