Peak & Sudden Decline

In the late 1940s, commercial radio was so popular, no one could imagine it ending.

Radio was so popular, the little girl can't imagine life without it in 1945

Radio was so popular, the little girl can’t imagine life without it in 1945

 

Many criticized the relentless hard sell advertising and programming. In the novel, The Hucksters, a former adman decried sponsor control of radio programming. Broadcasters, he argued, should control their programs. The hero of this novel stands up to the sponsor, and leaves radio.

This bestselling novel criticized sponsor control of programming

This bestselling novel criticized sponsor control of programming

 

In the late 1940s, many anticipated television, yet none knew that it would replace radio as the central entertainment medium. Here, Young & Rubicam advertise their television advertising expertise. By the end of the 1950s, advertising agencies no longer dominated broadcast program production. The expense of television made it impossible for agencies to make a profitable business out of programming. Hollywood movie studios soon became the dominant television producers. And sponsorship all but died out.

The expense of TV ended ad agencies program production and, ultimately, single sponsored shows

The expense of TV ended ad agencies program production and, ultimately, single sponsored shows

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