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Literary Possibilities Of Advertising

Literary Possibilities Of Advertising image
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During Wie past ten or i welv : years, advertisments have been gradually abanöoning our rocks, fences, blind walls and monutatn scenery, and have been domestloating themselves in our saines ;uul newspapers. Tln-.v ia' withdrawn trom thelr wild ontdoor lile, and hare accepted the culture and refinemeni oí the drawlnrooni and bhe library. And. like other savage tilinga thai nave becoane tame, they seem ltfcelj ber reaults in bheir latter state than ia Uieir Eoa-rner cme. Instead of any longar divldIng mr admiration uiiu iiio beau t íes ol nature, they are aciiievlng a príoper öharm oí thciv own, and, by their comely aspect, attract ua to investltlicir cJiaracter and purport. II yon take up a Harper's or Century ol 1SSO, you wffll find very tew aüvertlsments, and tewer süil tha1 eau be termed beautlful. Bu1 to-doy, 11 the literary contente öl the magazine fai! t 0 move yon. yoi may be rrasonaiiiy sure i)f ftndlng entertainment In the advertislng pages. Riey, are pretty, amusing, and ofteü interestlng, And fchere is good reason why they should be: they represent the outlay of unioh money and ao little brains. If every pairo f tlu magasine letterpre88 cit as i-arciull.v and nlcely con6tructd as every pai; ■ i: ilic advertlsing socthai, it is not too muc-h t(i say tliat American literatura migb.1 be bbe galner. In hort. advertlslng has become a science and a.u art, and clerer men follow it as a. trade and proicssiou - nor aro tlicy Ul-p&yed tot tbtír efforts. To say a vitad thing in few and simple words is nu easy matter: it, requires aoaae llterary ability and a good ncqoajntance with human nature. Some of the best advertlaments are reïlly epigrammatlc- terse, wltty, and memarable, otiiers. Uke thm ol e certain pbobographlng Instrument ("Tou presa the button- we do the rest") are not only modela of poüii finid breylty, but by a. happy accident, are ai such widc applieation as to have fairly entered Into the langu-age. A;iy eütemee tha1 can lx nsed as a o-t of colloquia 1 joke is Invaluable; and, of all the methods of callinp; attention to 8 w i 11known kind n' soap, none, perbaps, was better ot more succesaful than the simple "Good morning- have you tmed 's aoap ?" many Jocose persons, on meeting thelr triends a1 breaikfast, have cootributed to the matutinal hilariiy ly this Inqulrjr ? The English are said to "de.arly love a lord." ffr Americana dearly love a joke, and our best jokers are rich men in consequence. Agaln, some oi our leadiüg clothiera and dry-goods pieople have adopted a pithy and succi;:ot form of appeal, couched in home'.y, straigbforward phraeeology, as o; au artleas person who reveáis to yoii his wfiole heart, and inadvertent!y. as i nciT, supplies a bit oi inforuiation -which m.iv stand vou in cood Stead. Every word of tillóse little addresses has been weiheá, and its effect calculated. Xo wonder that tlieir unknown authors comniand larger salarles Unan most avowed Hterary men: tlieir dozen linps produce larger returns thun do Qinety-nine out of n luindred popular romances. Tliey are men of ideas. Oí ate. too. there ias been a new departnre in the way of apposite ■ p:.. aUions from Shakespeare and ot.her well-known authors - a conple of lines or so - made to confina, as it were, the merits of a given article of commerce. ïhe pohit of these advei-tismenrs is their comical and preposterous combtnation of apparent feücity wlth actual incongruit.-. . Tliackeray, in liis "Virglniams," incnis a brand oí tobáceo, and stylcs it the "Three ('ast les." and he says of it: "There is no letter and sweeter tobáceo made tlian the 'Three Castles.' " TluTeupon, an ingenious bacco mamifacturer ïiamed oiie oí Iiis brands of tobáceo "Three Castles," and then quoted. in his advertisment, the above eulogium of Tfaackeray's! An important element In the popularity oí advertisments is the excellent pictures tliat often llluatrate them. They are drawn h.v ökilled artista, and maiiy of them are wortb preserving tiicir intrin.sic mcrit. The Photogravure processes have ateo added huirciy to tte attractlvenesa of advértising paires; and it veally seems j)rol able tliat, as time pire on, our leadIng artista and anthors ma.v' derive an important porSon oí tlieir professional receipts f rom ádvertiaing work. The artista have a'.ieady led the way: ■ til the autbors follow ? Poesíbly tiicy are foilowing arleady. The Fitchburg Railroad and circul&tes among is patrons a Httlr book by W. I). Howells, deácribing a Journey mi tlielr road. We niay venture io suppoee thai Mr". Howells vvas pald, and perhaps well pald, for tkls use oí íiis material. A famous Kterary and dramatic critic has written ;i "guide boot," givihg a most alluring accouní ol tfie reglons fhrpugb whicb anotlier great r:u,u ,i; passes; I for■nw u.-uiy thousand dollars lio ■j. i: tor doing it. 1 believe gome large íirma, not in tlic pubjlshlag business, ionally buy all rigiita in the ■iirks of wU-known aufrhors, and produce them in sueh :i way .-is to - lic purchaser tn mind of the fact thnt the besi woolena, or Boape, or piano (a.s tin1 case ïnay be) are bo be bad only at the shop where the carne from. ■ Niy (pari . I sh,-i!i nol be surprised to Bee this principie followedi out more methodically in the future. If ,i-s oannot support lile m the royalties tlicy receive trom "regular" pubUshers, they must' either go mit of business, oc sell bheir waree a.s a ïuicleus or vchiclo of advertisments. It nmy go againsi the grain at tlrst; bul it is mil a bil more derogatery than to diapose of thcm in any other way. rk writlng is one thtng, I selllng la another; lt la n trade, and why ehould H nol strenffthen Itsell ty o i'iui uallj beneficia! alliance n Itli ■ tradea '.' The advertiser Ishea to reach ih bes1 clasa of people in i tie mus! belling and efiectlvie mainner. Hoi can '.;■. d,i thla better than by Ifylnj? oimse I In - ime a as wlth wotíi ni, aay, a popular uovelial 1 'w'ay" musí b % nelther Incongruoua nor In any résped ottenslve; II musí, patlher, enhance the beauty and attractivenesa of the voluine. i; la a question of insenuity, easlly solved, i ■ uld off ir .■ ment; and the author, beiag pald, could affoi-d u glve Ms work - so llteratnre and commerce uld bc galners. Certainly, advertísing i a greal power; and w have yi'i bo leárn to how inany widely "beneflclal asea i may be applled. Printers' Ink.


Old News
Ann Arbor Courier