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Certificate in Advertising Online Course

Learn More About The Advertising Industry

Learn More About The Advertising Industry

Good advertising is advertising which sells the product! Advertising which looks beautiful and reads well may indeed sell the product but then again, it may fail to do so if other things in the marketing mix are not equal.

This course should be of interest to a wide range of business people, especially those for whom advertising is but a single facet of their responsibilities. It is meant to give a useful working background to help people to deal more effectively with advertising agencies, and also to 'do their own advertising.

Course Fast Facts:

  1. Learn the fundamentals of Advertising
  2. Comprehensive 9 module Certificate in Advertising Online Course
  3. Study along with simple instructions & demonstrations
  4. Written and developed by leading Advertising experts
  5. Receive one-on-one online help & support
  6. Unlimited, lifetime access to online course
  7. Certificate of completion awarded with passing score for the online assessment
  8. Study at your own pace with no rigid class timetables, 24/7 from any computer or smart device

Course Delivery

Courses are accessed online by any device including PC, tablet or Smart Phone. Upon enrolment an automated welcome email will be sent to you (please check your junk email inbox if not received as this is an automated email), in order for you to access your online course, which is Available 24/7 on any computer or smart mobile device. 

Recognition & Accreditation

All students who complete this course, receive a certificate of completion with a passing score (for the online assessment) and will be issued a certificate via email.

MODULE 1 : Introduction to advertising

Types of Advertising

  • National Consumer Product 
  • Retail 
  • Dealer or Cooperative 
  • Trade, Professional and Industrial 
  • Corporate or Institutional 
  • Classified 
  • Primary 
  • Recruitment 
  • Financial 

Reasons for Advertising

  • Announcing the launch of a new product or service
  • Maintaining sales
  • Improving the corporate image
  • Announcing a change in product or packaging
  • Approaching a new market
  • Announcing price changes
  • Announcing a special offer
  • Reversing falling sales
  • Informing the public of new developments
  • Regulating production
  • Educating the public
  • Reinforcing a purchase already made
  • Announcing changes of dealers and stockists

Advertising and the Marketing Mix

  • The Marketing Mix tells us that in selling any product we must consider:

What Advertising Cannot Do

  • Advertising cannot sell a poor product/service
  • Advertising cannot sell immediately
  • Advertising cannot sell if distribution is poor
  • Advertising must be supported by personal selling
  • Advertising must be supported by packaging and point of sale material
  • Advertising cannot sell a poorly priced product 

Factors Affecting a Buying Decision

  • The advertising idea
  • Media used
  • Frequency of exposure
  • Superiority over competition
  • Time of exposure


MODULE 2 : Advertising for the Small Business

What is Good Advertising?

  • Advertising that sells the product
  • Attention 
  • Interest
  • Desire 
  • Product recall
  • Brand loyalty

What Makes a Good Advertisement?

  • Impact
  • Specific benefit to the reader
  • Target reader’s needs
  • Clear message
  • Credibility
  • Distinctiveness
  • Reflects product and company name clearly

Planning A Good Advertisement

  • Main consumer benefit
  • The reason why
  • Subsidiary claims
  • Target market
  • Brand image
  • Tone of voice 

Prior to Advertising

  • R - Research 
  • A - Analyse 
  • P - Plan 
  • I – Implement
  • E - Evaluate 
  • R - Revise 

There are 2 main components of the most successful advertisements

  • Simplicity of layout and copy
  • Realism

Advertising People at Work

  • Advertising department
  • In-house agency
  • 3 main functions in every agency

Advertising Objectives

  • Will cover such points as:
  • Level of brand awareness in certain areas of the market 
  • Attitude of target market to product 
  • Degree of brand loyalty achieved
  • Actual volume of sales 
  • A certain share of the market 
  • Reaching a certain segment of the population 

The Agency

  • Every agency must first plan the advertising
  • An advertising brief is prepared giving detail of:
  • Product
  • Target market

MODULE 3 : Media


  • Newspapers
  • Magazines
  • Freebies
  • Yellow Pages
  • Trade and Technical Press
  • Television
  • TV Production
  • Cinema
  • Radio - advantages
  • Radio - disadvantages
  • Jingles
  • Radio spot costing
  • ITC regulations

Outdoor Advertising

  • Posters
  • Advantages
  • Disadvantages
  • Discuss


MODULE 4 : Costs

Who Pays for Advertising?

  • 90% of advertising appropriation is made through agencies
  • Accredited advertising agencies are paid by the media, not advertisers
  • They receive commission - 16.5% on gross cost of space or time bought
  • This is charged to the advertiser at the usual price
  • Advertising carrying a commission is known as above-the-line advertising
  • Below-the-line advertising, does not carry a commission
  • It covers point-of-sale display items, brochures, direct mail
  • Agencies charge for copy, artwork, radio, TV/film production, market research, photography as well as commission
  • Budgeting & Costing
  • Decide if you need to advertise at all
  • If employing an agency, ensure it is agreed, in writing, exactly what you pay for
  • How will You Budget?
  • Potential advertisers should ask the following questions
  • They cover 4 ways of looking at the situation:
  • Launching Advertising
  • Corporate advertising
  • Costs
  • Press and magazine advertising
  • Television
  • Radio
  • Cinema
  • Outdoor advertising

Where to Advertise

  • Evaluating the media plan
  • Frequency
  • Cover and reach
  • Dominance
  • Impact
  • Availability
  • Creative suitability
  • Proven effectiveness
  • Cost per thousand
  • Circulation
  • Placing the Ad
  • Price and positioning
  • Distribution
  • Target market
  • When Advertising is Worth the Cost – and

When It Isn’t

  • Elements in the marketing mix may have more effect on your turnover

MODULE 5 : Putting the Advertisement Together


  • Headlines
  • Body copy
  • Design
  • Layout
  • Headline
  • Body copy
  • Logos and taglines
  • Visuals – photographs or illustrations
  • Maps
  • Charts
  • Graphics
  • Rules

Putting the Ad Together

  • The first visual stage is to produce scamps or roughs
  • These are rough visuals that suggest how the concept and copy could be used
  • A finished rough is the next stage
  • Finished artwork must be approved by client, beforehand
  • Type mark-up specifying type face and sizes is made, text is correctly cast up
  • Production Department orders typesetting from mark-up and bromides from artwork
  • After paste-up advertisement goes to printer with type mark-up and photographs
  • It is proofed - proofs are submitted to client for final approval
  • Corrections can be made at this stage


  • Copy and photography are given to repro house in the form of a dummy
  • Production man must understand that publications chosen offer the right facilities
  • Copy dates differs from publication to publication
  • Cancellation dates also vary
  • Media buyers must be aware of all these facts
  • They should also know the current availability

Press Advertising – What the Repro House

  • Needs
  • Positives/negatives/bromides or transparencies
  • Type mark-up quoting size of page and typeface needed
  • Paper quality
  • Details of bleeds
  • If advertisement will be full colour, 1 or 2 colours, black/white
  • Time schedule


  • Repro house will supply dyelines, machine proofs or chromalins
  • These should be carefully proof read
  • Dyelines are black-and-white proofs which look not unlike Photostats
  • They are supplied for approval of layout and copy before repro house undertakes colour separation
  • Machine Proofs are best means of checking accuracy of colour - only prepared for vast runs
  • Chromalins give cheaper attractive impressions of how the finished full colour ad will look
  • They are produced chemically from litho positives

Brochures, Leaflets, Mail Shots

  • A printing company will require the following information:
  • Method of printing you require
  • Quality of paper
  • Type size and style
  • Quantity and run-on price
  • Number of colours
  • Binding
  • Any insertion into envelopes, wrappers etc.
  • Details of illustrations as given for advertisements
  • Typography
  • There should not be more than 2 different typefaces in an advert
  • Several sizes of them are acceptable
  • Using a variety makes for a cluttered busy layout
  • Printing Processes
  • Hand Composition/Letterpress/Monotype
  • Typewriter Composition/Word Processing/Desk Top Publishing
  • Photocomposing
  • Laser, Electronic and Computer Composing
  • Offset Lithography
  • Photogravure
  • Flexographic Printing
  • Silk Screen Process


MODULE 6 : The Agency

Boutique Agency

  • Offer specialist creative or designer services to bigger agencies or direct to clients
  • Their charges are often considerably less than mainstream agencies
  • They usually concentrate on ‘below-the-line’ work
  • They may edit house journals, script and photograph audiovisual presentations, prepare adverts for all media
  • Much of their work comes from the small businessman

Can You do Without An Agency?

  • Many large advertisers do without advertising agencies
  • They plan and prepare their own advertisements and buy media space themselves
  • They do not save the full commission on which an agency operates
  • Use of such services saves the smaller advertiser money
  • Leaves him in greater control
  • In more direct contact with people who actually produce the work
  • Among services advertising agencies themselves ‘farm out’ to specialists are:
  • Market Research
  • Typesetting
  • Finished Art and Retouching
  • Exhibition Stand Design
  • Working Model Building
  • Packaging Design
  • Website Design
  • Point of Purchase Material Design
  • Specialized Copywriting Or Scriptwriting
  • Writing Press Releases
  • TV and Cinema, Film Production
  • Audiovisual and Video Services
  • Radio
  • Commercial Production
  • Direct mail and its Distribution
  • Photography
  • Translating
  • Outdoor Advertising
  • Colour Reproduction


  • If you do not want to place media advertising through an accredited agency, your options are:
  • The small agency
  • Going it alone with Freelance Services
  • Help from newspapers and magazines
  • D I Y Advertising

Printer or Repro House

  • The 3 main factors to consider are:
  • Cost
  • Service
  • Quality

Desktop Publishing

  • Excellent way to set up new ideas
  • Can be done very inexpensively
  • Advantage here is speed rather than economy
  • Standard achieved is what is known as ‘commercially acceptable’
  • Not always 100% correct - type size and density may have been varied by the computer

Database Mailers

  • Organise customer lists into sub-headings like Regular Customers, Prospects, Comeback and Forget.
  • You can feed in to purchased lists extra information such as:
  • What is purchased
  • How much is spent
  • When the account was settled
  • Any data you gain from coupon response


MODULE 7 :  Types of Advertising

‘Below the Line’ Advertising

  • Direct mail letters
  • Sports promotions
  • Competitions
  • Exhibitions
  • Demonstrations
  • Product tags
  • Air banners
  • Hot air balloons
  • Beer mats
  • T-shirts
  • Ashtrays
  • Key rings
  • Book matches
  • Calendars
  • Bumper stickers

Advantages of Direct Mail

  • You can check on its success
  • It works quickly
  • Gives high accuracy in choosing your target market
  • You can time it precisely to reach potential clients on almost the very day you want to reach them
  • You can mail anything from a brief A5 letter to a registered packet

Disadvantages of Direct Mail

  • Public see unsolicited mail as ‘junk mail’, may throw it away unread
  • This can be countered by presenting an interesting image
  • Its usefulness is dependent on the strength of the mailing list

Versatility of Direct Mail

  • Used to post calendars, diaries, quartz clocks, pens with your name to customers/prospects
  • Can supply technical information on new developments
  • Can inform customers about a new service through brochures, or in-house magazines
  • Can make special offers and personally-couched appeals to likely prospects
  • Can pinpoint new or ‘lost’ customers or appeal to any dealer/stockist for any reason

Advice on Direct Mail

  • All direct mail shots should have class, show respect for recipient
  • They should be interesting, stimulating, creative
  • They should offer a benefit
  • Recipient should be given a simple way to respond to that benefit
  • Consider sending simply a personalised letter

Exhibitions, Demonstrations & Shows

  • For prestige purposes
  • To demonstrate new products and services
  • To keep up with the competition
  • To make themselves known potential consumers, agents and distributors

Sales Promotions

  • Customer promotions
  • Trade promotions
  • Sales-force promotions

Points-of-Purchase Material

  • Window stickers and banners
  • Display cut-outs (often quite sophisticated)
  • Check-out counter display boxes
  • Store fixtures such as dump bins, free-standing show cases, gondola ends
  • Banners, streamers, card shelf takers, etc.


MODULE 8 : Public Relations

What are Public Relations?

  • An activity that builds goodwill, improves communications between an organisation and its ‘publics’
  • In advertising you pay for space used, and to have it used exactly as you wish
  • In public relations you do not pay the publication to use the material
  • You have no guarantee that it will be used at all
  • It may be changed, garbled, or used in any way the editor sees fit
  • Being printed as editorial, it has the advantage of increased credibility

What does Public Relations Include?

  • Effective communication
  • External public relations
  • Internal public relations
  • Your corporate identity
  • Your stationery
  • Your logo
  • Your vehicles
  • Your staff: uniforms, their efficiency, their attitudes
  • Your advertising
  • Your products and/or services
  • Your literature: brochures, leaflets, packaging, etc., and your public relations campaigns
  • Communication through the media
  • Press releases
  • Brochures, leaflets, letters
  • Speeches
  • Annual reports
  • Films, videos, audio-visual presentations
  • In-house magazines and newsletters
  • Invitations
  • Personalised letters
  • Direct mail shots
  • Public speaking
  • Special events
  • Organising
  • Publicity
  • Social responsibility
  • Disaster tactics

Writing a Press Release

  • Put the most important point FIRST
  • Remember your ‘5 W’s and ‘1 H’: who, what, when, where, why, how
  • Keep your English simple
  • Keep away from the passive voice and hanging participles
  • Keep it short, preferably not exceeding 200 words
  • Always date a press release
  • Photographs always help


MODULE 9 : Controls

Controls Over Advertising
Legal Provisions

  • Misrepresentation Act (1967) and Trade Descriptions Act (1968) - protect buyers from misleading statements
  • Copyright Designs and Patents Act (1988) and Trade Marks Act (1994) - protects registered users of names and marks
  • International copyright agreements also protect advertising itself
  • Not only copy, but designs, layouts and TV and radio commercials are copyright-protected
  • Weights and Measures Act (1985) assures the content, weight, etc. of a product is what it purports to be
  • The Fair Trading Act (1973) protects customers and ensures ethical business practice
  • Obscene Publications Act (1959) and Indecent Displays (Control) Act (1981) cover publication/display of anything indecent, obscene, offensive
  • Charities Act (1992) controls all charitable appeals and advertising - must include a registration number
  • Food Safety Act (1990), Medicines Act (1968), Medicines Regulations (1978 & 1994), Cosmetic Products (Safety) Regulations (1996) govern content, labelling, marketing of a wide range of consumer products
  • Betting, Gaming and Lotteries Act (1963) which covers lotteries, competitions

Self-Imposed Control

  • Objectives of the Advertising Standards Authority Continually to improve the standard of advertising
  • To discourage dishonest, undesirable practices in advertising and related fields

Other External Controls

  • Office of Communications (Ofcom)
  • Newspaper Publishers Association (NPA

Trademarks & Registration

  • If starting to manufacture a product, you must be aware of the significance of a trademark
  • It can consist of your name or firm’s name, initials, or of any design associated with it
  • A trademark should be registered to prevent it being used by others
  • The Patent Office gives the following information about marks that may be registered:
  • Name of person or film printed in a distinctive manner
  • Written signature
  • Distinctive device, brand or label
  • Invented word
  • Any word provided it has no reference to character or quality of goods
  • Is not a geographical name or surname
  • Your trademark should be distinctive and memorable, yet simple
  • It should be attractive, easily understood by everyone
  • The name should be easy to pronounce and spell

Entry requirements

Students must have basic literacy and numeracy skills.

Open entry

Previous schooling and academic achievements are not required for entry into this course.

Computer requirements

Students will need access to a computer and the internet.

Minimum specifications for the computer are:


  • Microsoft Windows XP, or later
  • Modern and up to date Browser (Internet Explorer 8 or later, Firefox, Chrome, Safari)


  • OSX/iOS 6 or later
  • Modern and up to date Browser (Firefox, Chrome, Safari)

All systems

  • Internet bandwidth of 1Mb or faster
  • Flash player or a browser with HTML5 video capabilities(Currently Internet Explorer 9, Firefox, Chrome, Safari)

Students will also need access the following applications:

  • Adobe Acrobat Reader 
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Course Summary

Course ID No.: 009OAADQ
Delivery Mode: Online
Course Access: Unlimited Lifetime Access
Tutor Support: Yes
Assessments: Yes
Qualification: Certificate of Completion