advertising + entertainment
Today begins the Blogging from A to Z April Challenge, and I’d like to welcome all of you who are new to The Sound of One Hand Typing (AM and FM). My theme this year is portmanteau words, words that take portions of two or more words and mash them together to form a brand-new word.
Our first portmanteau is advertainment, defined as “A form of communication that combines the elements of advertising and entertainment,” according to Wordnik. There’s always been a certain element of enertainment in commercials, everything from marching and dancing cigarettes to cleansing powder advertised by barbershop-singing elves, from instant coffee to hamburger joints, from automobiles to cellular telephone service. There’s no doubt that these are commercials, but there’s an element of entertainment that keeps you watching.
Millions of dollars are spent yearly in the US for commercials that air during the Super Bowl, the end-of-year extravaganza staged by the National Football League to determine the best team in the league. Some of those commercials aren’t commercials per se. For example, Chrysler aired a commercial during the 2013 game that featured radio icon Paul Harvey talking about farmers…
That same year, Budweiser aired this commercial, featuring one of its Clydesdales…
Advertainment has been criticized as another form of subliminal advertising, using the commercials to send a subliminal message to purchase a product or service. That’s probably true. At the same time, the commercials are entertaining, often better than the shows themselves.
What are some ad campaigns that you would consider “advertainment”? Which ones do you like? Which ones have caused you to purchase a product or service? I know many of you are from outside North America, and I’d be interested to know about the ad campaigns there.