Answer 1. Classification and Types of Advertising Media:

Advertising media are the means to transmit the message from the advertiser to the particular class of people.

A marketer can select any one or more of the following media of advertisement to promote his sales:

1. Press Advertising or Print Media:

Press advertising i.e., advertising through newspapers, magazines, journals, etc. is commonly used by modern businessmen. It may be noted that advertising is an important source of finance for the press or print media. Because of advertisements, the subscribers get newspapers and periodicals at subsidised rates.

(a) Newspaper Advertising:

Newspaper reading is a common habit among the educated people. Besides daily newspapers, there are bi-weekly and weekly newspapers also. Newspapers reach almost every place and are read by all kinds of people. Therefore, newspaper can be used as a medium of advertisement with great advantage.

While selecting a newspaper for this purpose, an advertiser has to take into consideration the strength of circulation, the class of readers it serves, the geographical region over which it is popular and the cost of space.

Advertising through newspapers has the following merits:

(i) A newspaper has large circulation and a single advertisement in a newspaper can reach a large number of people.

(ii) Continuous advertisement is possible because newspaper is published daily. An advertiser can repeat his advertisement either daily or as required by him.

(iii) Newspapers provide flexibility in advertising in the sense that advertisement campaign can be initiated and stopped quickly. One day’s notice is sufficient for this purpose. Similarly, advertisement message can be changed promptly when desired.

(iv) Advertisements are the major source of income to the newspapers. This helps in selling the newspapers at reduced prices to the readers.

The limitations of newspaper advertising are as follows:

(i) The life of a newspaper advertisement is very short. Moreover, people devote only an insignificant part of their days’ time in reading the newspaper. Thus, advertisements are likely to draw the reader’s attention only casually.

(ii) Newspaper advertisement is successful only when the people to be communicated are educated.

(iii) Newspaper cannot be used for high class coloured advertisements. The advertisements are generally printed in black and white. Because of this, they may fail to help the customer identifying the products at the point of purchase.

(b) Magazine Advertising:

Magazines or periodicals are an excellent medium of advertisement when a high quality of printing and colour is desired in an advertisement. Magazine advertisements can be directed towards a particular class of people and thus they avoid wasteful expenditure on advertising. Many specialised magazines or journals are published which can be used for transmitting the message to the specific class of customers.

Magazine advertising is considered to be superior to newspaper advertising because of the following merits:

(i) Magazines are read more carefully and at greater leisure. Advertising through magazines is more effective.

(ii) The life of the magazine advertisement is longer. Magazines are preserved for a long period of time and are read time and again.

(iii) Since advertisement copy is presented in a coloured form, it creates a better image of the product advertised. Exact picture can be portrayed to enable the customer to identify the product at the point of purchase.

Magazine advertising has the following limitations:

(i) Advertising through magazines is very costly.

(ii) The circulation of magazines is very small as compared to the newspapers.

(iii) Magazine advertisements are to be prepared and sent for publication well in advance. It is not possible to make the last minute change in the advertisement copy.

2. Radio Advertising:

Radio advertisements have gained great popularity these days. Advertisements are broadcast from the transmitting stations of the commercial service of All India Radio and picked up by the receiving sets owned by the public. Radio advertisements or commercials are normally broadcast along with popular programmes of music. Even the sponsored programmes of interviews and plays can also be broadcast over the radio.

Advantages of Radio Advertising:

I. Scope for Mental Imagery:

Radio advertising depends solely on the spoken words. The listener does not require same amount of attention and effort as required by other media and can hear the messages while doing other things. Human voice is the only communication mode. In case of effective message delivery, the listener develops a mental imagery of the programme or the store or setting and gets involved in the situation. Such mental imagery can be much more effective than any actual setting and performance.

II. Low Cost Medium:

Radio is a low cost advertising medium. It requires only a script or a copy of pre-coded message and an announcer to read the message. Also, the cost of airtime on radio is very low. Because of the low cost of developing commercials, the absolute cost of radio advertising is very low and when it is the case of wide audience reach radio is one of the most cost efficient ways to carry advertising message to target audience.

The wide audience reach is due to the fact that radio has easy accessibility across various social classes, across various times of the day, across various demographic groups, and across various geographic locations. For its low absolute cost radio advertising suits the small budget advertisers. Relatively, the lower radio advertising cost makes it one of the most efficient of all the advertising media.

III. Selectivity and Flexibility:

Radio advertising also offers selectivity and flexibility. Selectivity is available through the various programme formats and geographic coverage of numerous stations. The advertiser can vary the messages and the intensity of coverage of different markets to meet local conditions.

One can also obtain selectivity in terms of types of listenership by making a proper selection of programmes, time of the day, and stations. In today’s scenario when mass marketing gives way to market segmentation and regional marketing, radio is gaining more and more importance to reach out to the most difficult audience.

Concerning flexibility, radio provides an opportunity to run as many commercials as one finds suitable to the product communication needs. Radio is timely in the sense that it allows for immediate broadcast of news, events or special occurrences as soon as they happen.

The same is possible with special announcements and product promotions concerning the product. Thus, due to a large listener base, selectivity, flexibility and low cost, radio has gained momentum as an advertising medium and marketers plan judiciously for radio advertising as a tool of integrated marketing communication. Radio provides a number of integrated communication opportunities such as to promote point of purchase promotions, or to promote event marketing.

There are certainly some disadvantages of using radio as advertising medium and the media planner use it carefully while planning for product promotions.

Disadvantages of Radio:

a. Perishable:

Radio has some real weaknesses as an advertising medium. Like television, radio advertising is of a perishable nature. If the listener is not available at the time of broadcast, the message is gone forever. The message requires repetition which adds to the cost and level of noise in the environment.

b. Lesser Attention:

Even though the listener is available at the time of broadcast, there may further be the problem of retaining his/her attention to the commercial. Most people do not get actively involved or attentive in listening to the radio programmes, as most often they provide the background to some other activity. Otherwise also when people are listening to the music, they may not actually grasp the content of the advertising message delivered between musical numbers.

c. Absence of Visual Image:

This is another significant point of disadvantage of radio advertising. Radio advertiser cannot illustrate the product, demonstrate the product, or use any kind of visual appeal or information to attract viewer’s attention. The fleeting nature of radio messages and lack of control on the receiver’s part to process the information further restrict the scope of creativity in radio advertising. Advertisers, therefore, usually combine radio as a secondary medium to work out media plan for the product.

d. Audience Fragmentation:

The rise in the number of radio stations has led to audience fragmentation and so the number of audience tuned to particular station tends to be small. This directly implies that in order to reach larger audience base, advertisers need to buy airtime on a number of stations to provide the required coverage in a target market.

e. Cluttered Environment:

As with other media, radio also faces the problem of clutter. There are two aspects of clutter problem in radio advertising. One is the increased number of brands using radio advertising to carry the message deeper and wider in the market. Secondly, the very nature of radio advertising requires repetitions which further add to the clutter in radio environment. As a consequence, advertiser needs to be more creative and should adopt more repetitions as a way to break away from clutter.

Both radio and television are the dominant forms of broadcast media which advertisers explore to the best of their use. The role for each one is defined in carrying brand communications. Interactive media is the new form of broadcast media which has seen its growth over the last few years. The emergence of interactive media has enormously changed the face of advertising.

3. Film Advertising:

Films are an important medium of advertisement. Business concerns usually get a short motion picture prepared and distribute it to different cinema houses for displaying it before the commencement of the regular shows or during the period of intermission.

Such films are accompanied by running commentary to explain the features, uses and superiority of the product. But film advertisement can be adopted only by the well established firms. Since it involves high cost, small business firms can get cinema slide prepared for display in the cinema halls.

Film advertisement is very effective since it combines spoken words and visual presentation of pictures. It also helps in selective advertisement. A trader can advertise his product only in a particular locality if he wants to attract the local customers.

The major drawback of film advertisement is that it is usually ignored by the people. Only a few persons are present in the hall before the start of the film and during the interval, and they too are busy in talking.

The merits of film advertising are as under:

(i) Film advertisement is very effective since it combines spoken words and visual presentation of picture.

(ii) It helps in selective advertisement. A trader can advertise his products in the areas from where he wants to attract the customers.

The demerits of film advertising are as under:

(i) It is usually ignored by people when they are busy in talking.

(ii) Its effectiveness is limited as only a few people are present in the hall before the start of the feature film and during the interval.

4. Television Advertising:

Television is the fast growing medium of advertisement because of huge expansion of electronic media and cable network. It makes its appeal through both the eye and the ear. Products can be demonstrated as well as explained as in film advertisement. Advertising may take the form of short commercials and sponsored programmes.

T.V. advertising has all the merits of film advertising. It has greater effectiveness as the message is conveyed at their homes to the people. Selectivity of message can also be achieved. Commercials may be given during that time period when the prospective buyers are supposed to watch television programmes.

T.V. advertising has got all the demerits of film advertising. Television is a very costly medium of advertisement and can be made use of by the well established companies only. Another limitation of television advertisement is that once it is presented, its back reference is not possible.

Advantages of Using Television as an Advertising Medium:

a. Audio-Visual Medium:

Televisions as advertising medium makes full use of both sight and sound and offers tremendous creative flexibility and makes possible dramatic life like representation of products and services. Television commercials can be used to attract the attention and interest of the potential customer through the creative use of both sight and sound in combination.

b. Enhanced Memorability:

Television permits the demonstration of the product and can discuss and explain the use of the product, its features and advantages. Television commercial gives the sense of actual product use, the nearest thing to the product experience. The use of colours in commercials further adds to the commercial effectiveness and its memorability.

c. Mass Reach:

Another advantage of television advertising which emerges due to the popularity of the medium itself is its ability to reach masses. Over the years television has truly emerged as a mass medium where everyone regardless of age, sex, income or social class watches at least some amount of television programmes and shows. There are a large number of people who watch television on a regular basis.

Marketers selling products of mass consumption find television as the most suitable medium offering low cost exposure to target audiences. With widespread distribution and availability of products and services, television commercials, thus, become indispensable form of product promotion for companies dealing in packaged goods, retailing, and so on.

d. Selectivity and Flexibility:

Television has an advantage of being relatively selective and flexible in several ways. The selectivity occurs due to its programme content, broadcast time and geographic coverage which bring variation in the composition of target audience.

Thus, advertisers gain relatively selective type of audience and are able to evolve appropriate media strategies. Advertisers adjust their media strategies according to local market conditions such as to take advantage of some special occasion, or to use different appeals in different markets. Such flexibility in the use of this medium becomes possible due to the availability of various transmission arrangements, including local or spot advertising.

e. Non-Competing Environment:

Unlike print medium, television medium provides advertising exposure in a non-competitive environment. The advertising message on television appears by itself, and there are no competitive advertisements or even editorial matter to distract the viewer from the message.

Also, there are no limitations on the size of the advertisement and each advertisement is seen full screen. Television is considered as a personal medium as it involves the use of human voice, for which many a time it is considered to be more effective medium than the print.

Despite its creativity and capabilities to generate excitement and interest, television as an advertising medium carries certain disadvantages or problems which put a limitation on its use for advertising purpose. High cost, fleeting exposures, and clutter are some of the disadvantages of using television for advertising purposes.

Disadvantages of Using Television as an Advertising Medium:

a. High Absolute Cost:

The high absolute cost of buying airtime on television along with the cost of producing high quality commercials is the prime deterring factor in the general use of television as the advertising medium. Many small advertisers with small advertising budgets either find themselves incapable of buying airtime, or else they need to be brief in their message content.

b. Unfit to Small Target Size:

Though some selectivity is possible in television advertising due to variation in programme content or geographic area or particular air timing, yet television does not allow reaching to very specific and often small target size. The cost per exposure to target audience in such cases becomes higher due to much of the wastage exposure. Television, therefore, looses its importance in comparison to other media types such as magazine or radio as they are capable of providing more precise reach in the target market at much lesser cost.

c. Fleeting Exposures:

The advertising message on television lasts only as long as it is being presented on the screen and if the prospect is not viewing or listening at that very moment when the exposure occurs, the message is gone forever and wasted so far as that prospect is concerned.

This is called fleeting nature of television advertising. Advertisers, therefore, opt for message repetition and buy an additional airtime. But, to keep the advertising cost in line, advertisers at times decide about shorter commercials, which they believe would be as effective as the longer commercials could be.

d. Cluttered Environment:

This is another problem with television advertising as advertiser’s message is just one of the many spots being aired during the commercial break. Due to a cluttered environment television advertising tends to loose its effectiveness. Advertisers, therefore, need to be more tactical in their use of media time to enhance the attention value of advertised message.

e. Ad Avoidance:

Advertising messages are most often ignored by the viewing audience, who either leave the room on some pretext or get distracted in some other way during the commercial break. Zipping and zapping are the two greater challenges that have emerged over the last few years only. Zipping occurs when customers fast forward through commercials as they play back a previously recorded programme.

Zapping involves changing television channels to avoid commercials. With remote control facilitating easy channel switch, zapping has become a more regular phenomenon. So, to inhibit zapping and to hold viewers’ attention, advertisers tend to become more creative in their approach as well as in ad executions.

f. Lack of Accurate Audience Assessment:

Accurate assessment of audience size is another major problem with television advertising. Not only that the size of audience is difficult to compute, but it is also subject to errors in measurement. Households owning television, households using television, households tuned to the programme carrying advertising message and the prospect actually viewing the ad are the various accuracy levels of television audience measurement. Depending upon the access to measurement technique, the accurate measurement of the size of television audience remains elusive to some extent.

5. Direct Mail Advertising:

Direct mail is probably the most selective of all the advertising media. It is used to send the message directly to the customer. For this purpose, the advertiser has to maintain a mail list which can be expanded or contracted by adding or removing names from the list. But a severe limitation is posed by the difficulty of getting and maintaining a good mailing list.

Advertisements that are sent by direct mail may be in the form of circular letters, leaflet folders, calenders, booklets and catalogues. Circular letters are sent to the prospective customers to inform them about the merits of the product and to create their interest in the product.

Booklets and catalogues contain the information about the products advertised. Information about the terms of sale and prices of different varieties of the product is given to the prospective customers through catalogues.

The merits of direct mail advertising are as under:

(i) Mail advertising has a personal appeal since it is addressed to a particular person.

(ii) It maintains secrecy in advertising. The competitors do not get the information about the advertised material.

(iii) It gives flexibility in advertising. The message can be changed whenever the need arises. The mailing list can also be revised whenever the need arises.

(iv) It gives an opportunity to the advertiser to provide detailed and illustrated information about the product to the prospects.

(v) It is the most selective medium of advertisement. The advertiser saves money also by directing his advertisement to the selected people.

The demerits of direct mail advertising are given below:

(i) The coverage of direct mail advertisement is limited.

(ii) It is not possible to get the names and addresses of all the prospects when the advertisement material should be sent by mail.

(iii) Its effectiveness is doubt fid as it does not create a mass appeal.

6. Window Display:

Window display is an on sight method of advertising. Goods can be exhibited in artistically laid out windows at the shop fronts or at important busy centres like railway stations and bus stops. Large show rooms are organised by big manufacturers and wholesalers in the main markets to advertise their products and attend to the queries of the prospective customers.

The retailers also organise attractive display of goods in the windows of their shops. Window displays are very popular with the retailers since it helps in informing the customers about the types of goods available with them.

The main objective of window display is to draw the attention of the public and arouse their interest in the products displayed. Almost all the manufacturers insist that their products should be displayed at the retail shops. If a product is displayed properly at the point-of-purchase (POP) by the customers, it can attract many customers.

Many people having no preference for a particular brand may discover a particular brand quite appealing and attractive and may purchase it. Thus, window display creates the demand for the product. Window display acts as silent salesman.

In order to achieve the purpose of window display, cleanliness and a well-furnished appearance for the window are essential. Articles should be arranged in a systematic way and if possible price tags should also be attached with the articles. It is better if window displays are changed regularly to make the customers look at the displays every time they visit the shop.

Media of Advertisement:

(i) Press Advertising:

(a) Window Display Advertising.

(b) Newspapers

(ii) Radio Advertising

(iii) Film Advertising

(iv) Television Advertising

(v) Direct Mail Advertising

(vi) Window Display

(vii) Outdoor Advertising

(viii) Internet Advertising.

7. Outdoor Advertising:

Outdoor advertising has gained wide popularity these days. Its purpose is to attract the attention of the people at busy roads and markets. It includes the use of poster displays, bill board displays, and electric or electronic displays.

a. Poster Displays:

Posters are fixed on walls of buildings, bridges, and other public places. It is also quite common to write slogans and other message about the products in bold letters on the walls to attract the attention of the people even from a long distance. That is why, it is also known as ‘Mural Advertising’. Mural advertising is frequently used to advertise fans, fertilizers, tonics, beauty aids and other consumer items.

b. Bill Board Displays:

Painted or bill board displays involve the advertisements directly painted on the boards meant for this purpose. They are quite big in size and are fixed at outstanding locations like busy markets and crossings. They are also erected on tops of bridges and important buildings.

c. Electrical Displays:

Electrical display involves the use of electric Electronic lights or neon tubes to attract the attention of people, particularly during night. Generally, a short message is illuminated in tubes of different colours so that it is conspicuous and attractive. Electrical displays are fixed at navy traffic consumer centres.

d. Vehicular Displays:

It has become a fashion these days to use modes of public transport for advertising. The space outside and inside the buses, railway carriages and other vans may be hired by the businessmen to spread their messages. Vehicles give mobility to the message.

Outdoor advertising has the following merits:

(i) Outdoor advertising is highly flexible and is a low cost medium.

(ii) It is very useful for advertising consumer products because posters, etc. can be displayed at various crowded centres.

(iii) Outdoor advertisement attracts quick attention and requires very less time and effort on the part of the readers. A complete picture of the product can be shown through outdoor displays.

Outdoor advertising is criticised on the following grounds:

(i) It can’t carry long messages as posters, hoardings, etc. are ready by the people at a glance.

(ii) It has a low retention value because people don’t devote special time to read the message.

(iii) It distracts the attention of the passersby and may even cause accidents on busy roads.

8. Internet Advertising:

It is the most recent advertising medium which makes use of internet to disseminate the message. It is an interactive medium and can deliver message more effectively.

The advantages of internet advertising are as follows:

(i) It is not very expensive.

(ii) Dramatisation of message is possible.

(iii) It is an interactive media where two-way communication is pos­sible.

The drawbacks of internet advertising are as follows:

(i) It has limited reach.

(ii) Being a new medium, its effectiveness is yet to be established.

Media for Advertising

Media has a vital role in the process of advertising communication. Effective advertising is possible only if suitable media are available. The various types of media for advertising are: 1. Print Media 2. Electronic Media 3. Other Media.


Type # 1. Print Media:

Print media however, is one of the oldest forms of advertising methods. Print media also remains to be one of the most popular forms of advertising because it can reach a wider target audience. There are various different types of print media, which help advertisers to target a particular segment of people.

These are:

i. Newspapers.

ii. Magazines.

iii. Newsletters.

iv. Brochures.

i. Newspapers:

Newspapers are the most popular forms of print media. In our country newspapers are published in English, Hindi and in other regional languages. These are the sources of news, opinions and current events. The advertiser communicates his message through newspaper, which reaches to crores of people.


a. Newspapers normally have wide circulation and a single advertisement in the newspaper can quickly reach to a large number of people.

b. The cost of advertising is relatively low.

c. Generally newspapers are published daily. Thus, the same advertisement can be repeated frequently and remind reader every day.

d. The matter of advertisement can be given to newspapers at a very short notice.

e. Newspapers are published from different regions and in different lan­guages. Hence, they provide greater choice to advertisers to approach the desired market, region and readers through local or regional language.


a. Newspapers have a short life as these are read once and discarded.

b. People read newspapers mainly for news and pay casual attention to advertisement.

c. Illiterate persons cannot read and thus, newspapers advertising do not benefit them.

d. Competitors can quickly react to the prices after seeing the newspapers.

ii. Periodicals:

Periodicals are publications which come out regularly but not on a daily basis. These may be published on a weekly, fortnightly, monthly, bimonthly, quarterly or even yearly basis. For example, India Today, Frontline, Outlook, Femina, etc. published regularly in English and Grihasobha, Nandan and Champak in Hindi. Similarly there are also periodicals in Hindi and other regional languages. All these periodicals have a large number of readers and thus, advertisements published in them reach a number of people.


a. Periodicals have a much longer life than newspapers. These are preserved for a long period to be referred in future.

b. Periodicals have a selected readership and so advertisers can know about their target customers and accordingly selective advertisements are given.


a. Advertising in periodicals is costlier.

b. Numbers of people to whom the advertisements reach are small in comparison to newspapers.

c. The advertisement materials are given much in advance; hence last minute change is riot possible. This reduces flexibility.

iii. Brochures:

Brochures give detailed information about the product. These are mainly distributed at events or even at the main outlet when a consumer needs to read in detail about the product.

Type # 2. Electronic Media:

This is a very popular form of advertising in the modern day marketing.

The various types of electronic media are:

i. Television.

ii. Radio.

iii. Internet.

iv. Cinema.

i. Television:

With rapid growth of information technology and electronic media, television has topped the list among the media of advertising. TV has the most effective impact as it appeals to both eye and the ear. Products can be shown, their uses can be demonstrated and their utilities can be told over television. Advertisements are shown in TV during short breaks.


a. It is most effective as it has an audio-visual impact.

b. With catchy slogans, song and dance sequences, famous personalities exhibiting products, TV advertising has a lasting impact.

For example, who can forget Aamir Khan saying “Thanda Matlab Cocacola” or Sachin Tendulkar in Pepsi advertisement.

c. With varieties of channels and programs advertisers have a lot of choice to select the channel and time to advertise.

d. With regional channels coming up any person even illiterates can watch the advertisements and understood it by seeing and hearing.


a. TV advertisements are usually expensive to prepare as well as to telecast,

b. With almost every manufacturer trying to communicate their message through TV advertising the impact among the viewers is also reducing. Now-a-days people are switching on channels whenever there is a commercial break.

ii. Radio:

Radio advertising is the strongest medium of advertising. Everybody listens to the radio. Some use it on home all day and the others use it while driving. More and more companies are choosing radio advertising because it is cost effective. In radio there are short breaks during transmission of any programme which is filled by advertisements of products and services.


a. It is more effective as people hear it on a regular basis.

b. It is also useful to illiterate people.

c. There are places where newspapers reading may not be possible, but one can hear radio.


a. A regular listener may remember what he has heard. But, occasional listeners tend to forget what they have heard in radio.

b. The message that any advertisement wants to communicate may not be proper as there is no chance to hear it again immediately.

c. In comparison to television, radio is less effective as it lacks visual impact.

iii. Internet:

Internet is the latest method of communication and gathering information. With the help of internet one can have information from all over the world within a fraction of second. One can go to the website of any manufacturer or service provider and gather information.

There are also search engines or portals available when website addresses are not available. In almost all the search engines or portals different manufactures or service providers advertise their products. These days more and more companies are focusing on advertising through internet.


a. Information from all over the world is made available at the doorsteps.

b. Users can see the advertisement at their own time and as per their require­ment.


a. It is not accessible without a computer.

b. It is not very suitable for general public.

c. It is not suitable for illiterate people

iv. Cinema:

Cinema also plays an important role in advertising. Small films are prepared for advertising the various products. These pictures are played before the start of the picture and during the intervals.

Type # 3. Other Media:

All the media of advertising discussed above are mostly used by customers while they are at home or inside any room. However, there are other media available, where the customers have to spend nothing and they can see such advertisements while moving outside.

Some of such modes of advertising are:

i. Hoardings.

ii. Posters.

iii. Vehicular displays.

iv. Gift items from manufacturer.

i. Hoardings:

While moving on roads, one must have seen large hoardings placed on iron frames or rooftops or walls. These are normally boards on which advertisements are painted or electronically designed so that they are visible during day or night. The advertisers have to pay an amount to the owners of the space, where the hoardings are placed.

ii. Posters:

Poster are printed and posted on walls, buildings, bridges etc. to attract the attention of customers.

iii. Vehicular Displays:

One must have seen advertisements on the public transport like buses, trains, etc. Unlike hoardings these vehicles give mobility to advertisements and cover a large number of people.

iv. Gift Items from Manufacturers:

When a customer buys something, shopkeeper gives him/her a certain gift e.g., on buying a cycle, the shopkeeper sometimes gives you a key ring to hold the cycle key, some jewellers give small purse or boxes on buying jewellery. Sometimes manufacturers give diaries, calendars, purse, etc. to buyers and prospective customers.

In all these items the name, address and telephone number of the manufacturer, or trader or service provider as well as descriptions of the products in which they deal in are printed. These items are normally items of daily use given freely to the customers. While using, the user remembers the products as well as the producer.

Classification of Advertising Media

A ‘medium’ is the carrier of the advertising message. It is a means to deliver the advertising message. Each advertiser wants to go for the right mes­sage carrier keeping in minds the cost, efficiency and specialities of the media or medium. Every advertiser has good many media for his selection.

Broadly these can be classified as:

I. Indoor Media:

Indoor advertising includes all those advertising media vehicles which deliver the advertisers message right in the home of the audience. These vehicles are – Newspapers; magazines; radio; television and film.

(a) Newspapers:

Newspaper is the only source which is read by most of the houses, within their area of circulation. It is considered as an excellent medium for those advertisers who desire to reach the general public quickly. Newspaper may be national/local/daily/weekly.

These are a good vehicle to pass on information about new products, current products and price off deals. In India, there are a number of newspapers both in English and also in regional languages. Many newspapers in English and Hindi have national wide coverage. So a message given in these newspapers may have a better impression in the minds of the people.

Advantages of Newspaper Advertising Media:

(1) The coverage of newspapers is high as they reach to every nook and corner in very short time.

(2) It is cheapest media of advertising as far as the cost per reader is concerned.

(3) They offer a lot of flexibility. The advertiser can change the shape, size and appeal of advertisement to suit his needs.

(4) The response of public towards newspaper advertising is very quick.

(5) The newspaper has strong repetitive value as it offers an opportunity to the advertiser to repeat his message at a short interval of only one day.

Disadvantages of Newspaper Advertising Media:

(1) The life of newspaper is very short.

(2) If the number of customer is limited, advertising in newspaper may be ineffective and costly too.

(3) This media is not suitable if the potential customers are illiterate.

(4) Visual effects may not be created in practice as the newspapers are generally printed on cheap papers.

(b) Magazines; Journals and Periodicals:

Another media under press advertising media is magazines, journals and periodicals. These are specialized publication which gives information about various fields like- business; economics; politics; sports etc. They offer selective circulation throughout the country at reasonable cost. They are published periodically at regular intervals i.e. weekly, monthly, quarterly or annually.

Advantages of Magazine:

(1) The life of magazine is considerably longer than that of newspaper.

(2) As magazines are highly selective in nature, waste of circulation is avoided.

(3) The magazine advertising is more attractive than newspaper advertising as the printing, paper and colour combination are good.

(4) They reach specialized groups conveniently and effectively.

(5) Advertisement in magazines creates prestige, reputation and image of quality in minds of customers.

Disadvantages of Magazine:

(1) The chief demerit of magazine advertising is its low flexibility. The advertiser cannot change its advertisement size, shape and appeal frequently.

(2) The circulation of magazines is limited as compared to newspaper advertising.

(3) Advertising through magazine is more costly as compared to newspaper advertising.

(4) Magazines have appeal only to certain classes of readers.

(c) Broad Cast Media:

Broad cast media includes vehicles like, radio; television and films to deliver advertiser’s message in the house of audience.

1. Radio – Radio is one of the prominent vehicles of advertising in our country. Radio advertising may be straight commercial dialogue or musical commercials. The main advantages associated with it are – human touch; flexibility and economy. The major drawback associated with it is message perishability and time limit.

2. Television – Television is the one of the fastest growing advertising media which used video and audio signals. Product can be demonstrated with explanation by using this media. The relative merits of this media are – deep impact, flexibility and mass communication. The demerits associated with this media are that it is costly and have short life.

3. Film Advertising – It is another broad cast media characterized by sound, motion, colour and timelines. Under this media repeat advertising is possible and has advantages like dramatic impact, selectivity and flexibility and less waste. The major drawback of this media is that it is costly and has limited coverage.

II. Outdoor Advertising Media:

All the vehicles which are meant to reach the people when they are out of their house come under outdoor media. Under out­door media the ad message is placed in different locations which are exposed to moving audience. Different advertising media which come under outdoor advertising media are – posters, printed display, electronic signs, travelling displays, sky writing, sandwich man and the like.

1. Poster – A poster is sheet of paper pasted on wooden or metal board depicting the message. The success of posters depends on its design and its site of pasting.

2. Printed Display – Printed display is printed bulletin or wall painting done in rectangular shape on standard metal sheet.

3. Travelling Display – A travelling display is advertising ad or message printed on vehicles like train, bus, car and the like.

4. Sky Writing – In sky writing advertised message is written in the sky in the form of smoke or fire or the lights.

5. Sandwich Man – In sandwich man advertising is a team of tall and dwarf man who wear the cloths which bear ad-messages.

Advantages of Outdoor Advertising Media:

(1) It has a wide coverage.

(2) It is capable of gaining more attention of the public.

(3) Outdoor advertising is more flexible.

(4) It is economical and has comparatively long life.

(5) In big cities and high traffic areas, outdoor advertising is the most effective form of advertising.

Disadvantages of Outdoor Advertising Media:

(1) The message written under this type of advertising is too brief.

(2) It is quite costly in terms of investment.

(3) It is generally said to be only the reminding activity.

III. Direct Advertising Media:

Direct advertising media is one of the oldest form of advertising for reaching to the customers. It is one of the most important person to person communication by advertiser. It covers all form of printed ads delivered directly to the prospect like – postcards, envelop enclosures, booklet, catalogues, sales letters etc. This method is highly selective and flexible. It also has personal touch without personal contact. However, this method is costly and depends upon the quality of the mailing list.

Advantages of Direct Advertising Media:

(1) It is selective. If a product is meant for a certain class of consumers, all consumers need not be contacted and thus only few can be approached.

(2) It is economical as it saves enormous amount spent in press and other media of advertising.

(3) Another advantage of this media is secrecy.

(4) It creates personal contact between the advertiser and the customer. Thus it adds personal touch which may be missing in other media of advertising.

(5) It reaches even to those places where the salesman cannot approach.

Disadvantages of Direct Advertising Media:

(1) Through direct mail advertising one is able to reach only a limited number of customers.

(2) The preparation of mailing list is a difficult task.

(3) Under the direct mail advertising there are chances of fraud on the part of the advertisers.

(4) This media of advertising cannot be used for all types of commodities. It is suitable for only those products for which the market is limited and appeal is to be made to a certain class of people only.

IV. New Age Media:

Internet and cell phones are covered in this category. Of late companies have been spending huge amounts for this form of promotion. With vast majority of population already covered with cell phones and computers, this advertising media holds good potential. However, the main demerit is that the attention of the viewer is for a limited time period.

Types of Advertising Media:

The advertising media are the various forms of communication through which advertising reaches its audience.

Different types of media are as follows:

1. Newspapers:

It is the most common and the oldest media used by marketers. Newspaper advertising is used extensively by business firms because it is relatively inexpensive and effective as compared to other media. It provides high coverage and limiting coverage facilities, it is beneficial to cover a specific geographic area. Disadvantages of newspaper advertising are it has a short life span, colour reproduction is usually poor. Marketers cannot target specific markets through newspaper advertisement and it is usually read once and then discarded.

Advantages of Newspaper Advertising:

Newspaper is capable of providing different advertising formats to suit an advertiser’s requirements. Newspaper advertising has numerous other advantages for which there is a high degree of acceptance both among the advertisers and the audience.

i. Coverage:

Newspapers have a wide coverage. Through newspaper advertising an advertiser can reach local or regional markets, special interest groups and even different ethnic groups in the most cost-efficient manner. Newspaper is read most and also read in most cases by the entire family. The readers are found equally interested in advertisements as in the news items. Newspaper advertising facilitates comparison shopping when people tend to search for information about various brands at the time they plan to do shopping.

ii. Timeliness:

This is another positive feature of a newspaper and is perceived as a matter of advantage both for the advertisers and the readers. Advertisers can tie in advertising to current events or decide for immediate withdrawal if the circumstances so require.

iii. Flexibility:

Newspapers provide a geographic flexibility also. Advertisers can select the markets to be or not to be given advertising exposure. Advertisers usually decide about those markets where they believe that the message exposure will contribute to the building of demand for the product.

Concerning flexibility in production, advertisers have options such as to select among various advertising formats, to decide about the size of an ad, to decide about the colour of an ad and to decide about days when newspaper would carry the advertising message.

iv. Co-Operative Advertising:

The opportunity for cooperative advertising is another significant advantage provided by a newspaper. The local retailers can easily ‘tie-in’ to national advertising run by the manufacturer. They can run similar campaigns through local newspapers. In addition, the quick action programmes such as sales and coupons are implemented easily through local newspapers.

Disadvantages of Newspaper Advertising:

Due to its specific features, newspaper advertising has certain limitations which inhibit its growth as an advertising medium in comparison to television and radio.

a. Short Life Span:

Although timely, but newspaper is published daily which gives a short life span to newspaper advertising. The average life span of a daily newspaper is 24 hours and so is the life of an ad. Moreover, newspapers are usually read once which limits the opportunity for advertising exposure to only one reading. But such advertising exposures are not fleeting exposures as in the case of television and radio. One can keep them for future reference if there is a need to.

b. Clutter:

As newspapers are overloaded with ads, clutter is the problem with newspaper advertising too. In such a situation, for any ad to attract attention it presents a creative challenge for the advertisers.

c. Lack of Quality Production:

The fixed publication schedule and the need for large number of publications further limits the use of quality paper and good reproduction techniques especially for coloured ads. The poor reproduction capability of newspaper, therefore, directly affects the attention value of the ad.

d. Lack of Suitability to All Segments and All Products:

There are certain market groups to which newspapers fail to provide coverage such as those who are not the frequent newspaper readers or those who speak some foreign language. Similarly, there are certain product categories which need demonstration or are unlikely to be advertised in a newspaper.

A newspaper does not provide adequate environment to run ads for such products and any message delivery concerning these products or services or target group is likely to result in waste exposure only.

Rising cost of national advertising and poor pass along readership of newspapers are the other factors which limit the use of newspaper as an advertising medium.

2. Magazines:

Advertisers can reach very specific market segments through advertisement in special-interest magazines. Like business magazines, sports magazines and health magazines are for specific segments, which provide geographic flexibility. Magazine advertising is more prestigious than newspaper advertising, and it provides high-quality colour reproduction, magazine advertisements have a longer life span. The major disadvantages of magazine advertising are high cost and lack of timeliness.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Magazines:

I. Suitability of Editorial Content:

Along with generalized magazines, there are probably magazines available for each specific group of people. Magazines provide a suitable environment by way of unique editorial content which appeals to a defined set of readers. As a result, magazines offer high amount of selectivity as compared to other forms of medium.

II. Audience Receptivity:

Due to their editorial content, magazines are relied upon as creditable source of information and this credibility of magazine extends to advertising also.

III. Long Life Span:

As compared to other media this is a great advantage of magazine advertising. Unlike newspaper, magazines are re-read, giving an opportunity of repeat exposures. Magazines are read in a leisure way, and so there is a possibility of high attention level for the ad and for the use of detailed copy. In addition, magazines have good pass along readership among friends, colleagues, neighbours, family members and customers which adds another dimension to magazine ad exposure.

IV. High Attraction Value:

Magazine advertising has a high attraction value due to high quality paper and superior photo reproduction both in colour and black and white. When supported by superior editorial content contributed by well-respected writers, magazines carry high prestige which also benefits the ads appearing in the magazines.

V. Low Cost Per Exposure:

Concerning advertising efficiency, magazines provide low per unit cost of reaching potential customers. The appropriate selection of magazine provides reach to select group of customers and keeps waste exposure to minimum. Magazines offer many benefits to advertisers but its limited flexibility, high cost, and limited distribution are the major factors which restrict the universal use of magazine as advertising medium.

VI. Long Lead Time:

Magazine advertising has a long lead time as ads must be submitted well in advance of publication date and so the scope of any kind of changes in between is ruled out. Also, there are only limited choices for ad locations as prime locations like inside the front cover page, or back cover are sold months in advance.

VII. High Absolute Cost:

The disadvantage of magazine advertising is its high cost. On the one hand it provides good quality production, and on the other it has only limited circulation among select group of customers. As a result, magazines do not compare well with other media in terms of its cost efficiency.

3. Direct Mail:

Direct-mail advertising is promotional material mailed directly to individuals. Direct mail is the most selective medium, the effectiveness of direct-mail advertising can be measured because the advertiser has a record of who received the advertisement and can track the prospects. Some organizations are using direct e-mail. A direct-mail campaign may fail if the mailing list is outdated and the mailing does not reach the right people.

4. Outdoor Advertising:

Outdoor advertising consists of short promotional messages on hoardings, billboards, posters, point of purchase advertising and signs. Sign and billboard advertising allow the marketer to focus on a particular geographic area, and it is fairly inexpensive.

Outdoor media is projected to prospects at public places like railway stations, bus stops, market place and crowded areas. However, because most outdoor advertising is directed at a mobile audience, the message must be limited to a few words. Proper placement of outdoor advertisement and high rent of hoardings is the limitation of outdoor advertising.

5. Television:

Television commercials are the most popular medium of advertising, prospects can watch them at their home. It helps to create high brand awareness. All big brands are having their commercials on television- mass marketing is over because there are exponentially more channels out there with cable and satellite television and consumers have fragmented into niche groups with very unique needs, desires, and wants.

Television advertising these days must be highly targeted toward the specific demographic desired. Television advertising is the primary medium for larger firms whose objective is to reach national or regional markets. Skipping or “zapping” of commercials during playback/viewing, high cost of advertisement are the disadvantages of television media.

6. Radio:

Radio is one of the oldest medium of communication. FM radio is popular in metro cites. The geographic coverage can be selected by marketers. Actual rates depend on geographic coverage, the number of commercials contracted and time period. This media is less expensive than other media even small retailers are able to afford radio advertisements. Coverage and appeal are wide, spot programmes can be arranged. Disadvantages are ads in radio are less attractive, demonstration of product is not possible, and listeners may be irritated with the commercial.

Radio advertising possesses the following merits:

(i) Radio advertisements carry an effective appeal and cover numerous listeners of different tastes.

(ii) Radio advertisements teach the illiterate people who cannot read the newspapers and magazines.

(iii) Radio provides selectively to some extent because advertisements can be included in different programmes meant for different types of people.

(iv) Radio advertisements are highly suitable for the promotion of mass scale consumer goods.

The demerits of radio advertising are as under:

(i) Detailed message can’t be broadcast over the radio. People may not remember the message.

(ii) It is non-visual. Thus, the usually impact of illustrating the product is not possible.

(iii) Sometimes, the message is not understood properly by the listeners. Many people switch off their or transistor sets when it is the time for commercials or advertisements.

7. Internet:

Internet is the fastest growing advertising medium and different types of advertisements are possible through internet like banner advertisement- rectangular graphics appearing at the top of most consumer websites, button advertisement- small squarish advertisement appearing at the bottom of a web page, keyword advertisement, featured primarily on Internet search engines, link a specific ad to text or subject matter that an information seeker may enter.

Interstitial advertisement – pop up to display a product ad when viewers click on a website. Hypertext is the specialty of internet here marketers can combine text, pictures and sound, these ads are interactive in nature where customer can make contact and inquiry through e-mail address.

Benefits of using the Internet as an advertising medium include the growth of Internet use by a variety of different types of people and the ability to precisely target a specific audience. Demerit with using the Internet as an advertising medium need connectivity, availability of internet connection, this medium is not popular in rural areas.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Internet Advertising:

There are a number of advantages of internet advertising such as its ability to be specific in targeting, being interactive and so on.

I. Specificity in Targeting:

Internet allows for specificity in targeting the markets, because only those who are interested in specific product category are likely to visit the sites. So, there is very less scope of waste coverage. For its interactive abilities internet tends to involve the targets further and provides more satisfying interactive experiences.

II. Convenience:

The most significant potential of internet is its ability to provide information in the most convenient manner. One can easily have an access to mass information through the search engines and filter it according to the purpose. India is emerging as a lucrative destination for online advertisers on search engines.

According to a study by IAMI (Internet and Mobile Association of India), 65 million people used search engines in India and the market was expected to touch $23 billion in the next four years as compared to $10 billion in the year 2006. Search engine marketing (SEM) is catching up with advertisers because it helps a company to reach a consumer when he/she is actually looking to buy something, unlike media ads, which may not reach the prospective buyer.

III. Sales Potential:

Internet is not merely the information provider. It is equally capable of its sales potential. There are a number of product categories like books and music where sales through internet are significantly large. With internet gaining momentum as the new media format, there are rising prospects of the use of internet advertising for various types of products. The speed, scope of creativity and possibility of specific message designing are the other benefits of using internet advertising.

IV. Problems of Higher Cost, Clutter and Audience Measurement:

Internet has certain negative features or disadvantages and one needs to be judicious enough to explore internet as an advertising medium. The major problem with internet includes clutter, rising cost, lack of accurate audience measurement and the wide scope for occurrence of deception. Although, the cost of establishing one’s site is not expensive but maintaining and updating the same is and cost per thousand (CPM) of advertising on internet are often found to be higher than those of some traditional media forms.

Some of the other major problems of internet advertising are hacking, credit card number thefts, and data collection without consumers’ knowledge.