Ayer, Francis Wayland

Ayer, Francis Wayland

(1848–1923) advertising agent; born in Lee, Mass. He founded the Philadelphia advertising firm N. W. Ayer & Son (1869) and transformed the previously unsavory occupation of advertising into a respected profession. His pioneering advocacy of advertisers' interests, use of market research, and development of slogans and trademarks became industry practice; his American Newspaper Annual and Directory became a standard reference work. He was also an internationally known dairy stock breeder.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.