Collection: Advertising

Advertising in the developing world was dominated by agencies in the imperial powers, especially from London and Paris. J. Walter Thompson became the first American agency to expand internationally with the opening of J. Walter Thompson London in 1899. It expanded across the globe, becoming one of the first American agencies in Egypt, South Africa and Asia. Much of the pressure to expand came from General Motors, which wanted to export its automobiles worldwide. Ford turned to N.W. Ayer, which began its expansion in Europe and Latin America in the 1930s. The typical policy was to put an American manager in charge, and hire a staff drawn from locals who had a better understanding of the language and the culture. In 1941–42, however, Ayer closed its foreign offices and decided to concentrate on the American market.