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Archive for the ‘satire’ Category

The insult continuum

There are many elements to making a good commercial, but none are as important as insulting the consumer in just the right fashion. To the untrained eye it may seem as though ads belittle, insult, and put down consumers without rhyme or reason, but in reality, there is a strict set of protocols to be followed.

Men: Of course, men are always fair game. You can insult men as much as you want under any circumstance. This is especially true of fathers. Nothing is quite as stupid as fathers.

Women: This is far trickier. Mothers can be insulted by teens, but never by their husbands. One woman can insult another, providing the woman being insulted is not the one buying the advertised product.

Teens: A teenage girl will always show up a teenage boy, but both can make fools of their parents.

Age: The older they get, the funnier and more idiotic they get, isn’t that right? Pretty well any person over the age of 40 is fair game, but the male/female standard still holds: an older woman can only be put down by another woman, but anyone can make fun of the older man.

It’s a pretty simple process, and most ad agencies seem to understand the principle quite well. So join the fun — make fun of an old guy today (for the good of your product, of course).

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Categories: boomer advertising, satire

• Another example of gorilla advertising

Following a decline in public perception of the Cadbury brand during the first part of 2007, the UK company bypassed its main agency, Publicis, in favour of the Fallon agency to promote its Dairy Milk product. The result was this video, and a noticeable improvement in public perception, according to the polling company, YouGuv.

On YouTube, the video received 500,000 hits the first week.

But note — the spot was also widely aired on TV and in movie theatres.

Note too — the spot also tells you what the ad is for.

Best of all, however — it’s just plain fun.

Categories: satire

• New Prius ads say, “Enough with nature, already!”

Industrial air pollution

Prius believes we need more of these. Plus love.

Considering that Prius has positioned itself as a “green” vehicle, friendly to nature and a favoured son (daughter?) of the goddess Gaia, it’s puzzling that their new ads should be so antagonistic towards nature.

The new campaign, created by Saatchi & Saatchi, Toronto, features a Prius driving around while awe-struck bystanders whistle the venerable Burt Bacharach and Hal David song, “What the World Needs Now.” Read more…

• A note…a note…to advertisers…advertisers…from consumers…from consumers…consumers

Consumers respond to multiple-person-repetition ads

We the consumers…
We the consumers…
We the consumers…

would like to tell advertisers…
would like to tell advertisers…
tell advertisers…

that we’re sick …
we’re sick…
sick… Read more…

Categories: campaign analysis, satire

• What every agency needs: the steam punk Mega-Blaster Client Attitude Adjuster Ray

Powered by steam punk, driven by desparation

Powered by steam, driven by despair

Agencies now employ a vast number of technologically-advanced tools to help get their work done. With the aid of computers they can create stunning 3-D graphics that would have been impossible twenty years ago, conduct and analyse consumer surveys with the touch of a button, and quickly re-dub existing commercials into hilarious spoofs for the Christmas party. But what about all those day-to-day problems that come up for which modern technology appears to have no solution? No computer program can make a troublesome client more compliant or silence the guy from creative who plugs the same stupid idea over and over again. Read more…

Categories: satire

• The hidden truth behind consultants

If youre not part of the solution -- theres good money in prolonging the problem

A word of warning about consultants: a great many of them are clinically insane.

Not all, of course. Many of them are merely idiots.

But the big ones, the ones that make the big bucks — they’re generally completely loopy.

It’s inevitable, really. Who’s going to put out tens of thousands of dollars in return for sane, reasonable ideas?

Consider the great Toronto Transit Commission map debacle of 1992. Read more…

Categories: communications, satire

• Adventures in advertising: This is a recording

I should come clean and admit that this post is appearing in both Ad Nauseam and Editor’s Sidebar since it deals with both advertising and editing. 

Hey, why waste a good post?



Many years ago, I worked at a small start-up magazine. The owner and publisher, Peter, was adamant about the need for advertisers if we wanted to grow our business.   

Of course, back then we didn’t actually say, “grow our business.” We might “increase our business,” or our business might grow. But the idea of “growing” a business hadn’t made its way into the vernacular yet. However, if it had, Peter would have said it. I’ve never liked the expression, although I’m hard pressed to explain why. You “grow” corn. You “grow” turnips. But damn it, you don’t “grow the farm.” Likewise, your children “grow,” but you don’t “grow your children.” Read more…