The title of the article was “Advertising, promotion, and the competitive advantage of interwar British department stores” and it was written by Peter Scott and James Walker. This article was published in The Economic History Review…
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Findings Promotional activity drew the customers into large central premises, thus helping the department stores fend off competition. The authors found numerous distinct regional strategies of promotion that were shaped by differences in the consumer markets’ types that were served. The authors found significant convergence of policy among the stores as they primarily used the promotional activity in order to imprint a robust brand image of the institution in the consumers’ minds. The authors found that press advertising had a strong positive effect over the sales as well as the net margins contrary to the views of the buyers and executives of John Lewis. These can be interpreted as elasticities. The authors found a well-defined impact of the direct mail advertising on the net margins. Although considerable returns were found to specific media, yet regional variations were noticed in the investment in such media which is indicative of the fact that the returns to alternative media exhibit regional differences. The authors have identified a lot of diversity in the weightings of the activities among establishments and the existence of regional differences. Sustenance of a considerable proportion of the returns attained from a survey of the British department stores enables the quantification of these trends and evaluation of the promotional strategies’ and expenditures’ impact upon the performance of store. The researchers have found substantial returns to promotion and advertising, that showed considerable variation with regions following the patterns of urbanization and press readership. Criticism Certain objections can be made to the methodological approach adopted by the authors. The first objection is that advertising should ideally evaluate or...
The author of the article, on which this annotation is based, made the research about factors, that determined British advertising’s golden age and the increase of national advertising expenditure
Industry-level research about the factors responsible for the expansion of advertising expenditure, links between the promotional media and press advertising, the varieties of strategies of advertising, and the returns to investment in the fields of promotion and advertising was scanty. That prompts the authors to elaborate on the subject in their own research
This article has employed of a mix of both qualitative and quantitative archival data to study the methods of promotion of the department stores in interwar Britain, alterations in the promotional mix across the various kinds of store, and the reversion to activities of promotion.
The interesting thing about this article is that it draws on archival evidence as well as a comprehensive dataset of the department store operating expenditures that evaluate the different strategies of publicity that are used by the department stores in Britain.
Promotional activity drew the customers into large central premises, thus helping the department stores fend off competition. The authors have identified a lot of diversity in the weightings of the activities among establishments and the existence of regional differences.
Certain objections can be made to the methodological approach adopted by the authors. However, the points of criticism have been considered by the authors and they have provided suitable justifications for them in the article
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