From 50 to 5000 Ads per day: Advertising in Jamaica

I remember growing up watching JBC and looking forward to the summers when “Rags to Riches” was on. Watching a movie on local TV was a delight with just minimal advertising interruptions. If you remember those days then you’ll also remember that advertising on television or anywhere else for that matter was very different from what it has become. There were such few ads back then which made every single ad more of a popular jingle or movie clip stained in the minds of consumers. Everyone who watched JBC back in the 80’s can still remember and sing every ad jingle or tell the story of every ad made. Advertising then was more effective and memorable because they were so few and limited that they became a part of our lives.

In a normal 2018 day every Jamaican experiences approximately 5000 ads. This makes it so much harder for us to remember the contents of the ads and ultimately makes the job more challenging for marketers. If we think back on the evolution of advertising in Jamaica, we’ll understand how much things have changed. We started off with just a few media to share a few advertisers’ messages, but today we have so many options that have not only local but international advertisers fighting for our attention. It’s really amazing how much the world has gotten bigger or smaller depending on how you look at it.

To be fair when you think of it, it’s easy for us to experience over 5000 ads in a day. I challenge you to count!! Here’s a simple list of just a few platforms from which we consume ads in Jamaica:

  • Free To Air TV stations: TVJ, CVM & Love

  • Other TV options: cable, Apple TV, Satellite etc. providing 300 + TV channels

  • 30+ local radio stations

  • Alternative radio (satellite, internet, playlists etc.)

  • Newspapers: The Star, The Gleaner & The Observer (Western Mirror & North Coast Times)

  • Magazines

  • Outdoor Advertising such as Billboards, Digital Boards, Buses, banners, Wall Murals etc.

  • Packaging: labels on products

  • Mobile: SMS, Flash ads etc.

  • Internet: Banner ads, social media, content marketing videos, etc.

How many ads have you experienced today from all of those platforms above? More importantly, do you even remember them? For marketers, the big question is: how do you make your ad standout and more memorable than the others?


Email: keepgrowingja@gmail.com

Kingston, Jamaica

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