We came across this vintage print ad for the Peace Corps yesterday at the Long Beach Antique Market. It was in a 1968 issue of Life magazine—seven years after the creation of the program—and I found it impressive and intriguing, both from the perspective of someone in the advertising business and as an returning Peace Corps Volunteer myself.
From a marketing perspective, it’s got the simple, elegant visual hook of the text and glass, playing with the magnified perspective the rounded glass provides and its tone compels the audience with an emotional hook. It says “Hey, this isn’t for everyone, but if this positive messaging appeals to you, maybe it is for you,” without quite stepping over the line of condescension.
And coming at it as a former volunteer, it’s just nice—in an admittedly romanticized way—to see the positivity that I honestly do feel remains at the root of the program to this day worn on the agency’s sleeve and touted so loudly early on.
Plus how awesome that the call to action was to write a letter…to street address-free government agency.
You have to love old school social media.
Paired TV spot below. The campaign was done in partnership with the Ad Council. If anyone knows anything else about it, please do contact us; we’d love to know more.