Cartoons are an effective device for advertising because they are colorful and popular. Since they are entertaining they tend to leave prospects in a happy, receptive mood. Here are some ideas on how you can effectively use cartoons for your ad campaigns.
Newspaper advertising – Years ago when I started out as a cartoonist I read a survey which revealed that, among newspaper readers, 91 percent read the comics whereas only 65 percent read the sports and 27 percent read the news. This was years ago and the statistics may have changed somewhat but it does reveal how popular cartoons are for newspaper readers. Considering this an advertiser might do well to create a series of ads in a cartoon format. Years ago, for example, one of the loan companies in my home town came up with a cartoon series called “The Loan Arranger”, a takeoff on the popular comic character, The Lone Ranger. It was a single panel cartoon that appeared frequently and each episode promoted the services of this loan company. Newspapers carry so many ads, this is one way for an advertiser to make sure his ad stands out in the crowd.
Direct mail advertising – I recently received a direct mail ad from the publishers of the Saturday Evening Post. The ad was to promote new subscriptions to their magazine. On the outside of the envelope they published a cartoon, much like the ones you see in their magazine. I often throw my junk mail away without even opening it, but the cartoon enticed me to open the envelope and read the advertising. Other advertisers could do the same thing to entice more attention to their direct mail pieces. A cartoon on a flyer handout would also be an effective way of getting people to read the flyers.
Store displays – I remember reading some time back about a shoe store owner who had cartoons blown up and displayed them in his store window nestled between the shoes he had on display. People would stop and look at the cartoons in the window, and then notice the shoes that were on sale. Here again is a creative way of using cartoons to attract attention to an advertising message.
These are just some of the advertising tricks I’ve seen used during my 40 years as a cartoonist. Next time you start to plan your ad campaigns, you may want to consider this type of art in your planning. Cartoons are generally no more expensive than any other type of photos or artwork you may choose and there are many cartoonists who will create custom work for you and you can find them with a quick search on the internet. Or, if you want to save money, you can often license cartoons from a cartoonist’s stock inventory, which will fit nicely into your advertising message. Either way you have a fun and effective device for getting your message to prospective buyers.