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Digital Media and Advertising: ADV 1103

Research help for the course, "Digital Media and Advertising."

Why Use Trade Articles?

collage of trade publicationsTrade articles report on trends, new products, and techniques useful to people already in that trade, industry, or profession. The articles are short in length and can supply names, dates, facts and figures, along with quotes. Trade articles are written by people who work in or specialize in a particular trade, industry, or profession, but are not scholars.

When and Why You Should Use Trade Articles:

  • You need examples of best practices, solutions, and ideas tested by other companies 
  • You need to keep up with current trends, techniques, product reviews, or upcoming events
  • You need behind-the-scenes information about an industry and the companies in it

Remember: Articles in trade publications do not contain original research and are meant to be practical in nature. Their focus is on current trends and issues.

Find Trade Articles


Some of these databases also contain more than just trade journal articles, some scholarly, some popular, even some newswires. But their strength is in their coverage of the trades.

 TIP: Here are some keyword suggestions for searching for information about ad agencies in the above databases:
  • company / brand-name and agency: e.g. geico and agency
  • company / brand-name and campaign: e.g. whitewave foods and campaign
  • keywords, taglines from ad campaign:  e.g. "old spice guy", "real beauty" and dove, geico and "pulled over"
To save time, filter or narrow your search to "Trade Publications" or "Trade Journals" in your results list. 

Why Use Journal Articles?

Note taking and highlighting journal articles by Raul Pacheco-Vega (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) https://flic.kr/p/ywhfPTJournal articles -- also known as "scholarly articles," "peer-reviewed articles," or "academic articles" -- are sources that are written and reviewed by scholars; this means the information is approved by other experts before publication.

When and Why You Should Use Journal Articles:

  • You need information that is based on research and expertise
  • You need in-depth analysis of a topic or a single case study explored in-depth
  • You need recent scholarly conversations about a topic
  • You need suggestions for additional sources (tip: look in the bibliography)
  • You need sources that are peer-reviewed

Remember: Journal articles can sometimes feel dense or intense. Look for visual cues (headings, sections, bullets, charts/graphs) within articles to help guide you to relevant information. Need help? Check out this Anatomy of a Scholarly Article tutorial.

Find Scholarly Journal Articles

 TIP: To save time, filter or narrow your search to "Scholarly (Peer Reviewed) Journals" or "Academic Journals" in your results list.