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Article
Publication date: 2 August 2013

Jennifer Scanlon

This article aims to explore the work lives and contributions of a group of women employed at the J. Walter Thompson advertising agency in the early twentieth century.

Abstract

Purpose

This article aims to explore the work lives and contributions of a group of women employed at the J. Walter Thompson advertising agency in the early twentieth century.

Design/methodology/approach

Archival source material from the J. Walter Thompson Company archives at Duke University includes personnel files, advertising campaign reports, and meeting minutes. The archival work is placed in historical context.

Findings

The J. Walter Thompson Women's Editorial Department played a significant role in the development of advertising and in furthering women's opportunities as advertising professionals.

Originality/value

Advertising was one of the few male‐dominated professions open to women in the early years of the twentieth century. An exploration of these women's work experiences greatly enhances our understanding of the field, of women's roles as advertisers, and of women's roles as consumers.

Details

Journal of Historical Research in Marketing, vol. 5 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-750X

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Article
Publication date: 25 September 2019

Cristina Sánchez-Blanco

This paper aims to clarify whether J. Walter Thompson (JWT)’s planning and research tradition gave rise to the concept of Account Planning. In addition, it seeks to…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to clarify whether J. Walter Thompson (JWT)’s planning and research tradition gave rise to the concept of Account Planning. In addition, it seeks to analyse the different planning methodologies that preceded Account Planning to highlight how it emerged at JWT London. A further goal is to understand the impact of Account Planning, which sought to achieve effective advertising through detailed consumer insight and has transformed the multinational JWT as a whole and the advertising sector in general.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology is based mainly on the analysis of primary research conducted on original files donated to Duke University Library (North Carolina, USA) by the multinational J. Walter Thompson.

Findings

Account Planning emerged in 1968 in London as a consequence of the research and planning tradition that already existed at JWT. JWT’s corporate culture established the importance of the Account Planning approach that was valued by advertisers and spread to all offices. The planning tools used by the multinational today are updated versions of those that were designed from 1960 onwards.

Research limitations/implications

The historical approach taken here precludes an analysis of the current reality of Account Planning. In future research, it would be useful to carry out in-depth interviews with professionals to explore how they apply planning tools that represent updated versions of those that were developed 50 years ago.

Originality/value

This paper’s main interest lies in the fact that it is based on original, unpublished sources, an approach that makes it possible to reassess previous findings.

Details

Journal of Historical Research in Marketing, vol. 12 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-750X

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Article
Publication date: 15 August 2016

Emily J.H. Contois

Through a case study of J. Walter Thompson and Kraft’s efforts to market Vegemite in the USA in the late 1960s, this paper aims to explore transnational systems of…

Abstract

Purpose

Through a case study of J. Walter Thompson and Kraft’s efforts to market Vegemite in the USA in the late 1960s, this paper aims to explore transnational systems of cultural production and consumption, the US’s changing perception of Australia and the influence of culture on whether advertising fails or succeeds.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper draws from archival primary sources, including advertisements and newspapers, as well as secondary literatures from the fields of advertising history, food studies and transnational studies of popular culture.

Findings

Although J. Walter Thompson’s advertising contributed to Vegemite’s icon status in Australia, it failed to capture the American market in the late 1960s. In the 1980s, however, Vegemite did capture American interest when it was central to a wave of Australian popular culture that included films, sport and music, particularly Men at Work’s hit song, “Down Under”, whose lyrics mentioned Vegemite. As such, Vegemite’s moment of success stateside occurred without a national advertising campaign. Even when popular, however, Americans failed to like Vegemite’s taste, confirming it as a uniquely culturally specific product.

Originality/value

This paper analyzes a little-studied advertising campaign. The case study’s interdisciplinary findings will be of interest to scholars of advertising history, twentieth century USA and Australian history and food studies.

Details

Journal of Historical Research in Marketing, vol. 8 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-750X

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Article
Publication date: 15 August 2016

Robert Crawford

This paper aims to provide an insight into the emergence of the global advertising industry by undertaking a comparison of the respective entries of the advertising…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to provide an insight into the emergence of the global advertising industry by undertaking a comparison of the respective entries of the advertising agencies J. Walter Thompson and McCann Erickson into the Australian market in the 1930s and 1960s.

Design/methodology/approach

This study undertakes a comparison of the strategies and initiatives implemented by J. Walter Thompson and McCann Erickson as documented in the agencies’ respective archival collections as well as industry press reports.

Findings

The similarities between J. Walter Thompson and McCann Erickson reveal that globalisation of the advertising industry was both driven and restricted in even parts by profitability and pragmatism.

Originality/value

The experiences of the J. Walter Thompson and McCann Erickson agencies in establishing their Australian operations offer a unique, long-term view of the emergence and development of a global advertising industry.

Details

Journal of Historical Research in Marketing, vol. 8 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-750X

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Article
Publication date: 16 February 2015

Ferdinando Fasce and Elisabetta Bini

– The purpose of this paper is to examine the presence and influence of US advertising in Italy between the early 1950s and the mid-1970s.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the presence and influence of US advertising in Italy between the early 1950s and the mid-1970s.

Design/methodology/approach

The purpose of this paper is to examine the presence and influence of US advertising in Italy between the early 1950s and the mid-1970s.

Findings

The paper argues that there is a need to further qualify and deconstruct the notion of “Americanization” by integrating the now well-established notions of “hybridization” and “mediation” with more specific attention to the competing “hearts and souls”, the different strategies and discursive practices that different individual actors (American, British and Italian) operating within the Italian advertising business tried to instil into goods and consumers and the economic and cultural results that they achieved.

Originality/value

This is the first research on the history of Italian advertising that fully places it within a transnational and comparative perspective using so far unpublished records, aiming at moving beyond traditional, eastbound Americanization frameworks through a detailed empirical investigation.

Details

Journal of Historical Research in Marketing, vol. 7 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-750X

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 10 July 2009

Karen E. Mishra

The purpose of this paper is to understand how J. Walter Thompson (JWT) utilized its private forums for its executives over the period 1936‐1938 to build trust both within…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to understand how J. Walter Thompson (JWT) utilized its private forums for its executives over the period 1936‐1938 to build trust both within its own organization as well as with the public in the 1930s. This was a time when the advertising industry was under public scrutiny resulting from using what consumers considered emotional and irrational appeals in their advertising practices.

Design/methodology/approach

This archival research examines the meeting minutes of these forums to discover what topics were most important to the leaders of JWT at this time. The archives are located at the Hartman Center at Duke University.

Findings

This paper highlights the importance of these forums that were led by the top management team and attended by the creative staff of JWT. These forums played an important role in strengthening the culture of JWT, by building organizational trust and fostering organizational communication with a new generation of JWT leadership.

Originality/value

This paper utilized primary data sources – the meeting minutes from 1936 to 1938 – to uncover the values of JWT and how those values were disseminated to their employees, as well as how it impacted their work with their clients and ultimately the public.

Details

Journal of Historical Research in Marketing, vol. 1 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-750X

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 1954

Aarhus Kommunes Biblioteker (Teknisk Bibliotek), Ingerslevs Plads 7, Aarhus, Denmark. Representative: V. NEDERGAARD PEDERSEN (Librarian).

Abstract

Aarhus Kommunes Biblioteker (Teknisk Bibliotek), Ingerslevs Plads 7, Aarhus, Denmark. Representative: V. NEDERGAARD PEDERSEN (Librarian).

Details

Aslib Proceedings, vol. 6 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0001-253X

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 1949

It has often been said that a great part of the strength of Aslib lies in the fact that it brings together those whose experience has been gained in many widely differing…

Abstract

It has often been said that a great part of the strength of Aslib lies in the fact that it brings together those whose experience has been gained in many widely differing fields but who have a common interest in the means by which information may be collected and disseminated to the greatest advantage. Lists of its members have, therefore, a more than ordinary value since they present, in miniature, a cross‐section of institutions and individuals who share this special interest.

Details

Aslib Proceedings, vol. 1 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0001-253X

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Article
Publication date: 20 November 2017

Michael French

The purpose of this paper is to analyse the evolution of “push” marketing in the confectionery industry in Britain during the 1930s. It examines the interplay between a…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to analyse the evolution of “push” marketing in the confectionery industry in Britain during the 1930s. It examines the interplay between a manufacturer and advertising agency in creating advertising for cocoa and chocolate.

Design/methodology/approach

A survey of the literature examines the uses of health and well-being in the design of advertising in Britain between the wars. The records of Rowntree and its main advertising agency, J Walter Thompson, are used to examine the themes and tactics used in advertising for cocoa and Aero chocolate bars during the 1930s.

Findings

The paper emphasises the different ways in which health and nutrition was used in advertising for the two products. The campaigns of the 1930s built on earlier use of these themes. J Walter Thompson looked for ways of presenting commodities as “new and improved” and their role extended into pressing for changes to production methods and the nature of products. Themes of modernity, sexuality and lifestyles all featured, confirming conclusions of earlier studies. However, targeting of mothers and of different age and gender groups indicated that market segmentation was used extensively via print media and tailored advertising messages.

Originality/value

Although Cadbury, Rowntree and confectionery have been studied in depth before, this paper emphasises their role in applying new advertising ideas to everyday items. It points to the influence of advertising on the mass of consumers compared to the middle- and upper-income groups targeted in the marketing of houses, motor-cars and new consumer durables.

Details

Journal of Historical Research in Marketing, vol. 9 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-750X

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 1987

Penelope Ody

The development of market segmentation over the past few years means that most retail companies now have a much shrewder idea of the customers they want to reach than they…

Abstract

The development of market segmentation over the past few years means that most retail companies now have a much shrewder idea of the customers they want to reach than they used to have. Unfortunately the media in which the retailers advertise are rarely so clearly targeted. So how effective is retail advertising? In a recent Management Horizons survey, a third of the retailers questioned thought that more than half of their advertising budgets were wasted; some top retailers admitted that their only test of advertising effectiveness was “gut feel”. Retailers have been big spenders on advertising for quite a few years; total retail advertising budgets are now running at around £510m. This could mean an awful lot of wasted money. With this in mind, Management Horizons recently put on a conference on the subject as part of its RIS Seminar programme. Speakers came from Benetton, J. Walter Thompson, Rich's, and Granada.

Details

Retail and Distribution Management, vol. 15 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-2363

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