Are you looking to promote your product, services or content? There are multiple avenues or channels where you can advertise or promote your products or services. As a business owner you should be aware about these advertising media before jumping straight into the marketing arena and start shelling money to promote yourself.

Here we have talked about 9 traditional as well as non-traditional mediums of marketing of advertising.

An advertiser typically has nine options for advertising media as follows –

  • Direct mail
  • Newspapers and Magazines
  • Radio Advertising
  • Television Advertisement
  • Film Advertising
  • Outdoor Advertising
  • Window Display
  • Exhibitions, and
  • Specially Advertising!

Let’s explore each form of advertising in detail –

1. Direct Mail

This is one of oldest forms of advertising media. This method allows prospective buyers to receive messages by mail. This is done by creating a mailing list. This type of advertising can be used to send circular letters, brochures, calendars or booklets. The sales letter appeals to buyers separately.

The letter contains details about the product. These letters are intended to pique the interest of the reader in the product. The letter should be appealing, compelling and interesting. Catalogs and booklets provide detailed information about the prices and descriptions of various products.

This is a very effective method because it establishes direct contact and protects the privacy of advertising. Buyers can receive detailed information about the product. These letters and circulars include personal appeals that can be very helpful in getting buyers’ attention to the product. If the manufacturer sells directly to consumers, this method is possible.

Direct mail advertising has its limitations. You can only access it in a limited way. It can only be used by a limited number of buyers. It is difficult to keep a current mailing list up-to-date and maintain it. This marketing method is not appropriate for all products.

2. Magazines and Newspapers

These are the essential forms of press advertising. Newspapers are the most powerful and effective medium for advertising. Newspapers are rich in information about current events. You might call it a’storehouse of information’. There are weekly, bi-weekly, and daily newspapers. Newspapers are widely read and have the greatest circulation. Newspapers can be national, regional or local.

Every newspaper has an advertisement section that categorizes and designs advertisements. Advertisers should consider several factors before choosing a newspaper: the coverage, class of customers, and cost.

Newspapers have the largest circulation and are universally appealing. Advertising is less expensive than other media. Newspapers have a higher repetition value and can be very useful in introducing new products. They are suitable for all kinds of goods with wider markets.

Newspapers offer a high level of flexibility, i.e. the advertising campaign can be initiated and stopped quickly. Publishers are the primary source of revenue from advertisements. Newspapers offer the most significant benefit: the advertiser’s message is quickly communicated to readers.

Newspapers have other drawbacks. Newspapers have a shorter lifespan and are not recommended for people with limited literacy. People read newspapers casually, especially when they’re in a rush to get to work.

This type of advertising is not secure. Newspaper advertising has another drawback: they are printed in black and white. The newspaper does not cover colour advertisements, which can be more attractive and appealing.


Other important media for communication include periodicals or magazines. Magazines can be published weekly, monthly or quarterly. Magazines are more popular than newspapers and readers tend to read them with greater interest. Magazine advertisements are more informative and appealing. These advertisements are often in color, which gives a lasting impression to the reader and a clear picture of the product.

There are journals and magazines that are intended for the general public as well as a select group of people. There are magazines that focus on industry, finance, economics, and trade. Special magazines are available for children, men and women. These magazines are more durable and can be used to advertise specific products.

Magazines are less flexible than newspapers. The advertisement is sent out to the press several days prior to publication so last-minute changes can’t be made. It has a lower repetition value and cannot be kept secret.

Advertising costs are higher than newspapers. They are not suitable for readers with high education and their circulation is small. Magazines are not suitable for the introduction of new products due to their lack of continuity.

3. Radio Advertising

Radio advertising is very much in demand these days. Advertisements are broadcast from various stations of All India Radio. Radio advertising can be described as “word-of-mouth advertising on a large scale.” Advertising messages can be sent in different languages.

Radio advertising has the advantage of reaching all listeners, no matter how educated or illiterate. Radio advertising is an effective medium to promote consumer products on a large scale. This medium has a wider reach and can be heard by a wide audience. It ensures quicker repetition.

Radio advertising has a shorter life span, limited memory and few messages. Advertising costs are higher. The message might not be heard by the receiver. There is no secret. This is especially useful for radio users. This is less flexible and has a lower personal touch.

4. Television Advertising

This medium is rapidly growing and has gained increased popularity. Because it has sound and sight, it is more efficient than radio. Pictorial presentation is more powerful and impressive, and leaves a lasting impression on viewers’ minds.

It is expensive and can only be used by large companies. After the presentation of the advertisement, it cannot be referred to again. The advertisement’s duration is very short.

Despite the drawbacks mentioned above, this advertising method is rapidly gaining popularity and rapid coverage.

5. Film advertising

This is also known cinema advertising. This is also a way to provide sight and hearing aids, similar to television. Big business houses do not prepare short advertisement films. They outsource this task to other cinema houses or advertising agencies so they can show them to the audience during intermission or before regular shows. Although it has a greater repetition value, it is not shown to the same audience. Its coverage is very limited, which only benefits the local population.

This medium is very expensive and requires higher distribution costs as well as film production costs. Advertisement films are only available to large companies. It allows for greater flexibility, at higher costs. Its effectiveness can’t be measured. Apart from that, filmmaking is a tedious process and involves a lot of time and money. So only big brands can afford that.

6. Outdoor Advertising

Advertising can be done in a variety of media, including posters, placards or electric displays, neon signs, sandwichmen and sky writing, as well as bus, train, and tram advertising. This is also called ‘Mural Advertising’. Outdoor advertising’s main goal is to grab the attention of passersby in a blink of an eye. This form of an advertising usually works as it catches attention on traffic signals and bus stops, train platforms, on the road turnings, etc.

This is the best medium for advertising. This works well for household and consumable items like soaps, medicines and fans.

Placards and posters are often placed on walls near bus stops, railway stations and roadside. These posters are usually made from thick paper, metal plates or wood and contain an advertising message that can easily be read from afar.

These posters can also be found on the backs of trams, buses, and trains. They are very useful in communicating the message to all parts of the city. Expert painters create painted displays that are attractive and colorful to impress the public.

To impress passersby, you can also use neon signs or electric displays. These signs convey a short message. This is a very expensive device.

Sandwich-men carry the posters, and they move around from one street to another. They sing praises of the product and shout them out. Sky writing is also known by the name air advertising.

Advertisers’ messages are written by the pilots of the aircrafts that carry them. Even from far away, the message can be clearly seen. The message and images of the product can also be flown by balloons.

This type of advertising is more visible and leaves a lasting impression. This type of advertising is great for creating a brand image and promoting the product. You can design it to suit the localities and has more flexibility. This medium requires less time and effort from the advertiser. This type of advertising medium is more durable and economically efficient.

It is used after all other advertising media, and has been called residuary or reminder publicity.

Sticking bills and posters on walls can cause damage to buildings and negatively affect the cleanliness and beauty of an area.

Many media, including skywriting, sandwichmen and balloons, are extremely expensive. These media are out of reach for small traders.

7. Window Display

This is a very common way for retailers to display their products in shop windows to draw customers. This is also called exterior display.

This is the best and most direct way to influence people. Window displays are very appealing to passers-by. It helps to evoke the desire to buy in potential customers. It is a silent seller.

This method can only be used if the goods are properly and systematically displayed in the windows. Regularly-changing the articles in the windows is a must. Advertisers should remember that the window is his shop’s index. Window displays should be displayed with the utmost care.

8. Exhibitions and Fairs

An exhibition or trade fair on a large scale is one that is attended by many traders and manufacturers. The products are then sold to the large audience who visits the exhibition. It can be organized on a local, provincial, or international level. EXPO 70 in Japan, ASIA 72, and the recent Delhi trade fair are just a few examples of international exhibitions.

Different traders can use these pavilions to display their products. Manufacturers also give out sales literature to the public and sometimes provide free samples of their products. Customers are also offered the opportunity to see the product in action. Customers are able to clearly understand how the product works and how to use it.

International exhibitions allow traders from different countries to gather at one location. They can easily share their experiences with each other, which is very useful and informative for everyone. There is ample learning opportunities. It offers a wider market for sales due to the large number of visitors.

9. Specially Advertising

Many business houses offer free products to customers in an effort to increase sales. On the articles, the name of the firm and dealer are inscribed. Companies may offer personal utility items like shampoo, oils or cooking items, free books, etc. The product samples are usually distributed for promotion. Also the product images and description, offers, etc. are printed on the packaging for users awareness.

Hope you found this discussion on types of advertising media useful. Please let us know your thoughts in the comments section.

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