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Principles of Advertising






Starch D. Principles of Advertising. N. Y. : McGraw-Hill, 1923. 276 p.




This treatise has been prepared with three aims in mind: (1) to make a broad and comprehensive analysis of the fundamental problems of advertising which would serve as a logical plan for the preparation of a book; (2) to develop, as far as practically feasible and possible at the present time, scientific methods in dealing with these problems; (3) to bring together as fully as possible all available material practical business experience; scientific, experimental, and statistical data which bear upon the problems outlined.

A thoroughgoing analysis of the broad problems was necessary at the outset in order to develop a consistent plan for correlating the various aspects of the subject, since no comprehensive plan covering all phases of advertising had been worked out before. The central conception of this book is that the primary function of advertising in business is to sell or to help sell. From this conception are derived the five fundamental problems or divisions of the book, namely, (1) To whom may the product be sold? (2) By what appeals may it be sold? (3) How may the appeals be presented most effectively? (4) By what mediums may the appeals be presented so as to reach the class of people to whom the product is to be sold? (5) What is a reasonable expenditure for promoting the sale of the product by means of printed sales efforts?

The most important idea which has been kept in mind in dealing with these problems has been the development of the scientific point of view and the application of corresponding methods. Waste is due largely to lack of information, to failure to use adequate means to secure the needed Information, and to poor judgment in handling the practical problems as they arise from day to day. Much emphasis has therefore been placed upon the development of adequate methods for obtaining facts on which the business executive may base his decision. Some of these methods, particularly those discussed in Part III, in several chapters in Part IV, and to some extent those discussed in Part II, are new so far as general use is concerned.


This book has been planned as a companion volume for one on problems which is now under way. The problem book will serve as the basis of class discussion and instruction in educational institutions. The present work will serve to give the broader analytical background and supply an organized body of information to which the business man may turn in considering his immediate problems. It will also provide a treatise for students of advertising.

I take pleasure in acknowledging the assistance which I have received from several persons. I wish particularly to express my appreciation to Mr. Earl С Norris, of Churchill-Hall, Inc., New York, who read the entire manuscript and made numerous useful suggestions; to Mr. Charles С Eaton, Librarian of the Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration and formerly of the Publicity Department of the General Electric Company, who read a considerable portion of the manuscript and made many helpful suggestions; and especially to my secretary, Miss Perle M. Hopson, who carefully read both the manuscript and the proof and materially improved the phraseology and clarity of the text.

I also wish to mention the valuable personal contacts which I have had with Street and Finney, Inc., Joseph Richards Co., H. K. McCann Co., Frank Seaman, Inc., Lord and Thomas, Ruthrauff and Ryan, W. B. Snow and Staff, and J. Walter Thompson Co.

Finally I desire to make acknowledgment to Printers' Ink for the numerous quotations made in the text and to Scott, Foresman & Co., who published my earlier book on Advertising in 1914, for some material which has been included in the present volume.

Harvard University, April, 1923

D. S.


The full text of the book can be found at bookstores, e-bookstores and libraries.


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See also:

Successful Direct Marketing Methods

Advertising Media A to Z

Strategic Brand Communication Campaigns

Books on Advertising

Books on PR

Books on Mass Media