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December 30 , 2010

The Age of Persuasion

How Marketing Ate Our Culture


Stop to consider the culture of the 21st century: Each morning, you might hear a half-dozen ads on the radio before your feet touch the floor. Staggering out of bed, you’ll pass brand logos on your clothing and in your bathroom. By the end of the day, hundreds - perhaps thousands - of marketing messages have targeted you. And yet so little is understood about how marketing affects our lives, our society, and our world.
Enter Terry O’Reilly and Mike Tennant, the ad men behind The Age of Persuasion, the popular radio show broadcast on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation and Sirius Radio. They have made it their mission to share the back-room story of modern marketing, entertaining asides and all:
“Think of advertisers as millions of ants in a colony, each working hard and each with its own objective. Except that in this colony, every single ant is competing against the others. That’s the ad business. Almost every ad you see, hear, and otherwise experience is competing for a piece of your imagination. And like any cross-section of humanity, the vast, worldwide advertising community is diverse: composed of geniuses and idiots, saints and buffoons, and everything in between.”
From the early players to the Mad Men of the 1960s and beyond, O’Reilly and Tennant offer insights into a rapidly evolving industry. Smart and funny, The Age of Persuasion provides an entertaining - and eye-opening - look at a world driven by marketing.
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