Jimbo’s World (ISSUE #6) What the Ads should Really Say
Here’s a short and sweet comment regarding a couple of things that tick me off in the media and advertising. I believe in truth in advertising, so this is my take on what should be said.
ITEM #1 Truth in Advertising: Viagra Commercial
There are some commercials running in Canada that are really quite cute. Two of them go something like this.
Husband (standing in full frame): “My wife and I like to stroll. In fact, we stroll everywhere.”
CUT TO SCENE: Chubby guy following his wife in some kind of power walking scenario. Both are looking bored. Husband looks way out of shape. Wife looks pissed. Appears as if they’ve been married . . . oh . . .30 years or so.
Husband (back to full frame): “Then I decided to try Viagra.”
Husband: “We don’t stroll very much any more!”
Wife stands smiling at his side. She has one of those Cheshire-Cat type smiles. Both are way beyond middle age. They look like your Uncle Ernie and Aunt Alice. YYYYEEEWWWW!
WIFE: My husband likes to watch a lot of sports on the TV.
SCENE: Husband and wife on the sofa, both looking bored and definitely not in touch with one another.
WIFE: He even watches darts!
WIFE: Then I got my husband to try Viagra.
WIFE: Now we don’t watch sports anymore.
Smiles and chuckles become the order of the day.
Don’t you think this is false advertising? This isn’t reality! The commercial should really go something like this.
Jimbo’s Viagra Commercial
WIFE: My husband and I don’t really communicate anymore. I do my thing. He does his thing. We pretty much go our own way.
CUT TO SCENE: Husband reading the paper, beer in his hand. Wife is knitting a sweater. Both are about as attractive as two homeless people on skid row. Wife has hair in rollers and is wearing a bulky housecoat. This could be your mom and dad.
WIFE: Then I got my husband to try Viagra.
WIFE: Now he’s hardly ever home any more.
CUT TO SCENE: Husband grinding it out on the dance floor with a bevy of Cougars dressed like skimpy Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders.
Don’t you think that’s more reflective of this guy’s personal reality.
ITEM #2 Truth in Advertising: Moore’s Suit Commercial
I’m not quite sure, but I think this commercial is by Moore’s, a men’s clothing store. Anyway, the commercial shows a really cool looking dude, unshaven, hair askew, strutting along like a model in a fashion show of sorts. The dude’s approaching middle age, has some salt and pepper in his hair, and he wears stylish glasses.
I’m thinking, “Ya, I could look like that dude! I could have that swagger”
I decide to table my idea and so I say to my wife, “I think I could get that look, hon. Hey, I’d be pretty suave. Waddaya think, babe?”
Here’s where the reality jumps in to kick me in the ass.
My dear wife responds by saying, “EEEEWWWW! I wouldn’t want men looking at you that way!”
TRANSLATION: If I dress like the commercial I’m going to come across as if I’ve changed teams.
I guess it’s a matter of point of view. But, I begin to wonder why I liked the look in the first place. I’d better stick to my vagabond style of T-shirts and jeans –the rugged look!.
Yet again, there must be truth in advertising. Sometimes I just don’t see it.
ITEM #3 Truth in Advertising: GM”s Newspaper Car Ads
Over the past few months I keep coming across these full page ads in the newspaper from General Motors. All have huge graphics displayed with all the numbers as plain as the eye can see. They advertise a tremendous deal on two particular vehicles. And, guess what, it’s called THE LAST CHANCE sale.
EXAMPLE: Pontiac G5 SE $13 998 purchase price and with a $2950 down payments, $84 biweekly for 72 months. This includes a whole whack of standard features.
WOW! Get me one of those.
So, old Jimbo decides to scan the internet looking for this vehicle at dealers, including a search of the GM Canada website. Guess what, he can’t find a car of that description anywhere! The only G5’s he sees are listed at a price from $22 000 to $25 000 a pop. WTF!
Well, there is always that local dealer. That’s the one where I’ve purchased three vehicles over the past 18 years. They’re a GM dealer. So I fire off a query e-mail which includes reference to the last salesman who assisted me. I ask about the “deal” and whether they “can get me one of them vehicles” through a dealer trade. I get no response. WTF
I try to call the Business Manager but can’t reach her so I fire off another torpedo via e-mail, claiming I’ll never again look at a car from GM, because “where’s the customer loyalty, Madame?”
Here’s the response from the Business Manager, verbatim.
“Yes, there are some great deals on all of our vehicles at the moment ;however, stock is obviously dwindling down since these offers have been in place since July 1st.
The advertised promotion of $84 biweekly financed at 5.99% for 72 months with $2,950 cash down ( prior to taxes, destination charge, administration and licensing fees) is a very real quote.
IF, you can find that exact vehicle and I say IF... This is a reoccurring issue we have at this time of year where the customer wants to take advantage of the great deals but either ends up sacrificing color or paying a little more for options that they might not have taken otherwise. What I can tell you is that for the 2010 G5 SE - the deal is very similar with a much greater availability.”
I’ve scanned every corner of Ontario for a vehicle like that and found exactly –ONE! (It was sold!)
So, is this a bait and switch, or what?
“What I can tell you is that for the 2010 G5 SE - the deal is very similar with a much greater availability.”
Lure me in with the “so called” deal and sell me more expensive shit. I first responded to this add early in September and the exact same add appeared in the Toronto paper today, October 8th! There are none of these freakin’ cars out there! They do not exist! I’m sure these full page color ads cost a bundle.
So, let’s go forward with truth in advertising with this one. We’ll change the copy to reflect reality. We’ll call it the:
NO CHANCE DEAL: ON THE LAST OF THE 2009’s
(You know the fine print at the bottom of those ads; the print you need a magnify glass to read. Well here’s what it should read.)
“You might have gotten this car back in September 2008, because we had about twenty of them in stock worldwide. But, don’t worry, they’re all gone! We have higher priced models filling our lots to overflowing and we’ll gladly sell you one of them at full price. Maybe, had we build a shitload of these smaller economy cars, and maybe if they were available through this sale in October 2009, then just maybe we wouldn’t have gone bankrupt. But, remember –YOU OWN THE COMPANY! Buy a car from us and you’ll see that those after tax dollars are well spent, too. You can take that to the bank . . . sucker!” (DISCLAIMER: Listed price does not include Federal and Provincial Tax)
Ya, truth in advertising, that’s what we need more of.
Can you add to these examples? What truths would you like to see? Drop off a comment if you’d like.
Growin’ older but not up!