Journalism and Mass Communications, College of


Date of this Version

Spring 5-2012

Document Type



A THESIS Presented to the Faculty of The Graduate College at the University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of Requirements For the Degree of Master of Arts, Major: Journalism and Mass Communications, Under the Supervision of Professor Phyllis Larsen. Lincoln, Nebraska: May 2012

Copyright (c) 2012 Bridgid L. Agosta


The purpose of this study was to use a content analysis to compare retail trade advertisements made by top U.S. consumer packaged goods (CPG) manufacturers during the December 2007–June 2009 recession. This study extended Lord’s (1987) research that focused on consumer advertising to understand retail trade advertisements. This study analyzed 195 advertisements of U.S. CPG manufacturers in a nationally distributed U.S. retail trade print publication, Supermarket News. The results could indicate that retail trade print advertisements may help to enhance CPG manufacturers’ reputations among their trading partners. Specifically, findings from this research may indicate that because General Mills and Unilever had frequent ads that addressed the key long-term performance measures and industry issues, each company was able to move up in the Cannondale PoweRankings in 2010.

Adviser: Phyllis Larsen