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The German advertising industry – from 1950 to 2018

  • Purpose The purpose of this paper is to review the development of the German advertising industry starting from 1950 to 2018 with a special focus on the American influence. Design/methodology/approach The paper uses the oral history methodology. The content is based on 27 semi-structured interviews with current and former experts from the German and American advertising industry. An analysis of secondary sources supports the line of argumentation. Findings The paper confirms the outstanding role of the American influence on the German advertising industry, owing to new standards of professionalism, to novel versions of terminology and to the introduction of the theory of marketing. However, incompatible management styles, increasing global competition and financial pressure diminished the impact. Likewise, the American interference did not suppress the development of specific German industry characteristics such as a strong entrepreneurial culture or sustainable leadership. Originality/value This paper provides an overview of the history of German advertising with a focus on advertising agencies in the period from 1950 to today (2018). Further, this paper assesses the special impact of the American influence on the German advertising industry. Further, subjects of investigation are particularities of the German advertising industry, such as special attributes of agency leaders and their relationship with clients, distinct versions of ownership structures, agency service offerings and, finally, the role of creativity.

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Document Type:Article
Author:Damian Hesse, Katja Lurie-Stoynaov
Chairs and Professorships:Chair of Marketing Management and Sustainability
Parent Title (English):Journal of Historical Research in Marketing
Place of publication:Bingley
Publisher:Emerald Publishing Limited
Volume:No. 1
Year of Completion:2019
Edition:Vol. 12
First Page:101
Last Page:125
Content Focus:Academic Audience
Peer Reviewed:Yes
Rankings:AJG Ranking / 1
SJR Ranking / Q3
Licence (German):License LogoUrheberrechtlich geschützt