Profile America: First TV Ad

First TV AD_Bulova Watches_1941-YouTube


America runs on Bulova time.” That declaration was the entire audio portion of the first advertisement appearing on a commercial television station. The rather subdued ad was broadcast on New York station WBNT this month in 1941, the first TV ad with the sanction of the Federal Communications Commission. The 10-second spot appeared in a Brooklyn Dodgers game against the Philadelphia Phillies. Consisting of nothing more than the image of a ticking clock, the ad cost Bulova just $9. TV commercials have grown vastly more sophisticated since the 1941 experiment.

YouTube: Dave Birss

Creating new commercials contributes to the $60 billion in annual revenue earned by the nation’s 14,000 video and motion picture production outlets.

You can find more facts about America from the U.S. Census Bureau online here.

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