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Institutional Advertising – Meaning, Definition, Objectives, Advantages and Examples

It is any kind of advertising dealing with the promotions of business, institutional, organizational or related units. The main goal of institutional advertising’s promotional ventures is to motivate the support for a company, boost its reputation and build a good image of the company.

It is also called corporate advertising. With institutional advertising, the company promotes itself instead of promoting its products. Products are not sold directly in Institutional advertising.

Objectives of Institutional Advertising

  • To promote the company’s beliefs, ideas, visions, and aim.
  • To build on the image of a company as a whole instead of creating and building on the image of a service or product.
  • To encourage positive qualities that set the company apart like dependability, commendable customer care, or low price.

Medium of Institutional Advertising

Radio, Television, Print, and Digital Advertising are the most popular means for Institutional Advertising.

Medium of Institutional Advertising

Advantages of Institutional Advertising

1. Dealing with a negative attitude

It is one of the most promising ways of dealing with the negative image of a company in the eyes of its consumers. The negative image of various companies is countered through institutional advertising.

2. Increases the company’s awareness

Using institutional advertising to boost the company’s image aids in improving brand awareness.

3. Developing brand identity

Following one theme throughout the use of institutional advertising can aid in building a united brand identity.

4. Encouraged investors

Rather than just the company’s products, the whole company’s image motivates the investors.

5. Aid from the government

Benefits and aids are received from the government by the companies that participate in good CSR activities.

6. Build a subdued sales pitch

A subdued sales pitch can be built with the help of institutional advertising. The consumers subjected to institutional advertising will be unaware of the sales pitch used to attract them towards a company’s products.

7. To humanize the brand

To find allies and friends in the audience and instill a sense of inclusion within the employees and training them.

Disadvantages of Institutional Advertising

1. ROI

Many specialists believe that in the short run, institutional advertising adds to the company’s advertising cost and does not get appropriate returns. This is because it concentrates on promoting the company instead of its products.

2. Misguided consumers

Like product advertising, institutional advertising tends to misguide consumers because of which they feel like they have been misguided by the company.

3. A positive impact is not guaranteed

Institutional advertising is only a PR activity and does not guarantee an increase in sales of services or goods.

Institutional Advertising Example

Institutional Advertising Example

Social ad campaigns are created by government agencies in order to spread awareness among people regarding programs and social issues. Anti-pollution, anti-corruption, child immunization, and anti-dowry examples of some of these programs.

A huge number of people who work hard all through the night are not noticed by the public. This campaign by McDonald’s featured a group of “invisible” staff where they are shown tucking hospital patients in, stocking supermarket shelves, etc.

In the end, three-night workers are shown gaining recognition at McDonald’s. The advert ends with the catchphrase  “If you’re aware, we’re awake”.

Example – McDonald’s ‘Night workers’

Agency: Leo Burnett London Creative team: Chaka Sobhani, Pete Heyes, Rory Hall, Steph Ellis, Lou Pegg Client: Ben Fox, Production company: Rogue Films Director: Sam Brown.

Example – P&G Thank You, Mom

Example – P&G Thank You Mom

In 2010, Thank You, Mom was the biggest and most successful global campaign in P&G’s 175-year history with:

  • $500 million in global incremental P&G sales,
  • 76 billion global media impressions,
  • Over 74,000,000 global views
  • Over 370,000,000 Twitter interactions.

Example – McDonald’s

Example – McDonalds


Advertising Agency: DDB, Sweden

Copywriter: Magnus Jakobsson

Art Director: Fredrik Simonsson

Account Manager: Pelle Josephson

Production Manager/runner: Michael Bugaj

Typography: Daniel Liljas

Example – Coca Cola – Arctic Home

Coca Cola – Arctic Home

Example – Levi’s ‘Go Forth’ campaign by Wieden+Kennedy

Levi’s ‘Go Forth’ campaign by Wieden+Kennedy

Levi’s Go Forth, a new voice and campaign for Levi’s brand and Levi’s 501 jeans. The campaign is inspired by the passion Walt Whitman felt for the potential of America and the promise of the future.

Films were created to demonstrate Levi’s awareness and relevance in the world through “America” and “Pioneers! O Pioneers” accompanied by readings of Whitman’s poems of the same name.