January 24, 2011

Project One: Typographic Campaign (Part 1) - Leo Burnett

Leo Burnett

What helps people, helps business.”
Leo Burnett, on design

I chose this particular quotation by Leo Burnett because of the raw sensibility and dedication of Burnett's pathos based advertising. This quote is a strong reminder that Graphic Design is a creative field, but it is also very much a business profession. Good design is good business. Without good design we as designers fail to help support good causes, or get products that could be breakthroughs noticed. We exist to help shed light on innovation. Leo Burnett founded his business on the ideal of honest advertising, and celebrating the American spirit. For these reasons I have chosen his quotation for this project.

Leo Burnett was an advertising executive who is responsible for creating the Jolly Green Giant, the Marlboro Man, Tucan Sam, Charlie the Tuna, Morris the Cat, Pillsbury Doughboy, and the 7up "spot", and Tony the Tiger.

Leo Burnett formed Leo Burnett Company, his own firm based in Chicago which became the 10th largest advertising agency in the world, and the eighth largest in the United States. One of the few not based in New York City. It is best known for major advertising campaigns, grounded in traditional American values, for major American consumer products corporations.

When Burnett first started his business in August 1935 he had one account, a staff of eight, and a bowl of apples on each desk in the reception lobby. The agency's only client was the Minnesota Valley Canning Company, which had been with Burnett's old firm. They had chosen to work with Burnett because the management at Minnesota Valley liked Leo Burnett's personally. "I want the little guy with dandruff and the rumpled suit," said the president of the company. To reward this display of confidence and loyalty, Burnett created the Jolly Green Giant.

Most of the firms of this time were based in trendy New York City, this made the Chicago company something of an oddity. Burnett's ads  reflected reflected a mid-American homeyness rather than an eastern sophistication. The Green Giant and Kellogg campaigns typify use this technique. Both has been historically aimed at the emotions of their respective audiences, portraying the products with a large degree of human warmth.

During the 1950's his company was able to reflect the American values of strength, tradition, comfort, and family in its advertising campaigns. This won a number of new and profitable clients and secured those accounts already in the Burnett agency.

Burnett also went on to create the Marlboro Man in 1954, which without a doubt became his most successful advertising campaign.

Burnett also created the following slogans:

"Fly the Friendly Skies" - United Airlines
"The best to you each morning" - Kellogg's
"You're in good hands" - Allstate Insurance

He was also named Time magazine as one of the 100 most influential people for the 20th century.

More Information:

Art Directors Club


Marty Maxwell Lane said...

Excellent post. Very comprehensive.

On the writing:
"Without good design we as designers fail to help support good causes or get products that could be breakthroughs noticed."

^ that sentence needs some commas

spell check:
inovation (innovation)
eight (eighth)
has (had)

Eli Sebastian Brumbaugh said...

Thanks Marty!

I'll make some adjustments