Some people believe the world's first advertisement was created on a sidewalk in the ancient city of Ephesus. The photo below is of the ad, carved into the street. The etched left foot is a call to action for people to turn left. Depictions of a heart and a woman represent a brothel. So the ad says, "turn left here to find a brothel."
Last week, I was in London and I saw the ad below. The arrow clearly lets us know there's a Subway just 20 seconds ahead.
Isn't it incredible how the more things change, the more they stay the same?
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The reason this type of advertising is still around today is because it's the most basic, fundamental, and important type of marketing communication a business can do. That's why it's the first marketing communication must-have I wrote about in my book:
Utilize your physical location if you have a brick-and-mortar presence.
That means putting a sign outside your business to let people know where it is. And it extends to putting a sign near your business to direct traffic to it. We see this all the time along highways in the US: McDonald's at this exit.
If you have a business with a physical presence in which you interact with customers frequently, this type of communication is critical. That's why the tactic has gone unchanged for thousands of years.
There's never a lack of ideas.