The Original Mobile Advertising

Matchbook Ads
(Image from Flickr.)

Stan Adler takes a look back at the origins of mobile advertising. From Digiday:

Recently, I bought a collection of vintage matchbooks at an estate sale. After arranging a few on my desktop, I realized that a marketing tactic, every bit as ubiquitous as what we now call mobile ad tech, was commonplace in the first half of the last century: rich content — 70 to 80 words per book — complete with illustrations, coupons, and call-to-action copy that could convert.

It was easy to imagine how these incendiary little devices held the potential — with some fusty fingering — to ignite ideas, maintain marketing superiority and set commercial benchmarks with advertising that were universally affordable.

I’m sure those matchbook ads worked great. But I have no idea how people back then got by without WhatsApp.

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