25 Y&R's Whole Egg theory
An internal agency announcement made in 1972 by Ed Ney, then president of Y&R International, puts Young & Rubicam at the vanguard of industry practice on a topic that remains decades later much debated. Describing the agency's approach to offering integrated services-not just advertising but direct, PR, sales promotion and others-Mr. Ney refers to it as "the Whole Egg." During the mid-1970s, Y&R buys numerous companies specializing in non-consumer advertising marketing disciplines, such as healthcare communications shop Sudler & Hennessey and direct response agency Wunderman, Ricotta & Kline. The name and the concept catch on. In the three decades following the "Whole Egg's" introduction, Y&R revises its go-to-market strategy for integration several times. In the 1990s, for instance, the agency says its structure is "wired" to best deliver solutions, with the creation of teams to bring a coordinated, multidisciplinary approach. But the practice of integration, where one agency meets all of a client's needs, has been difficult to achieve: Compensation and turf battles have precluded a full embrace of one-stop-shopping.
24 Levittown opens; suburbs mushroom
Levittown is both a place and a symbol. Levittown the place is the 17,000-house cookie-cutter suburb that Bill Levitt starts building in October 1947 in a Long Island potato field. People who couldn't buy a home because of the housing shortage during World War II jump at a chance to buy their Shangri-la.
Levittown also is shorthand for the postwar mass suburbanization. By the mid-1950s, Levitt-style subdivisions are sprouting up across the country. The suburban population spurts by 43% between 1947 and 1953; it also holds a disproportionate amount of income. The concomitant rise in consumerism is a boon for marketers, as new homeowners load up on appliances, automobiles and other necessities for out-of-the-city living. While artists and social critics denounce the suburbs as soulless places-remember folk singer Pete Seeger droning on about "little boxes made of ticky tacky"?-they have become home to a powerful block of consumers.
23 Communications Act of 1934
With the passage of the Communications Act of 1934 in June and the creation of the Federal Communications Commission, all forms of communications are placed under one jurisdiction. The first seven-member FCC convenes in July 1934 and immediately signals to broadcasters and advertisers that it's willing to do business with commercial interests. In exchange for FCC favor, the networks and stations must make the commission look good by offering significant "public interest" fare. This comes out of the nets' own pockets for the most part through unsponsored public affairs and educational programs. But it's worth it because it preserves radio as an ad-supported medium.
The FCC generally limits itself to technical and antitrust matters. It decrees FM as the audio component of TV in 1939 and orders the breakup of NBC in 1943. Its "fairness doctrine" also helps make "balance" a hallmark of public issue coverage.
The judicial basis of FCC "indecency" censorship is laid in 1978 in FCC vs. Pacifica Foundation. The FCC acquires an intermediate censorship weapon in the form of fines (or threat of fines), which some believe today is as arbitrary as the concept of "indecency" itself. Seventy years after its founding, the FCC under Chairman Michael Powell finds itself a central player in the controversy over "values."
22 African-Americans enter ad industry
African-Americans establish an entrepreneurial presence in the advertising industry in the 1940s. In that decade, Vomack Advertising, in Inwood, N.Y., is established. In 1943, David Sullivan opens the Negro Market Organization in New York; also that year, Fusche, Young & Powell launches in Detroit. Other black-owned shops open: Former magazine illustrator Vince Cullers founds an agency in 1956 and wins acclaim for campaigns such as one for Johnson Products' Afro Sheen hair-care products.
Other black-owned agencies include Burrell Advertising in Chicago, Don Coleman Advertising in Southfield, Mich., and Mingo Chisholm and UniWorld Group in New York. Success varies: Burrell and Coleman in the 1990s sell to holding companies Publicis Groupe and True North Communications, respectively, while Mingo Chisholm in 2004 files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Oakland, Calif.-based independent Carol H. Williams Advertising, founded in 1986, expands to include offices in Chicago and Detroit; Byron Lewis founds UniWorld in 1969 because no white-led agency will hire him. He's still chairman-CEO of the shop, now 49%-owned by WPP Group.
Yet at large agencies, African-Americans' progress over the past half-century in reaching upper ranks is mixed. In the 1960s, an investigation by the New York City human rights commission finds that agencies' hiring and promotion of minorities lag other industries. In 2004, the commission again begins investigating agencies' minority employment record, spurred by charges that advertising hasn't kept pace with other categories such as financial services and law. In 2003, WPP's appointment of Ann Fudge to lead Young & Rubicam makes industry history, the first African-American woman to head a major agency. At Publicis, Starcom MediaVest Group boosts Renetta McCann to CEO of Starcom North America in 2004, making her one of the highest-ranking black females in media.
21 Nader and the era of consumer advocacy
Consumer activist Ralph Nader graduates from Princeton and later Harvard Law School. While at Harvard, Mr. Nader gets interested in the auto industry and observes that car companies built for style and cost but focused little on safety.
Mr. Nader leaves college to become a lawyer in Hartford, Conn., but soon moves to Washington, D.C., as his interest in consumer advocacy grows. He moves from social critic to political activist. His 1965 book, "Unsafe at Any Speed," prompts new legislation in the National Traffic & Motor Vehicle Safety Act, passed the following year. He also helps influence numerous other pieces of legislation that protect consumers, taxpayers and the environment, including the Clean Air Act and the Freedom of Information Act. In 1971, Mr. Nader sets up Public Citizen, which spawns a number of consumer-oriented subgroups, or "Nader's Raiders."
contributing: james b. arndorfer, claire atkinson, john mcdonough, lisa sanders
MILESTONEs to date
75 Advertising Age launches
74 Birth of reality TV
73 Gannett launches USA Today
72 Food marketers consolidate
71 Motivational research emerges
70 RJR retires Old Joe
69 Action for Children's Television founded
68 Food, Drug & Cosmetics Act passed
67 Absolut vodka is launched
66 Townsend Brothers/copy testing
65 Edsel introduced
64 "A diamond is forever"
63 MCI competes with AT&T
62 Fox network debuts
61 Tampax starts educating women
60 LBOs shake up marketing world
59 Birth of Univision and Hispanic TV
58 Advertising Council formed
57 Reese's Pieces soar via "E.T."
56 Emergence of "positioning"
55 Compensation consultant at IBM
54 Mary Wells' WRG raises the bar
53 Census 2000: a wake-up call
52 Nike signs Michael Jordan
51 Marlboro Man saddles up
50 Buick ads back used cars
49 Beginnings of syndicated TV
48 Breaking ad talent race barrier
47 Universal Product Code unveiled
46 Bank of America charges ahead
45 J&J's Tylenol tampering case
44 Bubble bursts as dot-coms crash
43 'Star Wars' saga begins
42 Avis declares that it's No. 2
41 Gallup applies research skills
40 Cigs "hazardous to your health"
39 Ike's "Man from Abilene"
38 "Pepsi Generation," the cola wars
37 Nielsen tracks share of market
36 Beverages go "light-ly"
35 Apple Computer's "1984" spot
34 Photo-driven Life on newsstands
33 Reeves' "Unique Selling Proposition"
32 Start of cable, satellite-delivered TV
31 "Bug bomb," aerosol can technology
30 Quiz show scandals change TV buying
29 Birth of the daytime soap opera
28 HotWired runs 1st Internet ad
27 Remote control device arrives
26 Packard's "Hidden Persuaders"