One sails his ship in our cereal bowls. Another one dances around our snack table with his cane. And a third one helps us get rid of dirt and grease in our houses. The advertising industry is filled with icons who have been spreading their slogans or catchy jingles around households for years. Recently, both the Wall Street Journal and Advertising Age reported on new exposure these old mascots are receiving in the social media space.
MDB Communication’s CEO, Cary Hatch, has a remarkable collection of at least 120 advertising icons. Many of these old friends have been somewhat reborn on the Internet and as a result, we have launched a new weekly social media feature called “Nostalgicon.” Our hopes are that these unforgettable icons will take you on a fun walk down memory lane.
Advertising icons became a popular branding tool in the 1950s, when television was introduced as a new medium. Speedy, the tablet-shaped, baby-faced boy promoting Alka-Seltzer is one example of a mascot that became a huge success. He starred in more than 200 TV commercials and also includes in-store gigs and playing jingles on his resume. However, when a new era of advertising brought shorter commercials and different creative thinking, ad icons were pushed out of the spotlight – but they never completely disappeared.
Today, old friends like the M&M’s, created in 1954, and the Michelin Man, first introduced in 1898, are given new life throughout the web. Social media opens up the opportunity of telling in-depth stories about the icons and the brand they are representing. It’s a scene for interaction and nobody does that job better than these icons. The M&M’s, for example, are generating thousands of “likes” and hundreds of comments on Facebook when they mention current events or show pictures of themselves goofing around in their office.
Icons are an important – and fun – part of the advertising industry. We’re excited to bring you the history of icons such as Cap’n Crunch, Mr. Peanut and Mr. Clean, just to name a few. Make sure to visit MDB Communications on any of our social media channels (Facebook, Twitter or our new Google+ page) every Wednesday afternoon for some “Nostalgicon” fun.