Manning Seil and Frank B Senger, Advertising Copy and Layout. Danville, IL: Interstate Printers & Publishers, 1958.
In the field of advertising, prescriptive literature includes copywriting guides, advertising textbooks and general introductions to salesmanship strategies. Some of these target specific aspects of the industry, while others offer a more comprehensive view. Some may focus specifically on print advertisements, while others consider diverse media and forms. In the more comprehensive guides, the authors and editors often try to strike a balance between investigating physical form of the ad--technical matters such as visual layout, verbal mechanics and test audiences--and theorizing the intellectual form--more abstract questions such as what constitutes a creative idea or what inspires consumer behavior. The authors come from a variety of professional backgrounds, however most are either business and marketing professors or freelance advertising consultants.
Despite their varied approaches to the topic of public relations, these guides represent a unified, transhistorical effort to bolster the image of advertising as a reputable endeavor, capable of being dissected into a series of teachable steps. Studied individually, the texts offer a glimpse into the accepted practices of the the industry at a given point in history. However, when considered collectively, they track the major socio-cultural shifts of the twentieth century.
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