There are many choices available to the advertiser for the media. Effectively mixing these media is an important part of designing quality advertising. To do so the advantages and disadvantages of each individual medium should be understood so that the advertising campaign features successful combinations.  

Some of the types of advertising media are:- 1. Mass Media 2. Print Media 3. Traditional Support Media 4. Display or Indoor Publicity 5. Outdoor or Mural Advertising 6. Press Advertising 7. Radio Advertising 8. Television Advertising 9. Internet Advertising 10. Sponsored Advertising Films 11. Point of Purchase Advertising.

Types of Advertising Media

Types of Advertising Media – Top 3 Types (With Advantages and Disadvantages)

There are many choices available to the advertiser for the media. Effectively mixing these media is an important part of designing quality advertising. To do so the advantages and disadvantages of each individual medium should be understood so that the advertising campaign features successful combinations.


David Kaplan’s study in 2003 on masses tuned to mass media showed the following information about degree of attention of consumers to various media:

It helps to know how attentive consumers are to various media. The degree of concentration varies considerably in different methods of communication. Word-of-mouth tops as 63% people in the survey said they pay more attention to brand messages conveyed by word of mouth. Second was sampling followed by in-store messages and mass media advertisements (27%). The factors like target audience, product category, and media programming all have an impact on how closely the ad is watched.

Each of these is discussed as below with their advantages and disadvantages:

Type # 1. The Mass Media:

Mass media includes TV, Radio, magazine newspaper and outdoor activities used for advertising the product/brand. Television and Radio are also called the broadcast media whereas the newspapers, magazines, special purpose magazines and Journals are categorized as the print media.


a. Television:

It has been often said that television is the ideal advertising medium. It is also reputed to be the most glamorous advertising medium. Its ability to combine visual images, sound, motion and colour, presents the advertiser with the opportunity to develop the most creative and imaginative appeals of any medium. However, TV does have certain problems that limit or even prevent its use by many advertiser.

Advantages of Television:

TV has numerous advantage over other medium, including creativity and impact, coverage and cost effectiveness, captivity and attention and selectivity and flexibility and many more.


(i) Creativity and Impact:

The greatest advantage of TV is the opportunity it provides for presentation of messages. The interaction of sight and sound offers tremendous creative flexibility and makes possible dramatic, life like presentation of product and services. TV commercials are more appealing, entertaining and build image of a brand that help even the dull product appear interesting. It is an excellent medium for demonstrating the function of a product or service. This is the most effective way to communicate about the product with audience.

(ii) It has a Very High Reach:

Television reaches-large audiences. Nearly everyone regardless of age, sex, income or educational level, watches some TV programs. So marketer can appeal to a large audience in cost efficient manner. Marketer feel that TV lets them reach mass markets i.e., a broad target audience.


This is the reason for it being most popular for companies selling mass-consumption products. TV has become indispensable to large consumer packaged goods marketers, telecommunication companies, car makers and major retailers. Companies like AT&T and Procter and Gamble spend nearly two thirds of their media budget on this medium.

(iii) Low Cost per Contact:

Even though total cost of running the ad on TV is very high, the cost per contact is very low. This low cost per contact justifies, for example, spending Rs. 2 crore on a thirty second spot on the prime time is good as the audience at that time will be crores of population in our country. The average permit time shows reach millions of homes even in the USA and UK and during top rated shows like American IDOL viewers are more than double of the regular program the average cost per thousand (CPM) goes down likewise.

(iv) High Frequency Potential:


These days UHF television broadcasting is used by TV stations which means ultra-high frequency over the air transmission of TV signals. They are used for both analogue and digital TV broadcasts. UHF channels are given higher channel number say from 2 to 80. A single ad can be made to reach millions of viewers simultaneously due to the high frequency potential of TV. Radio also uses the same technology but print media cannot reach that many audience.

(v) High Intrusion Value and Attention:

TV is basically intrusive as the commercials impose themselves on viewers when they watch their favourite programs. Unless an effort is made to avoid them, most of us are exposed to thousands of commercials every year. Remote controls, DVD and other automatic devices have made it easier for TV viewers to avoid TV messages. However, the remaining viewers and likely to devote some attention to many advertising messages. TV ads have an impact on consumers because of their heavy repetition and exposure to catchy slogans and jingles.

(vi) Selectivity and Flexibility:


TV has been criticized for being a non-selective medium, since it is difficult to reach a precisely defined market segment through the use of TV advertising. But some selectivity is possible due to variations in the composition of audience as a result of program, content, broadcast time and geographic coverage e.g., Sunday morning caters to children and afternoon programs are geared for sports and evening for family. With growth of cable TV, advertisers refine their coverage further by appealing to groups with specific interests such as – sports, news, history, arts, and music as well as specific demographic groups.

Some cable networks reach young, upscale women who like to try new products, as well as recommend them to others. Ads can be scheduled to run repeatedly or to take advantage of special occasions.

Limitations of Television:

Although TV has the most creative perspective, the medium has several disadvantages that limit its use by many advertisers. These are greater clutter, high cost per ad, lack of selectivity, the fleeing nature of TV messages, and low recall due to clutter, limited viewer attention and distrust of TV ads.

(i) Costs:

TV has the efficiency to reach larger audience, but it is an expensive medium to use. Not only the time bought is a huge expense but also to make a commercial video or film to be televised is very expensive. Some commercials are developed for special ethic markets using creative strategies that are high cost driven. The high costs of producing commercials often drive the small size and the medium-size advertisers out of the market.

(ii) Lack of Selectivity:

Though some selectivity can be had by advertiser on TV through variations in programs and cable TV, but the advertisers who are seeking a very small and specific audience find it impossible to reach them. TV extends beyond their market and thus is no cost effective for them e.g., a very expensive Pashmina shawl has a select and specific audience. For the marketer of such a product TV is of limited utility as it will reach audience which he does not seek.

(iii) Clutter:

Clutter remains the primary problem with TV advertising especially on syndicated programs. The issues of fleeing messages and shorter commercials are compounded by the fact that the advertiser’s message is only one of many spots and other non-programming material seen during a commercial break, so it may have trouble being noticed. There is a fear in the minds of advertisers of the potential decline in effectiveness because of such a clutter.

(iv) Fleeting Message:

TV advertisements usually last only 20-30 seconds and sometimes even less than that time and leave nothing tangible for the viewer to examine and consider. Commercials have become shorter and shorter as the demand for a limited amount of broadcast time has intensified and advertiser try to get more impressions from their media budgets. Many advertisers have themselves gone for shorter spots for reasons of lower expenses but the outlay on creative advertisement videos or films calls for longer spots on the TV and also very frequent impression for them to be effective.

(v) Limited Viewer Attention:

When the advertiser buys time on the TV program he is not sure of guaranteed exposure of his advertisement though he has spent for the commercial to reach large audience. There is increasing evidence that the size of the viewing audience shrinks during a commercial break. People leave the room to go to eat and drink during such commercials or they are distracted in some other way during the commercials. Moreover, some households have either cable or satellite services and receive at an average a 100 channels which means that there are more viewing options available.

These factors contribute to the problem of zipping and zapping. Zipping occurs when the viewer fast forwards through commercials as they playback a previously recorded program. With the increased penetration of DVR’s more people are watching recorded shows and fast forward all commercials.

Zapping refers to changing the channel to avoid commercials. All TV sets come with remote controls which enable viewers to zap the program whenever the commercials are disturbing them. This suitably shift over from one channel to another to avoid commercials is bad for the advertiser who has paid dearly for the time to the media.

Many advertisers believe that providing different execution of a campaign theme is one way to maintain attention of viewers. But this is not so easy as many consumers do not what to watch commercials at all.

(vi) Distrust and Negative Evaluation:

Many critics of advertising feel that TV commercials personify everything that is wrong with the industry. Critics feel this only about TV commercials because of their pervasiveness and the intrusive nature of the medium. Consumer are seen as defenceless against the barrage of TV ads, since they cannot control the transmission of the message and what appears on the screens.

Viewers dislike TV advertising when they believe it is offensive, uninformative or are too frequent or when they do not like their content. Studies have shown that out of all kinds of advertising forms, distrust is generally the highest in T.V. many critics have shown conserve over effects of advertising on specific groups, such as children or the elderly segment.

b. Radio:

Radio is an important media for advertising though it gets no respect from many advertisers. It was dominated by network programming and national advertisers before the growth of TV. It had evolved into a local advertising medium. It is a pervasive medium used by millions of audiences in the country.

It plays an integral role in the life style of people and has the power to reach and influence their buying behaviour. It has survived as an advertising medium since ages because of the advantages that make it effective way of communication with customers. There are some advantages in this way of communication with customers. There are some advantages which encourage marketers to use this medium.

Advantages of Radio:

Radio has advantages over other media, including:

(i) Cost and efficiency,

(ii) Receptivity,

(iii) Selectivity,

(iv) Flexibility,

(v) Mental imagery, and

(vi) Integrated marketing opportunities.

(i) Cost and Efficiency:

It’s a low cost medium. Radio commercials are not expensive to produce. They require only a script to be read by Radio announcer or a copy of a pre-recorded message that can be broadcasted by the station.

The cost of Radio is law as compared with T.V. Low cost of T.V. makes it most effective of all advertising media and the low absolute cost means the budget needed for effective Radio campaign is lower than that of other media. Low cost means that advertisers can build more reach and frequency into the media schedule within a certain budget. Advertisers use Radio as a fast and relatively low cost medium to get their names known in the market place.

(ii) Receptivity:

Radio provides the listeners with a very receptive environment for their advertising messages. People consider Radio advertising to be more personally relevant to them than ads on TV. Studies show that listeners are more emotionally attached towards Radio since they have been connected to their Radio station since ages.

(iii) Selectivity:

This is a major advantage of Radio as it allow high degree of selectivity through various program formats and geographic coverage of the numerous stations. It allows focus on specialized audiences such as – certain demographic and life style groups. They have formats such as – easy listening, classical music news talk, jazz and talk shows. Customers like college students, teenagers and working adults can be reached more easily through Radio than any other media. Radio can reach where other media cannot.

(iv) Flexibility:

It is the most flexible of all the advertising media because it has very short closing, period, i.e., advertisers can change the message almost up to the time it goes on air. Radio commercials can be produced, changed and scheduled on very short notice. Radio advertisers can easily adjust their messages to local market conditions and marketing situations.

(v) Mental Imagery:

Radio encourages its listeners to use their imagination when processing a commercial message. While the creative options of Radio are limited, many advertisers take advantage of the absence of a virtual element to let consumers create their own picture of what is happening in a Radio.

(vi) Integrated Marketing Opportunities:

Radio provides marketer with a variety of integrated marketing opportunities. Radio can be used in combination with other media including television, magazines and newspaper to provide advertisers with synergistic effects in generating awareness and communicating their message. A study conducted by Jonathan Cheng found that the synergistic use of Radio with TV and newspapers had a positive impact on brand awareness and brand selection. Radio stations are integral part of many communities and program hosts are popular and influential figures.

Limitations of Radio:

Advertisers use radio stations and personalities to enhance their involvement with a local market and to influence local retailers.

There are several factors limiting the effectiveness of Radio as an advertising medium. They are creative limitations, fragmentation of audience, problematic buying process, limited research data, limited listener attention and clutter. The media planner must study them before deciding to go for Radio as a medium for advertising.

(i) Creative Limitations:

The absence of visual image limits the creativity of this media-product cannot be shown by the advertiser and no demonstration about its use can be given to consumers on Radio. Because of this limitation many companies tend to ignore Radio, and even the agencies assign junior people to develop Radio commercials.

(ii) Fragmentation of Audience:

There is a high level of fragmentation of audience due to a large number of stations. The percentage of market tuned to any particular station is usually very small. Any major city with AM and FM stations listening audience. Advertisers who want to reach millions of people through advertising media schedule may have to buy time on a number of stations to cover the national to the local market.

(iii) Problematic Buying Procedures:

It is very problematic for advertiser to go for media planning and purchasing process when he wants to use Radio on a nationwide spot basis. Getting information, evaluating the contracts for time with so many Radio stations that operate in the country can be very difficult and time consuming process. Many advertisers shirk these chaotic procedure of Radio networks even though the scenario has improved over the last few years.

(iv) Limited Research Data:

Audience research data on Radio are often limited as compared with TV, magazines or newspapers, most Radio stations are small operations and have hardly any revenue to go for detailed study of their audiences. Most users of Radio are local firms that cannot support research on Radio listenership in their markets. Thus, media planners do not have as much information about audience to enable them to guide the firms for buying radios time.

(v) Limited Listener Attention:

Another issue with Radio is that it is difficult to retain the attention of listeners to the commercials. Radio programming, particularly music, is often background to some other activity and may not receive the listener’s full attention. They may miss all or some of the commercials. Making listeners to pay attention to the commercials is very difficult.

If they are in cars they still may be more attentive audience. Most people change programs during commercials. Sometimes they may be only half exposed to advertising broadcasts. A research study recently found that half of commuters surveyed, who own a cell phone were listening to the Radio very less as compared to the last few years.

(vi) Competition from Digital Media:

Radio is facing threats from several digital based technologies that are impacting the listeners of radio commercials. A threat to conventional broadcast is the growth of satellite Radio which bounces signals off satellites stationed from east to west and north to southern parts of countries. The fast growing audio alternatives include HD radio, MP3 players and online listening via Internet.

(vii) Clutter:

This problem is there also with TV where at an average nearly 10 minutes of commercials are run every hour. In the rush hour, commercials are even more than fifteen in an hour. This makes the listener switch to other station rather than listening to a long block of ads.

Advertiser must make commercials that break through the clutter or use heavy repetition to make sure that their messages reach consumers. Many Radio stations have limited the number of advertisements in an hour to address the issue of clutter. Some have reduced.

Type # 2. The Print Media:

i. Magazines:

Magazines have grown rapidly to serve the educational, informational and entertainment needs of wide range of reader in the customer as well as industrial markets. They are the most specialized media. Some like the Reader Digest, Time, and Newsweek have general mass appeal publications; many others are target to special audience like Femina, Junior Statesman Industry Digest, Upstream, Rig zone etc.

There is a magazine designed to appeal every type of customer in terms of demographics, life style, activities, interests and profession. The wide variety of magazines are an appealing medium to a large number of advertisers. Although TV accounts for the largest budget of advertising, magazines are used by many companies for advertising consumer products to industrial products.

Types of Magazines:

(a) Consumer Magazines:

These are the magazines bought by general public for information or through distribution system or both. These are best suited to marketers interested in reaching general consumer products and services as well as to companies trying to reach a specified target market. The most frequently advertised category in consumer magazines are auto motives, telecommunication consumer survivors and business, toiletries and cosmetics survivors, toiletries and cosmetics, computer’s, office equipment, stationary etc.

(b) Farm Publications:

This is directed to farmers and their families. They have information about farming, raising cattle, poultry. In India, farm publications are not perceived as business as agriculture is not perceived as business income.

(c) Business Magazines/Journals:

These are those magazines or journals which are published for specific business, industries or occupations. The Accountant is for Charted Accountants, Architectural forum is for Architects, Industrial Engineering for Engineers, Health care targets Dentists and other medical professionals etc.

The business publications are frequently specific types of professional people with particular interests and give them important information relevant to the industry, occupation and carriers. Much marketing happens at the trade and business-to-business level, where one company sells its products to another.

Advantages of Magazines:

Magazines have a number of advantages which make them attractive as an advertising medium.

They are known for their:

(a) Selectivity,

(b) Reproductive Quality,

(c) Performance,

(d) Creativity Flexibility,

(e) Prestige,

(f) Consumer Receptivity and Engagement, and

(g) Services.

(a) Selectivity:

Magazines have the ability to reach a specific target audience. They are the most selective of all media except direct mail. Most magazines are published for specialized interest group. Femina, Women’s World, Cosmopolitan are generally read by women, Playboy by men, Sports World by sportspersons. Reader Digest, Time and Newsweek can provide a high degree of demographic selectivity through their special demographic editions. Most magazines for consumers are targeted at different demographic markets.

(b) Reproductive Quality:

Another valuable attribute of magazines is its reproduction quality of the ads. They are printed in high quality paper and use printing process that provide excellent reproduction in colour or black and white. Their reproduction quality is far superior to that offered by the newspaper. The quality of print is innovative creative work by agencies.

(c) Performance:

Magazines is a media which has long time span. Radio and TV messages have a very short life span characterized by fleeting messages, even newspapers are discarded after being read. Magazines are kept for several months for reference. An advantage of long life span is that consumers can read them at ease whenever they have time and examine in comprehensive details. They keep consumers and industrial buyers highly involved with the product or services. Magazines have generally got the quality of being passed on to many other readers on multiple occasions, this is advantageous to the advertisers.

(d) Creativity Flexibility:

Magazines offer flexibility in terms of type, size and placement of advertising material. Some magazines offer a variety of special pages that can enhance the creative appeal of the ad and increase attention and readership. Gate folds enable an advertiser to make striking presentations by using a third page that folds out and gives extra-large spread to the ad. It is often found on inside pages.

There are also bleed pages where the advertisement extends all the way to the end of the page with no margin or white space around the ad. Bleed pages give the ad an impression of being larger and make a more dramatic impact. Various inserts are used by magazine like coupons, cards, recipe, records, even product samples. Cosmetic companies may introduce new fragrances and others may promote detergents, deodorants with inserts.

(e) Prestige:

A positive feature of magazine advertising is the prestige the product gains from advertising publications with favourable image. Companies whose products rely on perceived quality, reputation and image buy space in high quality prestigious publication with high quality editorial content.

Consumers of such companies have high level of interest in the advertising page. Architectural Digest provides an impressive editorial environment that includes high quality photography and artwork. The magazine’s upscale readers are likely to have favourable image of the publication that may transfer to the products advertised on its pages.

(f) Consumer Receptivity and Engagement:

Consumers are more receptive to advertisements in magazines and newspaper than another media. They are purchased because the information they have interests the readers and provides additional information that may be of value in making purchase decision. Studies have shown that magazines are a primary source of information for a variety of products and services including automobiles, clothing, grooming products, travel and financial planning.

(g) Services:

Magazines provide additional services of research studies that they have conducted on consumers. Many magazines give special services like calling retailers through their merchandizing staff to let them know about products being advertised in their publication and to encourage them to display or promote the product. Selective binding is a computerized production process that allows the creation of hundreds of copies of a magazine in one continuous sequence. It enables magazines to target and address specific groups within a magazine’s circulation base.

Disadvantages of Magazines:

Although magazines are known to have many advantages over the other media, there are some disadvantages:

(a) Costly Medium,

(b) Long Lead Time,

(c) Limited Reach and Frequency, and

(d) Clutter and Competition.

(a) Costly Medium:

Magazine is an expensive media and its costs vary according to the size of the audience they reach and their selectivity. Advertisement in large selling magazines can be very expensive. Media planners generally focus on relative costs of a publication in reaching target audience, yet they may recommend a magazine with a high cost per thousand because of its ability to reach small, specialized market segment.

(b) Long Lead Time:

Magazines have a long lead time to place an ad. Most major publications have 30 to 60 days lead time, which means space must be purchased and the ad must be prepared well in advance of the actual publication date. No change in the art or copy of the ad can be made after the closing date. The lead time taken by magazine and cannot be as timely as other media such as – Radio, TV or newspaper in responding to current events or changing market condition.

(c) Limited Reach and Frequency:

Magazines are generally as effective as other media in offering reach and frequency though they have thin penetration of households. Reader’s Digest has the third highest circulation of any magazine but represents only eleven percent of the households in the US. Advertisers who want to penetrate deep into the households or want to have a broad-reach strategy have to use magazines in conjunction with other media.

Since most magazines are monthly or fortnightly, the opportunity for building frequency through the use of the publication is limited. Most advertisers try to achieve frequency by adding other magazines with similar audiences to the media schedule.

(d) Clutter and Competition:

While clutter is more in case of broadcast media, magazines too have this drawback. The more successful a magazines becomes, the more advertising pages it attracts, and this leads to clutter. Magazines gauge their success in terms of how many advertising pages they sell. The magazine publishers do try to control the clutter by maintaining a reasonable balance of editorial pages to advertising.

A clutter makes it difficult for an advertiser to gain reader’s attention into the ad, so a number of companies have started publishing their own magazines to build relationships with their customers. Small firms cannot afford to take this initiative as every small firm cannot afford to publish magazine of their product for regular circulation to its audience. Clutter cannot be as serious an issue with print media as it is for TV and Radio. Since consumers tend to be more respective and tolerant of print advertising. They can also control their exposure to a magazine ad by just turning the page.

ii. Newspapers:

It is another major form of print media and the largest of all print media in terms of money volume. Billions of dollars are spent on newspaper advertising. They are especially important medium for local advertisers, particularly retailers. They are also valuable to national advertising. Newspapers vary in terms of their characteristics and their role as an advertising medium.

Types of Newspapers:

(a) Daily Newspapers:

They are published every day and are found in cities and large towns across the country. Many areas have more than one paper and they are circulated across the country the same day. There are further classification of daily newspaper in terms of morning, day time and evening editions. They provide detailed coverage of news, issues, sports and business events on daily basis.

(b) Weekly Newspaper:

These originate in small towns or suburbs where the volume of news and advertising cannot support a daily newspaper. Their focus is news, sports events of local areas. They have less average circulations than national daily news. Weeklies appeal to local advertisers because of their geographic focus and lower absolute cost.

(c) National Newspapers:

These are newspapers with national circulation and editorial content with a nationwide appeal. They are an excellent media vehicle for reaching people nationwide like The Economic Times, Wall Street Journal. They have affluent readership base as has been seen in various surveys. National newspapers appeal primarily to large national advertisers and to regional advertisers that use specific geographic editions of these publications.

(d) Special Audience Newspapers:

Many papers offer specialized editorial content and are published for particular groups like labour unions, gardening lovers, professional organizations and industries and hobbyist People working in advertising read Advertising Age, people in interior decoration read magazines which have articles on best home styles etc. Many colleges publish their newspaper which offer excellent medium for reaching out to college students.

(e) Newspaper Supplement:

They are magazine type supplements primarily put in newspaper’s Sunday editions. The supplements contain stores of local interest, both national and local advertisers buy the ad space in them. They are valuable to those advertisers who want to use the newspaper yet get four-colour reproduction quality in their ads.

Advantages of Newspapers:

Newspapers have a number of advantages, which make them popular among both local and national advertisers.

They are:

(a) Extensive Penetration,

(b) Flexibility of Newspaper as Media,

(c) Geographic Selectivity,

(d) Readers Involvement and Acceptance of Message, and

(e) Services Offered by Newspaper.

(a) Extensive Penetration:

The most important advantage of newspapers is the high degree of market coverage they offer to advertiser. Newspaper reach maximum number of households in any literate society with middle level or higher incomes and education levels. They are a mass media so they provide maximum reach to all segments of population with the advertiser’s message. They are published nearly daily or weekly so the adviser can build a high level of frequency into the medium schedule.

(b) Flexibility of Newspaper as Media:

Newspapers allow flexibility in terms of requirements for producing and running the ads. They can be written, laid down and prepared in a matter of hours. For most dailies the closing time by which the ad must be received is usually only 24 hours before publication.

The short production time and closing dates make newspapers an excellent medium for responding to current events or presenting timely information to consumers. The other dimensions of newspaper’s flexibility stems from the creative options they make available to advertisers. Newspaper ads can be produced and run in various shapes, sizes and formats. They can use colours or special inserts to gain the interest of readers.

(c) Geographic Selectivity:

Newspapers offer the advertiser more geography selective areas than other mediums. Advertisers can vary their coverage by choosing a paper or papers that reach areas with greatest sales potential. Many companies use newspapers in their regional marketing strategies.

Newspapers let them feature products on a market-by-market basis, respond and adapt campaigns to local market conditions, and tie into more retail promotions, fostering more support from the trade. Local advertisers like retailers are interested in geographic selectivity or flexibility within a specific market or trade. Their goal is to concentrate their advertising on the areas where most of their customers are.

(d) Readers Involvement and Acceptance of Message:

Consumers accept and get involved with the papers and ads they contain. A typical newspaper reader spends time each day and more during weekends for news, information and entertainment and takes consumption decisions after that. Some people buy newspaper to read the advertisements it contains because they have to make purchase decisions after reading them. Newspaper advertising has been rated the most believable form of advertising in many studies in the USA and also in India.

(e) Services Offered by Newspaper:

Newspapers also offer merchandizing services and programs to manufacturers that make the trade aware of ads being run or the company’s product and help convince local retailers that they should stock, display and promote the term. They give local market information through their knowledge of market conditions and research like readership studies and consumer surveys. They help small advertisers by writing and producing their ads as they cannot afford professional agencies for this purpose.

Limitations of Newspapers:

While newspapers have many advantages, they also have the following disadvantages:

(a) Poor Reproduction Quality:

Newspaper is an advertising medium which has poor reproduction quality of ads due to their usage of coarse paper stock, absence of colour and lack of time which is required by papers if they have to go for quality reproduction. Some advertisers may not require the very high quality reproduction. Ads desiring high quality production like food products, fashions, jewellery etc., go for magazine ads rather than newspaper. Although some colour has been made available in recent years in the newspapers but they yet do not match the quality of magazines.

(c) Short Life Span:

Newspaper is generally kept for or day, so an ad is unlikely to have an impact beyond the day of publication, and repeat exposure is very unlikely. Many consumers read newspapers only for a while and probability is that they don’t even open the sections of it. For consumers, ads in newspaper are ineffective.

(c) Lack of Selectivity:

Newspapers are not geographically selective but they are not a selective medium in terms of demographics or life style characteristics. Most newspapers reach broad and very diverse groups of consumers, which makes it difficult for markets to focus on narrowly defined market segments. Adding to this problem is the short time span that a consumer spends with newspaper and the possibility that they may not even open some sections of paper.

(d) Clutter:

Like most other media, newspaper too are affected by clutter. Most part of newspaper is devoted to advertisements. The message of an advertisers must compete with messages of numerous other advertisers for consumer’s attention and interest. There also are few options to make ads attractive. In such a situation, it is difficult for advertiser to break through the clutter without using costly measures such large space buys.

Type # 3. Traditional Support Media:

a. Out-of Home Advertising:

Bill boards, street furniture, alternate media and transit as well as specific forms of Radio are out of home advertising media.

Outdoor advertising existed since the existence of mankind. Egyptians and Greeks used it thousands of years ago. It is a pervasive communication forum particularly if you live in an urban or sub urban area. Bill boards, spectacular display and vinyle wrapped posters are allowing advertisers to participate in message delivering at places out of customers home. Everyone is exposed to either sign boards or electronic bill boards on walls, halls, big building sideways etc. It truly is a persuasive medium. Many countries have restricted the use of billboards on the interstate highways.

Digital Outdoor Media:

One of the fastest growing outdoor industries is the digital out of home-media.

It has:

(i) Video advertising networks which includes video screen that appear in offices, stores, theatres, health clubs, bars, restaurants, sports areas etc.

(ii) Digital Bill Boards or screens which transmit in LED or LCD technologies.

The digital out-of home media in US accounts for over 91.9 billion in advertising revenues, due to its ability to be creative, attract attention, and engage the consumers.

Alternative Out-of-Home Media:

Several other forms of outdoor advertising are also available including aerial advertising, place based, mobile boards and more.

(i) Aerial Advertising – Airplane pulling banners, skywriting all constitute other forms of outdoor advertising available to the marketer called aerial advertising. They do not have specific target market. Sports events, special event sales for many products are promoted with the help of aerial advertising.

(ii) Mobile Billboards – This is another outdoor medium where lorries, cars, vans etc., are painted for advertisements by the marketer. This media can lead to high number of impressions, high level of recall and readership and are very likely to have impact on sales. A number of companies as big as McDonald are using this media.

b. In-Store-Media:

Advertisers use in-store media such as in-store ads, aisle displays, store leaflets, in store TV to reach shoppers at the place where they buy. A study reveals that one third of shoppers are influenced with in-store media. Today advertiser wants to reach consumer at their point of purchase providing additional product information while reducing their overall marketing efforts.

Transit Advertising:

Another form of out of home advertising is transit advertising. This is targeted towards millions of customers who use commercial transportation facilities including buses, taxis, metro trains, trolleys, airplanes and subways.

There is a greater women work force these days where this medium can target them while they are in transit. It is a popular medium for all others who use public transport on regular basis. They are popular because of lower costs, frequency of exposures, flexibility and point of sale presence.

Transit advertising can be of many kinds:

(i) Inside Cards are placed above seats and luggage area, for advertising products, services or restaurants. There is ability to change the message and visibility provides the advertiser with a more attention getting medium.

(ii) Outside Posters- advertisers use various forum of outdoor transit posters to promote products and services. They may appear on the sides, backs, and roofs of houses, buses, taxis, trains and subway trolley. It is a sophisticated medium as demonstrated by technologies developed e.g., animated electronic boards.

(iii) Station, Platform and Terminal Posters – Floor displays, island showcases, and electronic signs are other forms of transit advertising which appears in trains or subway stations, airline terminals and the like are all forms of transit advertising. Bus shelters often provide the advertiser with expanded coverage where other outdoor boards may be restricted.

Advantages of Outdoor Advertising:

(i) Wide coverage of local markets – Proper placement of bill boards etc., can lead to broad base exposure in local marketers. There would be a day when presence of the ad would attract Millions of customers.

(ii) Geographic Flexibility and Frequency – Because purchase cycles are typically for a month consumers are exposed to ads a number of times resulting in high level of frequency. Ads placed along highways, near stores can reach people in specific geographic and demographic areas. Local, regional and even national marketers may be covered with outdoor advertising.

(iii) Efficiency & Effectiveness – These ads are very competitive when compared to other media. The CPM is for less than that of TV magazines, Radio and newspapers. Outdoor advertising has a significant impact on sales, particularly when it is clubbed up with other tools of promotion.

(iv) Creativity and ability to create awareness – Outdoor ads are very creative with large prints, colours, digital signs attract attention of customers. Because of its frequent impact, this type of advertising leads to high levels of awareness.

(v) Production capabilities – Modern technology has made it easy to make digital ads and change them in minutes. As these ads can be made in very less time they allow a rapid turnaround time.

(vi) Timeliness – Many outdoor ads appear in shopping areas or near these areas or on vehicles taking customers to these areas. They result in timely exposures and are very effective.

Limitations of Outdoor Advertising:

(i) Limited message capabilities – The speed with which the consumers pass by this outdoor ad, exposure time is short, so message has to be limited to a few words only. Lengthy appeals are not likely to be effective. Some transit forms are not conducive to creative messages.

(ii) Waste coverage – While it is possible to reach very specific audiences, in many cases purchase of outdoor ads results in high degree of waste coverage. It is not likely that everyone driving past a bill board is a part of the target media.

(iii) Wear out – Because of high frequency of exposures, outdoor ad may lead to a quick wear out. People may get tired to see the same bill board every day while going to the work place or market.

(iv) Cost concerns – The costs of outdoor ads are increasing due to decreasing signage available and higher costs associated with inflatables. This makes out door ads expensive in both an absolute and a relative sense.

(v) Measurement issues – The problem arising with outdoor advertising is the measuring reach, frequency and other effects.

(vi) Image problem – It has been seen that outdoor advertising suffers some image problems as well as some disregard among consumers. The reason could be that the consumers demand much more information about a product they want to purchase rather than what these sign boards can provide.

Advantages and Disadvantage of Transit Advertising:

Transit advertising shares some advantages and disadvantages of other outdoor media, transit has a few more specific to this medium.


(i) Exposures – Long length of exposure to an ad is one major advantage of indoor transit forms. An individual rides at an average 45-50 minutes allowing him a plenty of exposure. While in the car or airplane he is a captive for that time and can see or read the ad more than once. Another form of exposure transit advertising provides is the absolute number of people exposed. A large number of people pass by the ads everyday leading to sustainable number of potential viewers.

(ii) Frequency – People who travel daily are exposed to ads repeatedly. The locations of station and shelter signs also allow high frequency of exposure.


(i) Reach – While advantage of this kind of advertising is that it provides exposure to large audience, but audience may have a certain lifestyle that are not true of the target market as a whole. In rural areas of India, mass transport is very limited or non-existent, so such a medium does not have effective reach.

(ii) Mood of Audience – Since audiences are exposed to ads very frequently while in the bus or train, sitting or standing, may not enjoy reading all about the ads. This less than positive feeling for the ad may not lead to an effective reach to them. When a person is hurrying through an airport counter, he or she may not be even noticing the ads put up due to the anxiety of boarding the aircraft on time.

Speciality Advertising or Promotional Marketing:

Promotional product marketing is the more up-to-date name for what used to be called speciality marketing. It is a medium of advertising, sales promotion, motivational communication employing imprinted, useful or decorative products called advertising specialties, a subset of promotional products, speciality advertising is both a promotion and advertising. The specialties are articles distributed free. The recipients do not have to earn speciality by making a purchase or contribution. Pen, coffee mugs, rings, calendars, T-shirts, etc., are given as gifts to promote the products.

Advantage of Promotional Product Marketing:

i. Selectivity – Speciality items are directly given to the target customers, the medium offers a high degree of selectivity. The communication is distributed to the desired recipient, reducing waste coverage.

ii. Flexibility – This medium offers high degree of flexibility. A message as simple as a logo or as long as is necessary can be distributed to customers through a number of means. A number of companies big and small can employ this medium for various objectives according to their creativity.

iii. Frequency – Speciality ads are designed for retention. Keys, calendars and pens etc., remain with customers for long time providing repeat exposures to the advertising message at no additional cost.

iv. Cost – These items are expensive but most affordable to almost any size of organization. While they are costly in CPM if you compare them with other media, the high number of repeat exposures drive down the relative cost of this advertising medium.

v. Goodwill – Promotional products are perhaps the only medium that generate goodwill in the receiver. This is because people like to receive gifts and many of their products are functional like mugs and keys, consumers are grateful to company for gifting them these gifts. This leads to favourable impression of the audience. Specialties also lead to high recall of both the advertiser name and message.

Supplementary Other Media:

Promotional products for advertising supplement in other medias. Due to repeat exposure, the messages are reinforced leading to other forms of communication getting a cushion from this media.

Disadvantages of Promotion Products Marketing:

(i) Image with the Product – Mostly speciality advertising is received as friendly reminder of the store or company name, but the firm must be careful in choosing the speciality gift. The image may be hampered, if the speciality product is poorly designed or is too cheap

(ii) Saturation – With so many organizations using the advertising medium, the market place may become saturated. The value of a ball may be reduced if getting it again is very easy and the likelihood that you will retain the item or even notice the message is reduced. The more unusual the speciality, the more the value it has for receiver.

(iii) Lead Time – Lead time required to put together the promotional products message is significantly longer than that for most other media. In spite of these advantages, promotional marketing cannot be ignored as a medium of advertisement.

Types of Advertising Media – Display or Indoor Publicity, Outdoor or Mural Advertising, Press Advertising, Radio Advertising, Television Advertising and a Few Other Types

1. Display or Indoor Publicity:

The advertisers display the goods to the people. It attracts the people to enter the shop to buy goods. It is a device by which customers and people are attracted to the shop.


i. It is more realistic in salesmanship.

ii. It is an important dealer aid.

iii. It helps the dealers to conduct an effective publicity.

iv. It is simple to make.

v. It is durable.

vi. It is cost effective

vii. It attracts the attention of the prospects and makes the people walk into the shops.

Different Forms of Displays:

(i) Window Display – The advertiser display goods in the window of the shop. Window of a shop means a part of the front portion of the shop which can be seen from outside. It is used by retailers or small businessman.

(ii) Exhibitions – The idea behind exhibitions is to induce various traders, manufacturers etc. to visit and get information about the products displayed. They are meant for introducing new products or latest innovations in the fields of business. They are organised by Trade Associations of Chamber of Commerce. In exhibition there is only presentation of the products and no sale takes place. It has mass approach as many people visit them.

(iii) Interior Decoration – It refers to the various designs and equipment’s used by a retailer inside the shop. It creates a pleasant atmosphere for the prospects and increases their comforts. Effective interior decoration does not require lot of space.

(iv) Counter Display – It refers to arranging the products located within the shop. It helps the customer to know all the items available in the shop. It counter display must bring out as many varieties as are related to the particular type displayed at the window. Thirdly, the salesman must see that goods are not placed one upon the other.

(v) Showcases – In this type, the items are presented in a cupboard with glass front. In showcases, items of similar nature and even size should be grouped together. The showcases should contain all the items available in the shops.

(vi) Showrooms – It is used by many producers or dealers to expose goods for sale, to demonstrate the uses and the working of the articles. It is meant for presentation of technical products, sophisticated goods etc. The showrooms have persons to assist the customers during their visit to the showrooms.

2. Outdoor or Mural Advertising:

It is the oldest form of advertising. It is also called wall advertising.

Main Characteristics of Outdoor Advertising:

i. It has a comparatively longer life.

ii. It has a high coverage.

iii. It is a very powerful eye-catching media.

iv. It is flexible advertising media.

v. The slogans can be easily remembered by the prospects.

Advantages of Outdoor Advertising Media:

i. It has a wide coverage.

ii. It is capable of gaining more attention of the public

iii. It is useful for local dealers.

iv. It is more flexible.

v. It can be easily remembered.

vi. It is quite economical.

vii. It has a comparatively long life.

Disadvantages of Outdoor Advertising Media:

i. The message written under this type of advertising is very brief.

ii. The exact effect created on prospects is difficult to measure.

iii. Most of the time the audience is in motion.

Types of Outdoor Advertising:

(i) Posters – These are exhibited on a hoarding or on walls, roofs etc. It consists of pictures. The posters should be simple, attractive and capable of telling its story at a glance. The advertiser can make use of suitable and attractive colours.

(ii) Advertising Board – The advertising board are kept at certain fixed places where people frequently assemble. It includes bus stops, railway stations, crossings etc. These are like frame and fixed with a panel having specified height at main junctions and consist of lighting facility.

(iii) Vehicle Advertising – The moving advertisement is referred as vehicle advertising. It consists of placing posters or play cards inside or outside vehicles. It includes autos, buses, taxies, delivery-vans, railway carriages etc.

(iv) Electric Displays and Signs – Signs illuminated by electricity are referred as electric display. It may consist of wooden letters studded with bulbs. Sometimes with a view to attract the attention, coloured bulbs are used and the colours are changed at short intervals.

(v) Neon Signs – There are brilliantly coloured tubes available in various shades. These can be of the still or the flashing type. These signs are more attractive and interesting than the signs built up by a number of electric bulbs.

(vi) Sky Advertising – In this form of advertising media an aeroplane writes the name of the product or the producer in the sky. It is also known as smoke writing because the message is written in the sky by means of smoke. Large sized printed balloons are also dropped from the aeroplane in the sky.

3. Press Advertising:

Press is an advertising media comprising all vehicles owned by others. It can carry the advertising message in print to be read by target customers.

Press advertising takes the following two major forms:

(i) Newspapers:

In India, there are a number of newspapers in English and regional languages. Newspapers are bought largely for their news values. Newspapers may be national, local, daily or weekly. These are a good vehicle to pass on information about new products, current products and price-off deals.

The newspapers charge on the basis of column centimetre space used by the advertiser. They also charge premium for special positions and provide concession for space booking on contract. These rates vary from newspaper to newspaper as per their circular and coverage.

Advantages of Newspaper Advertising Media:

a) High coverage.

b) They offer a lot of flexibility.

c) High frequency enables speedy preparation and publication of advertisement.

d) It is the cheapest media of advertising as far as its cost per reader is concerned.

e) The public response towards newspaper advertising is very quick.

f) The effectiveness of advertising copy could be tested quite easily.

g) The reputation of the newspapers is available to the advertisers and their products.

h) It provides geographic selectivity.

Disadvantages of Newspaper Advertising Media:

a) The life of a newspaper is very short

b) There is waste of circulation.

c) Advertising in newspapers may be ineffective and costly for limited customers.

d) Difficult to create visual effects.

e) Lack of uniformity in advertising requirements.

(ii) Magazines and Journals:

They offer selective circulation throughout the country at a cost within reasonable budget limits. These are published periodically at regular intervals. They are read at leisure and with care.

From the advertiser’s point of view, magazines can be classified under five groups:

a) Special Interest Magazines.

b) Trade Magazines.

c) Technical Magazines

d) Professional Magazines.

e) Regional Magazines.

Advantages of Magazines and Journals:

(i) The life of magazine is longer than of newspapers.

(ii) Better reproduction of advertisement than newspapers is provided.

(iii) Waste of circulation is avoided.

(iv) Magazine advertising create prestige, reputation and an image of quality.

(v) The number of readers per copy in case of magazine advertising is quite high.

(vi) There is multiplicity of readership.

(vii) Magazines reach specialised groups conveniently and effectively.

(viii) The cost of utilising magazines for advertising is quite low.

Disadvantages of Magazine and Journals:

(i) The chief demerit of magazine advertising is its low flexibility.

(ii) The circulation is limited as compared to newspaper advertising.

(iii) It consumes more time in printing etc.

(iv) The size of magazines differs widely.

(v) The advertiser has to prepare the copy of advertisement according to the size of the magazine and journal.

4. Radio Advertising:

In India radio advertising was started in the year 1967. In present scenario radio advertising is extremely popular with both trade and industry. The advertiser delivers the message orally. It has emerged as one of our major advertising media. It provides a very large coverage of audience in urban and rural areas.

Advantages of Radio Advertising:

a) It is flexible.

b) It easily catches the attention of the people.

c) It is a major source of income.

d) It affords variety of programmes.

e) It has a wide coverage.

f) It can convey message even to remote areas.

Disadvantages of Radio Advertising:

a) The message is short-lived.

b) It is costly for small and medium sized advertisers.

c) It does not portray visually.

d) It is not useful for technical products.

e) It provides brief information.

f) There is no opportunity of demonstration.

5. Television Advertising:

The coverage of television is increasing at a rapid pace in India. This media is particularly advantageous for those advertisers whose products require demonstration. It has a potential advertising impact unmatched by any other media.

Advantages of Television Advertising:

a) It is a most powerful audio-visual media.

b) It makes the message more attractive and exciting.

c) It provides the provision of demonstration.

d) It possesses geographical selectivity.

e) It has a wide coverage.

f) It has provided global recognition to business.

g) It has facilitated global publicity of domestic goods.

h) It is very popular among the masses.

i) It provides 24 hours of service.

j) It provides a variety of programmes.

Disadvantages of Television Advertising:

a) It is very costly.

b) Television message is short-lived.

c) Television advertisements are very brief.

d) It requires long term planning.

e) It lacks flexibility. It needs technical staff.

f) High manpower cost.

g) It is difficulty is to assess consumers want.

h) It is difficult to know attitude and preferences of target audience.

6. Internet Advertising:

The internet advertising has bought the revolution. The advertising on the internet can take a variety of forms.

Internet advertising can be classified as:

(i) Websites – It consists of a home page and an indefinite number of subsequent pages that users can visit for further information. It is locations where various stakeholders come to find out more about the company, its products and services such as customers, prospects, shareholders, investor’s etc. The companies use their website to promote their goods and services.

(ii) Banners – A banner is a little billboard that spreads across the top or bottom of the Web page. It is the basic form of web advertising. At present one comes across larger banner ads that can dominate the screen or even provide television commercials. When users click their mouse pointer on the banner, it sends them to the advertiser’s site or a buffer page.

(iii) Interstitials – This is a dynamic form of Net advertising. It is a catch all term for a variety of animated ads that pop up on the screen while the computer downloads a website that the user has clicked on. There are now many types of interstitials including pop-up windows, splash screens etc.

(iv) E-Mail – It is similar to direct mail advertising. It is the most effective form of internet advertising. The unsolicited mass e-mail advertising for product or service that is sent by an unknown entity to e-mail addresses is called Spam.

Advantage of Internet Advertising:

a) It allows consumers to directly interact with an advertiser.

b) It enhances customer relationship.

c) It provides the information and commercial opportunities that are accessible around the globe.

d) It provides immediate consumer response.

e) It enables to reach the affluent market of the society.

f) It provides vital information about company products.

Disadvantages of Internet Advertising:

a) It lacks mass-media efficiency.

b) The advertisings that pop up in-between irritate the Internet users.

c) There is too much of spam via the e-mail. The users do not consider going through even the responsible advertisings.

d) Most people do not believe the internet as a safe place of online purchases.

e) Testing the effectiveness of Internet advertising is difficult.

7. Sponsored Advertising Films:

It is a very good combination of advertisement and entertainment. Cartoon films come under this category. In India, cinema has practically reached in all the parts of the country. It helps those companies which are need to penetrate the rural market of our country. For example – consumer-products and farm inputs.


a) It has a quite wide coverage.

b) It able to explain and demonstrate the use of a product quite conveniently.

c) Appeal is made to all sections of the society.

d) It attracts the attention of advertisement.

e) It is effective.


a) The films are too short.

b) Advertiser need to make changes frequently.

c) Production cost is high.

d) The audience may avoid watching such films repeatedly.

e) Restrictions are imposed against screening of films.

8. Point of Purchase Advertising:

The advertising which is undertaken at the premises of the manufacturer or the dealer for attracting the customers is called Purchase point advertising. It is the exact point where the prospects are reminded finally about a product. It is a direct method undertaken by the manufacturer or through the dealer. Under this method, goods are displayed at the counters and windows.


a) It helps to attract the customer during purchase.

b) It influences the buyer decision making process.

c) It results in enhance sales.

d) It helps in motivating the customers to do more purchase.


a) Need to change the offer regularly.

b) Often rearrange the display is required to keep it interesting.