Book review: Adland
I never studied advertising at university, and even if I did, I think nobody would have told me the history of the agencies who made the history of advertising. I’m not even sure there is a school book telling the history of this fascinating world. So I was very interested when Kogan Page sent me a copy of “Adland – a global history of advertising” written by Mark Tungate, a journalist and a copywriter I indirectly know through my friends in Diesel. It’s a great reading, a book to sip a chapter a day, with no hurry.
It tells the story of the men (and a few women) who created the great agencies we all know about, from J. Walter Thompson to BBDO, Publicis, Ogilvy and BBH (just to name a few). And the story is told after an impressive research and with a real passion that involves us in the reading that pictures the human side of a business worth US$400 billion a year worldwide.
A part from the feeling of getting “behind the scenes” of the history of advertising, what I really appreciated is the international perspective of the book. Even if I recognize that US and UK definitely had (and maybe still have) a crucial and leading role in making the history of the advertising business, there else and more to the discover and explore. This is the approach I always try to have writing Adverblog, therefore finding references to Brazil, Italy, Germany, The Netherlands and Spain (again, just to name a few) really made happy and increased even more my appreciation of AdLand. It’s a book to have (and read and even a good present for a friend who is approaching or already living in the advertising world.