Thursday, September 3, 2009

Do Our Students Understand the Power of Advertising?

Teachers often avoid associating with what they feel is the crass commercialism of the business and advertising world. As a result, however, many of our students are unaware of the power and influence of advertising and how it shapes public opinion. This gives the major power brokers pretty much free reign over an uninformed public as can be seen by the ongoing despicable actions of the cigarette companies, auto makers, oil companies, and, more recently, investment bankers and health insurance providers, and how surprised the public was to find out they didn't have our best interests in mind.

Here is a little perception check.
AdAge magazine recently reported that Virgin Atlantic (the British airline owned by Sir Richard Branson) has moved its advertising account to a new agency called OMD. Can you guess how much an airline like Virgin Atlantic pays for advertising? My guess is that you will underestimate the amount.

The account will be run out of OMD's London and New York offices and the agency is set to begin work on the business after Labor Day. (I imagine they are spending the weekend celebrating.) The consolidation was done in the hope of developing better brand consistency around the globe.

So have you made your guess?
As part of a global consolidation of its marketing and media accounts, Virgin Atlantic has awarded its $30 million-plus traditional and digital global media business to Omnicom Group's OMD. The airline also consolidated its $65 million global ad account with Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe/Y&R. The U.S. portion of the media business is estimated to be worth $5 million to $10 million.

Perhaps we shouldn't look the other way but should help our students learn about the implications of this kind of influence if we are not armed with an understanding of the power of advertising and design.

Click on the heading above to learn more about the lucky advertising agency that just got this $30 million account.

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