God of Thunder and Rock'n'Roll (archmage) wrote,
God of Thunder and Rock'n'Roll
archmage

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Advertising And Why It Sucks

Yeah, today we go off on the Marketing Department. I'd love to start this out by saying something like "Are Americans REALLY This Stupid?"...but we all know I believe they are.

Driving in the car this morning, radio on, skimming through the stations, just like most mornings, trying to find some actual music (usually a lost cause), or at least a morning radio crew that is somewhat above the intellectual capacity of babboons. I'm hearing the various snippets and commercials, and I'm struck (again) by how pathetic these commercials are, and how little thery actually say. Examples, you say? Gladly:
~ commercial starts out like a radio doctor call-in program, customer describes not being able to stop rhyming everything he says, doctor tries to get him to stop, guy is unable, doctor expresses his inability to help, but says he has some happy news, he "just saved money with So-And-So Auto Insurance"...quick tagline for the company, and the commercial ends

~ commercial starts out with announcer talking up a car manufacturer's coming sale, and 'turns' to talk to someone about it, who turns out to be a football coach, who spends the time whining about how he's not good anymore; announcer tries to cheer him up by pointing out the deals.

~ smooth-voiced announcer starts out talking about the tough features of the Komodo Dragon, and then tells you that if you put it on a highway during rush hour, you'd wonder how these 'scary' creatures ever survived the Ice Age...however, such-and-such new car handles the road fine!
Now, I'm not a total idiot, I know in some cases where they are going with the commercial, but that doesn't make it any less inane.

Maybe I'm from some other planet or something, but shouldn't an advertisement of a product actually advertise the PRODUCT? In their race to make cooler and more attention-grabbing commercials, the ad execs seem to have forgotten the actual products...another case of going for the award, not for the quality. So much work goes into these 30-second epics these days...which says a lot about our society and what we find important.

What makes this worse is that while the citizen is partially at fault, it's not exclusively his fault. By being the sad ultra-consumers that they are, people just support those commercials by buying the products...but it's those ad execs that seem to think that the commercials are responsible for it. To an extent they're right: by getting those brand names, etc., in the public eye, they are more likely to be bought. But they are competeing with each other as much as they are with the other brands, which is what makes these things get so gargantuan.

Look at something like the Super Bowl. We'll bypass my ranting about professional sports for the moment...have you seen the figures on what ad space during this one event costs? Just as one example, Proctor & Gamble Company is going to put a commercial for an unspecified brand in the 2K4 Super Bowl, and the 30-second clip will cost them $2.4 million dollars. Two and a half MILLION for 30 seconds of time that most people will be out of the room getting another beer and more chips. Two and a half MILLION DOLLARS that could be going, instead, towards helping people, raising standards, improving the world.

And it only gets worse...if I go get a new t-shirt or a pair of jeans, call me crazy, but I want something that looks good and fits well and is comfortable. What I don't care about getting is an overpriced sweatshirt whose only decoration is to advertise the designer or the store where I bought it. Talk about 'direct marketing'.

The economy is in a Serious Dead Zone, kids...think before you shop.
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