By Douglas Ward
Charles Coolidge Parlin used to be thought of by way of many to be the founding father of marketplace learn. operating for the dominant Curtis Publishing corporation, he revolutionized the via delivering further price to advertisers via information regarding the racial, ethnic, and neighborhood biases of readers and shoppers. through protecting touch with either companies and clients, Parlin and Curtis guides have been in a position to flip purchaser wishes into company earnings. In a brand new model of commercial, Douglas Ward offers an exciting enterprise heritage that explains how and why Curtis built its marketplace learn department. He finds the evolution and influence of Parlin’s paintings, which understood how readers and advertisers within the rising shopper financial system checked out magazines and ads. Ward additionally examines the cultural and social purposes for the improvement and use of industry research—particularly in regard to Curtis’ readership of upper-income elites. the outcome weaves the tales of Parlin and Curtis into the alterations happening in American company and advertisements within the early 20th century.
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Additional info for A New Brand of Business: Charles Coolidge Parlin, Curtis Publishing Company, and the Origins of Market Research
They also rejected the formalist idea that natural laws explained all human behavior. 24 Parlin used all of those techniques in his market studies for Curtis Publishing. He made ample use of government statistics and compiled industry statistics of his own as he went about his work in the Division of Commercial Research. As a matter of routine, he turned the statistical data into charts and graphs, primarily as a means for identifying marketplace trends and for piecing together a rough overview of a market.
Parlin was momentarily stumped. ”1 Twenty-five years later, that answer did not seem nearly as outrageous to Parlin as it did that night after speaking with Hazen. “I think . . 2 In 1911, though, after accepting the job as director of Curtis Publishing’s new Division of Commercial Research, Parlin wished AN UNLIKELY LEADER 41 many times for more knowledge than he had. His job description was vague, and the executives at Curtis knew it was vague. They knew no better than Parlin what they wanted out of the new department.
10 The chief means of reaching this new consuming public was advertising. Advertising proliferated in magazines, newspapers, billboards, streetcar posters, store window displays, direct mailings, fliers, and just about anywhere else a trademark could be displayed. “Advertising, like everything else in this wonderful country, has developed too fast,” the agent Earnest Elmo Calkins wrote in 1915. ”11 Between 1900 and 1914, the number of national advertisers rose from 6,000 to about 13,000, and as early as 1907, advertising accounted 20 CHAPTER 1 for half of the pages in most magazines.
A New Brand of Business: Charles Coolidge Parlin, Curtis Publishing Company, and the Origins of Market Research by Douglas Ward