Tuesday, February 2, 2010

TV's and Automobiles

Post World War II a seismic shift within the American economy was taking hold. Two innovations forced this shift from what we knew as the industrial economy to a new vibrant economy based on the consumer. Televisions and automobiles made it possible for consumers (a new term at the time for the American population) to live a life of prosperity coupled with convenience.

The growth of the personal television took strength away from the manufacturers and placed the power in the hands of the Madison Avenue's of the world focusing on advertising and marketing products to consumers.

The implications of the automobile led to shifts in geography as suburbs in new parts the country became widely populated as convenient, cheap, and viable places to live. The quality of life for American's was booming unlike ever before. The television created a desire to buy goods and the automobile led to a means of transportation to buy those goods, thus the rise of malls and shopping centers.

Now it seems like the foundations of these two great innovations have peaked along with the economy they built. Cars are not as cheap as they once were and neither are the products we see on television. What future innovations and themes will spark the next growth phase in the American economy, as cars and TVs once achieved in the post WWII period?