Special Exhibition, Konosuke Matsushita Museum: Konosuke Matsushita—Three Works That Convey Passion

Konosuke Matsushita Museum Konosuke Matsushita—Three Works That Convey Passion: Part 1: Words in Advertising

Dates: Saturday, July 13 to Saturday, August 24, 2019

Konosuke Matsushita devoted himself to communicating his philosophy and thoughts through business operations and his day-to-day management responsibilities. This special exhibition, broken into three parts, examines three aspects of Konosuke: his advertising policy, which incorporated ideas on how a nation should be; his full-throttle efforts to increase the use of home appliances; and his in-house communication methods, through which he spoke directly with his employees. As a result, the exhibitions draw out Konosuke's passions, and review their very essence. The first part introduces his advertising policy, which used the medium of newspapers to engage the public.

Konosuke's sense of advertising ideals and realities

"I think it can be said that advertising is quite difficult. But these difficult things make our lives richer. Advertising is not limited to products or to selling things, or even to being something needed for business. In addition to all of that, you need to think more about society. To think more about people. To think about how we live our lives. We can perhaps call this a sense of advertising. You need to generate adverts that include all this. That is why I believe that advertising is akin to philosophy."

Special lecture given to commemorate the fifth anniversary of Sendai Television, on October 1, 1967

Some of Konosuke's thoughts on advertising:

• You are duty-bound to quickly inform people that the product is good and is convenient.
It is foolish to advertise to make money.

• Advertising must never exceed factual data. You must never exaggerate.
You must be honest and forthright.

• Advertising also serves an educational role.
At times you must share an opinion with consumers, and may need to convince them.

• Executives should be responsible for advertising.
You must never leave it completely in the hands of an agency or even an internal department.

• In addition to our products, advertisements must communicate the company's philosophy on life and society.
Advertisements must convey the company's sincere desires and hopes.

• Advertising must not focus solely on technic.
The important thing is to share the thoughts of the creator.

• Advertising provides a balm to people's hearts, and elevates culture.
Do not get caught up in the new, and never forget its underlying principles.

The beginning of corporate communication

"This ad copy exudes Konosuke's confidence in the quality of the electric kotatsu heater achieved through a lot of efforts and his impassioned plea for people to use it. Konosuke also asserted in this copy that the product was absolutely safe to use, and that it was destined to be in common use throughout Japanese society. This was not simply an ad to make money. This was a form of corporate communication that conveyed Konosuke's thoughts.

...

At the time, ads simply sought to make money; there were no so-called corporate ads that expressed companies' policies. This ad ran in the Asahi Shimbun newspaper. It must have been incredibly expensive."

From Ryoichi Takeoka's 70 Years of Advertising History