by Glen Buck
Glen Buck was an owner, author and marketer operating the Gardner-Glen Buck Company, an advertising agency operating out of New York, Chicago and St. Louis. He was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and rose from being the advertising manager at Olds Motor Works to directing advertising at the Ford Motor Company. He also assisted the government with World War I promotional efforts. His company, the Gardner-Glen Buck Company, helped to advertise everything including office supplies, hosiery and frankfurter rolls to the public. Buck’s work and writings help to illustrate the marketing style and mindset of advertising during the turn of the century. Although some of the writings are nearly a century old, they still hold true today: “America wastes as much money in stupid advertising as she does in bad politics. Success in advertising is dearly bought if it depends upon extravagant expenditures rather than skillful craftsmanship.” This work, along with Buck’s other works, What’s the Matter With Advertising? and The Cost of Confusion, explores the idea of good advertising, rather than the ethics of “skillful” manipulation of the public, though Buck did tread the subject in his 1930 work, American Advertising Must Mend Its Ethics.