1941: Ad Council sets up shop as America enters World War II

Ad council ad

In 1941, the Ad Council (initially called the War Advertising Council) was set up when America entered World War II.

It began implementing (on a massive scale) the idea of using advertising to influence American society on a range of social issues.

Its first campaigns focused on the country’s needs during World War II, encouraging the American public to invest their savings in government bonds.

More than 70 years and hundreds of campaigns later, the Ad Council remains America’s leading producer of public service communications, inspiring calls-to-action where icons and slogans are woven into the fabric of American culture, like Smokey Bear and the ubiquitous ‘Friends Don’t Let Friends Drive Drunk’.

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