Advertising services provide a way for a company or individual to inform the public about a product or service they want to sell. Advertisers hire establishments, such as ad agencies or marketing companies, to sell a client's product or service to the most likely buyers. Advertising services can include consulting, creating, and producing the actual ads; media placement; and account handling.
Full advertising services often begin with defining an advertiser's target audience, or the demographic profile of consumers most likely to buy their type of product. These statistics usually include age group, gender, education level, location, job type, income, and family living situation. Knowing these facts better enables agencies to come up with a plan to sell the product to a specific audience. This up-front work eliminates wasting time and money advertising to people who would not be interested in the product.
After determining the consumer profile, a campaign concept is created and in-house or sub-contracted agency employees use advertising services expertise to decide which media best reaches the client's customers. Media time or space is purchased by the agency for the advertiser. Media planners and buyers determine the best television and/or radio channels, Internet sites, or periodicals that will support the campaign's goal of reaching customers. Today's media choices are more numerous than ever because of the prevalence of Internet use.
The various forms of advertising include print, broadcast, electronic, and direct marketing. Print advertising includes newspaper, magazine, and periodical ads, and commercial printing, including brochures and fliers. Broadcast advertising includes television or radio commercials. Electronic advertising includes Internet ads on websites or blogs, e-newsletters or e-postcards emailed to a database of email addresses, and viral marketing such as Twitter or other social media posts. Direct marketing involves fliers, postcards, and/or promotional letters mailed to a database of home or business addresses.
Another advertising service that may be offered is the creative work performed to produce the advertising. Art directors, graphic designers, photographers, and copywriters are a few of the key players on a print ad creative team, with broadcast media requiring producers, directors, scriptwriters, video editors, and camera operators. Behind the scenes, other advertising services staff find and book talent for ads and commercials: voice talent, models, and actors. Coordinating all aspects of an advertiser's account, an account executive keeps abreast of the campaign's progress and communicates details and statuses to the advertiser.
Advertising services have come a long way since the Egyptians wrote sales messages on papyrus. Ads beamed into space, ads on school buses and buildings, and user-generated content for advertising copy are considered by consumers worldwide as a given part of today's marketing culture.