Monday, October 28, 2013

Monday Morning Coffee: Mediums / Messages

If you have been following along for a bit, then you know that there have been many images of various kinds of signage.  Often on painted on brick walls or roads while others are on store fronts and/or in windows.

What with this signage?  A couple of definitions to get us started.

Marketing is the process of communicating the value of a product or service to customers, for the purpose of selling that product or service.

Advertising is a form of marketing communication to encourage, persuade, or to continue to take some action.
Let’s take a quick and short trip thru time.
Early and traditional – at least here in the Midwest – simple and direct messages painted on buildings usually advertising local opportunities.

Later permanent and/or temporary message boards began appearing.  These could be replaced and updated as different products became available.
 Today, in addition to the traditional wall paintings and message boards, we are seeing a different bit of signage - graffiti. 
What is the graffiti message?  Sometimes it is advertising – stop war, don’t support ______, support ______. 
Other times it is marketing, communicating the value of a product to customers and this is where the message is often a bit different and misunderstood.

The product has become the graffiti maker and the customer is the viewer.  No need to purchase something, just value the product - the maker.

Social  networking has given the ability to communicate quickly to a worldwide audience.  A photograph has become an virtual object with a short half-life.  Food/meals, shopping, walking down a street, happy hours with friends are just a few examples.  Posters are openly sharing their personal everyday lives.  Many of these shared moments include a self portrait - a selfie - I am alive and here.  

Painted messages on walls, message boards and graffiti are/have moved to social networks.  Quickly viewed, often not really seen, and with a short half-life - soon forgotten.

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