After watching the TV advertisements in class on Thursday, I started to think about the use of animation for marketing. Some of the most famous and longest lasting “cartoon” characters are actually results of advertising. It is because people are able to associate brands and products with a character that is able to change depending on the changes in culture, that animation characters are so popular with advertisers.
One of these animation characters, that was one of my favorites as a child, was Tony the Tiger who sold Frosted Flakes cereal. Boxes of Frosted Flakes featuring Tony began in 1951, but it was not until the 1970s that Tony became animated and developed a personality that captured the attention of kids. Tony’s look evolved over the years as the looks of animation and the different cultural styles changed.
Another example of this animation marketing that has grown over the years is the Keebler Elves. The Elves were first used in 1968 and have developed a story line over time. The “head elves” of the Hollow Tree Factory, where the elves work, has changed a couple of times and more elves continue to be added. For every commercial using these elves, depending on which product they are selling, the different personalities of the elves come out. The elves were so popular on the advertisements that they transitioned into being a part of the Keebler logo.
Some more examples of these advertisement characters are Jolly the Green Giant, the Brawny Man, and Snap, Crackle, and Pop.