Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Good ideas, wthout the rubbish ad...


Although Northern Planner beat me to it while I was at work; I felt I had to post about the new ads for Coke Zero.

The "good things with none of the diisadvantages" idea is good if not entirely original; but the execution of it just leaves more questions than answers...

Who thought that the writing didnt need editing?

Who watched this during production and didnt think it sounded bad?

Why did they approve an ad which is pretty close to sounding contrived when they are trying to create an image of exactly the opposite?

Yet another example of a good idea being overdone and spoilt. When will some people realize that understatement can say so much more, so much better. If ever there was a clear style difference between Pepsi and Coke, its here; the style that Pepsi max has seems effortless and genuine; whereas this effort just seems forced and smacks of trying to hard to be something.

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

You've obviously never worked on Coke.

They take good ideas (and even great ones) and put them through the grinder, i.e., testing/research/personal managerial stamp and hand it back to you.

Rob said...

I did imagine that would be the case! Shame really, its that refusal to let go that has left them with years of crap ads.

Thanks for posting stranger!

Andrew said...

Somehow it seems worse when you see a great idea that's been mangled by shoddy casting or production or that's great but we also need to make it say this, this and this.... They seem to stand out even more than work that's crap through and through.
I work on something just like this - give them gold and it ends up looking trite. You've got to stick with it though - a mate tells me Honda used to be dreadful.

Rob said...

They do stand out more, but in a really bad way. Not "so bad its good, but a "god this is crap" way.

At least bad ads look and sound like bad ads, so we accept them as so. But ads that are trying to be something they aren't or are patronising/contrived have such a negative impact. (like the Samsung ad i mentioned a while ago)

FishNChimps said...

If you watch it the first time and think "oh look, another crap Coke ad", then it's done its job. You've remembered it's Coke.

Rob @ Cynic said...

Rob - the original idea [as I understand it] was much better, but like Mr Anonymous said, Coke do have a habit of ruining great concepts and 'ego-ifying them'.

I think I should stop now given they still contribute to our salaries, but the stories I could tell. [Cue: evil laugh]

Rob Mortimer said...

I know what you mean FnC, but this to me goes beyong that. You dont just think its memorably bad, but the insincere feel of it gives me a negative force instead of neutral memory.

Thats understandable Rob, but I do think that either Coke are just being completely ignorant about the effect they are having on their own campaigns; or some agencies are just being too scared to tell them the truth. Why on earth would you pay so much money for advertising agencies if you then completely fail to take advantage of their skills?!

Rob @ Cynic said...

Coke is a company that misses the point time and time again.

They think because they sell shedloads of product, they are the World's most popular brand - and whilst in some markets and with some people, they really are that loved - in the main, their success is simply down to owning the majority of the distribution, something they can't admit because it makes a mockery of all their 'research' and 'corporate brainwashing'.

My favourite was when I was in a meeting with their global board and they told me that after months of research, their new brand essence was going to be 'Radical Optimism'

I sat there taking it in before telling them that ultimately, what they were saying was their brand stood for 'Pessimism' - as that was what the radical view of positive thinking was.

There were a lot of questions asked by their superiors after that I can tell you. Oops, I must learn to keep things to myself!

Scamp said...

it's never a good start when an ad begins with a "real person" intoning the product benefit to camera in a tone of reverential awe...

Rob Mortimer said...

See, thats what I like about the whole attitude of Cynic. You aren't afraid to tell huge companies what they are doing wrong... but so many agencies seem to just stay quiet.

If you are trusted with a campaign, they surely you HAVE to be trusted enough to know what is right, otherwise whats the point?!

And Scamp, its so true. Its like they've done a priority list of what is important:

Product benefit
Can Shot
"Thirst Quenching Sound"
Closing Image and Can Shot
Nice trailers
...
...
The ad idea

Its also true about the distribution systems that you mention Rob. Were this any one of hundreds of other products or services, Pepsi would have caught up and overtaken them by now for sure.

hippiewithnoshoes said...

This is at least the third ad I've seen recently which has had a 'aren't ringtones annoying' joke in it.

Even the first one came out too late to be really effective if you ask me.

Rob @ Cynic said...

The way we look at it is that you can go and chase money by creeping to clients or you can attract money by engaging clients based on truth.

We don't blame the big agencies for doing what they do and we'd love to be super-rich, it's just that we're not ready to go down their road to fortune just yet.

Rob said...

Its true David, everyone completely missed the boat on that one.

Its all about truth and trust. If you want a long term (I.e.: Less costly) relationship, then honesty is the way to go.