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GRAFFITI IN BUSINESS & ADVERTISING

Graffiti is one of the fastest-growing trends in the outdoor advertising scene.


Graffiti is one of the fastest-growing trends in the outdoor advertising scene. It’s also one of the most effective. Even though it has been used for decades as a means of expression, its uses have become much more controversial over the years.

It is an integral component of the street culture of cities worldwide, from London to Los Angeles, and a fantastic example of how our culture interacts with each other daily and the unexpected. Graffiti is the physical representation of social media usage. While advertising using graffiti may seem like an unusual way of promoting your business, it’s a great way to get your message out.

Traditional methods such as flyers, billboards, and TV adverts have long been considered outdated. Graffiti is arguably one of the best forms of non-traditional advertising. Our minds have become accustomed to ignoring the marketing ads that we see around the cities. Therefore, the vibrant colours and beautiful art pieces displayed on concrete that we see during our way to work will get our attention as no other ad has done before.

One of the most popular uses of graffiti art in the business world is a social media campaign. As social media platforms become more popular, businesses are realising that their presence online can directly impact their business. Hence, many companies have started to utilise social media to get the word out about their offerings.

Since graffiti became an effective way to catch people’s attention, big corporations realised its potential for advertising. They exploited it using campaigning ads – clothing brands, marketing companies, McDonald’s, Coca-Cola, UNICEF, and even political campaigns. Last July, Alexander McQueen launched a clothing range featuring graffiti that included a pair of socks selling for £65.

Famous brands using graffiti have made this art trendy and well-accepted. With that, areas known for their graffiti art started attracting more people. Rough areas are known for illicit drug activities and graffiti in their walls - these soon became ‘the popular places to be.’ Hackney, in London, is currently one of the most popular places to live and hang out among hipsters - Its alternative feel, popular bars, and lively nightlife bring people from all over the city. Street art and gentrification completely turned this area around; as 20 years ago, it was a place you would not want to be alone at night. Nowadays, it is the complete opposite. From 2011 to 2021, this Borough has seen a 105 percent increase in house prices.

It is fair to say that graffiti is now a well-accepted artform, and we have businesses and advertising campaigns to thank for that. However, what started as a rebellious act of protest, is now making the rich richer through campaigning. Using graffiti in advertising goes against counter-culture identity to represent the rich through advertising. I wonder if society is forgetting the original purpose of this art. The use of graffiti has been incredibly empowering for the working class. With big corporations profiting from it, is this art losing the purpose it was made for or is it evolving?




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