How Advertisers Used Pictorial Maps To Gain The Trust Of Consumers

People trust maps more than other tools used in conveying information. This is the reason why advertisers prefer pictorial maps because they have a greater presumption of credibility than other forms of communication. Advertisers want credibility and they gravitate towards the medium of cartography.

People are more naturally inclined to believe what they see in maps making them the most effective tools of persuasion. The unique power of maps has placed them in the center of many propaganda operations, morality movements and political debates. Maps can persuade people to change their plans.

According to P.J. Mode, a retired lawyer and collector of maps, almost every child can recollect the parents unfolding a paper road map when driving to a certain destination they have never been before. From watching the family using maps, the child learns to trust and depend on maps to get from point A to point B.

From the 800 persuasive maps that can be seen online, more than a hundred represent some form of advertising. An example of a beautiful map from the Cornell’s University Library digital collections is one of New York City area. It was used on an 1897 ad for the largest dealers in horses in world.

Based on Mode’s research, a British shipping company ripped off a logo of 1901 Pan American exposition in Buffalo, New York to use as cover for a 1912 promotional brochure. Even if they are violating someone else’s copyright, the brochure was indeed beautiful. The logo was used on everything from the Pan American Exposition but 10 years later, the image was stolen by Lamport & Holt Line for their advertising.

Mode loves to research the stories behind the pictorial maps in his collection. He does the research through the internet that provides a vast amount of information readily a hand. Mode is encouraged by his curiosity to do some extra work.

Colors, style and passion are used in the creation of pictorial maps for a campus, facility or community. The map illustrator’s pen and creative color palette adds color and warmth to the hand-drawn illustrated maps. The map illustration can be a unique tool for marketing and promotions.


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