Where Was the First TV Advertisement?

December 10, 2014
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First TV AdvertisementWhere did the first TV advertisement air in the United States? Much like the first radio advertisement, it’s really up for debate. Many people say the first television commercial aired on July 1, 1941, and advertised Bulova watches. This particular spot was 10 seconds long and cost $9 to air, during a day and age when there were very few TV sets to be found.

Others believe the first-ever TV commercial aired much earlier, on December 7, 1930; during which video was telecast from a CBS radio orchestra show called The Fox Trappers. This was more than a decade before the Bulova watch commercial, and it featured the I. J. Fox Furrier Company of Boston sponsoring a program on W1XAV. At the time, the station broadcast on 2.1-2.2 mHz, with 500 watts of power; and 60 lines and 20 frames per second.

First TV Advertisement Debate

It could be simply a matter of semantics, meaning some consider a sponsorship to be an actual TV advertisement, while others just consider it a sponsorship. It could also be that the 1930 Fox Furrier commercial is not recognized as the first TV advertisement because it was an “illegal” ad (simply because it was a spot for the fur industry) and therefore was subject to a fine after it aired.

Despite the many changes in technology since the first TV advertisement, the basic premise of running ads on television remains the same. Do you want to find out what it takes to get your automotive dealership on the airwaves in your community? JKR Automotive Advertising is offering a FREE TV advertising review, no strings attached. Simply pick up the phone and call Eric Tigner at (321) 397-0777 today. In doing so, you’ll get complimentary input from JKR, one of the automotive industry’s advertising giants.

JKR Automotive Advertising: We Move Cars.

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