Today at the Storytime we are going to have a special talk for the Admen! Squeeze in tight so everybody can fit, there’s room for everyone at Aunt Mary’s!
Guys, I understand you are under a lot of pressure. Your creations have the ability to last forever now thanks to the internet and I’m betting your clients are asking the impossible from you. I’m sure they want an iconic campaign that reaches every target market and spans different media all while sticking to a tight budget. I’m guessing you got to hear all about your client’s neighbor’s nephew who is just a wiz with that social media stuff.
I really feel for you. It’s hard. But I wanted to give one small, gentle piece of advice from someone who loves advertising:
STOP FEATURING JACKASSES IN YOUR ADS!
Yes, I get it, assholes are really in vogue right now. We might even we living in the golden age of the Jerk-Almighty. But here’s the thing: nobody wants to buy stuff from a jackass.
Currently the biggest knuckleheads in my book are the folks in the campaign for Milky Way candy bars. These commercials feature workers accomplishing terrible results at their jobs (misspelled tattoos, poorly painted street markings, hair burnt off client’s head) and when called on their poor work retort with an eye roll and snotty “Sorry… I was eating a Milky Way” not unlike a spoiled valley girl who was caught in her parents liquor cabinet.
My best guess is they were trying to edge in on Snickers brilliant “You’re Not You When You’re Hungry” campaign, but just not hitting the mark. The characters are rude and dismissive and truthfully not anyone I would want associated with my brand. I suppose a case could be made that the candy bars are so on point your forget about everything else…but I’m not buying it.
What’s more, none of these incidents are particularly creative. Misspelled tattoos happen and the “No Regerts” tattoo was featured in the movie “We’re the Millers.” Especially eyebrow raising is the cruise ship scenario which hits a little too close to the 2012 crash of the Costa Concordia in Italy which resulted in the death of 32 people. Not exactly a gold mine of hilarious content.
We’ve talked about the choice of weird spokespeople before in the Liberty Mutual ads, making me wonder if the anti-hero is a trend with some legs.
But, Aunt Mary must give credit when due, I have to admit I find the print ads for this campaign creative and attractive, even though the sentiment is the same. Perhaps the stylized cartoon imagery makes it a little less dismissive? hmm…