“Advertisement” vs “Commercial”

(What Is The Difference?)

Absinthe - GiveMeSomeEnglish!!!

| GiveMeSomeEnglish!!!e have already gone over, in a previous post, the the differences and similarities between the word & abbreviations:  “Ad” vs “Advert” vs “Advertisement”.  Today we will be going over differences & similarities between the words:  “Advertisement” vs “Commercial”.

| GiveMeSomeEnglish!!!These two words are commonly thought to mean, essentially, the same thing.  And that may be true in the way that they are commonly used — but there IS a difference in meaning.  And you should know what that is…  So you won’t be stuck with “common” intelligence…  (Which in this day and age, would just be horrible!…  I can only imagine)  😆

So What Is The Difference?

| GiveMeSomeEnglish!!!asically — ALL Commercials are Advertisements.  But not all Advertisements are Commercials.  This is because — like so many other words in The English Language which are commonly thought to mean the same thing — one is actually a specific type of the other.

| GiveMeSomeEnglish!!!he word Advertisement comes from “Advertir” = “To Inform;  To Warn”.  And the root-word of Commercial is “Commerce” = “The buying and selling of goods”.  So a Commercial is a type of Advertisement that is specifically used for the sake of “Selling”.

| GiveMeSomeEnglish!!!here-as an Advertisement — as we commonly use the word — does not have to be for the sake of selling.  It can simply be to inform, or for the sake of trying to interest you in something which does not involve the selling of goods and/or services.


| GiveMeSomeEnglish!!!


Here, They May Be Trying To “Sell” You On An Idea…  But There Is No Exchange Of Goods


Advertisement - GiveMeSomeEnglish!!!


Here, They Are Informing You About…  Something.  But The Purpose Is To Try To Sell You…

A Car Kit?

Notice!  —  Even though it would be grammatically correct to refer to the type of “Advertisement” above as a “Commercial” — in common usage — we only use the term “Commercial” when it is on TV, or Radio.  So even though the above “Ad” was in a magazine — and by definition it is a “Commercial” because it is trying to sell you something…  In common usage, we would still call it an “Advertisement”.  But this is also NOT grammatically incorrect!  Because remember — A “Commercial” is a specific TYPE of “Advertisement”…  not the other way around.  😎

“Advertisement” vs “Commerical”


  • If It Is On TV Or The Radio — And It Is Selling Something — We Use:  “Commercial”
  • If It Is On TV, Or The Radio — And It Is Simply Providing Information (NOT Selling A Product Or Service) — We Use:  “Advertisement”
  • If It Is In A Magazine, Newspaper, Poster, Flier, Or Somewhere On The Internet — Whether It Is Selling Something Or Not — We Use:  “Advertisement”

Some Advertisements Act As Both

(They Give Valuable Information About Something That You Should Buy [if you need it] Because It Will Improve Your Life [if you buy it])

This Video Provides Valuable Information To Those Who Need To Take The TOEFL Exam — But Also Provides A Solution Which Is A Service That I Sell.  Therefore It Fits The Definition Of Both “Commercial” AND “Advertisement”

And That’s That!…

Have An Excellent Day!


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