What is Impact Advertising?

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  • Written By: G. Wiesen
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 12 October 2019
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Impact advertising is a type of advertising that, as the name suggests, seeks to make an immediate and memorable impact on the viewer. These types of advertisements can take just about any form, from physical real world examples to memorable advertising campaigns that utilize the Internet and various websites to form larger advertising opportunities. Though complicated advertising campaigns such as viral marketing may not be a part of traditional impact advertising, these newer methods of interactive advertising certainly strive for the same goal.

Giant, inflated, purple gorillas holding up banners, fliers handed to pedestrians or placed on car windshields, and hot air balloons with company names scrawled across them are all examples of different forms of impact advertising. These sorts of efforts can be grandiose and expensive or more mundane and minor, but in any situation the purpose of the advertisements is to get the brand name and image into the minds of consumers. Unlike other forms of consumer or industrial advertising, however, these campaigns are not limited to television, radio, or print mediums but exist in the real world.


The Internet has also been utilized as an avenue for both passive and aggressive forms of impact advertising. From the pop-up and pop-under advertisements that many websites have utilized, to plain banners with product names, and animated video features showing off games and television shows, these forms of impact advertising have all been used on the Internet. Though at times these types of advertisements have seemed annoying and been considered an obnoxious hassle by many computer users, they have often still been effective in getting a product’s image or name into the minds of potential customers. The lasting memory of a product name or logo may go beyond the memory of closing pop-ups and the purpose of the advertisement has been achieved.

In the 21st century, with the proliferation of computers, Internet access, and wireless telephones with greater and greater computing power and multimedia options, new forms of advertising have developed that incorporate all of these features in ways that create greater impact than ever before. These types of campaigns, often called viral marketing, can utilize numerous websites and often involve the intended audience of the advertisement as a participant within the commercial campaign. A number of movies and video games have used such campaigns to create impact advertising that not only markets a brand but directly involves that brand in the lives of the targeted consumers, even before anything is purchased.



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