Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Bleeding Hell

Is it irony that offices of the same agency made this ad too?
I don't like to criticise ads in an unconstructive way, because I know how hard it is to create good campaigns, and to get those good campaigns through the client.

But sometimes you see an ad that just has no redeeming qualities whatsoever, and there is little you can do but wonder how in the name of all things creative that monstrosity ever got to air.

 May I introduce you to the Colgate Pro Gum Health ad. 30 seconds that single-handedly takes advertising back 30 years. Their recent ads have all been poor, but at least they were just simple, style free ads that showed you some product and information while interacting with what seemed like normal people.

This ad though, commits some unforgivable cardinal sins of advertising.

  • Let's start with the 'real' people who couldn't look more like actors if they had their equity cards held up in front of their face.
  • Dialogue that tries to sound natural but feels stiled, fake and irritating, while acted in a way that feels so incredibly posed that it makes you want to laugh.
  • There's the 'focus group leader' who looks like he has been recruited based on his looks alone.
  • Oh and not forgetting the absurdly comic 'ask your dentist' ending with mind-bogglingly silly photo. (I actually did burst out laughing the first time I saw it).
  • Additionally, as mentioned by @AJ_ay_it the stylistic approach to branding of plastering everything in the logo COLGATE COLGATE COLGAAAAATTTTEEEE! , and that this researcher should be reported to the MRS for his selling..!
What decade are we living in?

This ad couldn't feel more dated if it was shot in black and white and fronted by someone who is dead. It talks to people in a way that seems to presume they have all the intelligence of a intellectually challenged loaf of bread. If you want people to understand the facts then just tell them in a compelling way, don't break out sales tactics that would be laughed at even by Alan Sugar.

I find it hard to believe that a creative agency could produce this, an ad completely devoid of any charm or creativity whatsoever. I don't know whether this is the fault of the agency or the client, but this kind of advertising will not engage or inspire anyone. Telling the facts can be a good strategy, but not like this. I spoke to someone at another agency who said it felt so negative that he was actually thinking about giving up using Colgate. I say this as someone who has been a loyal Colgate user for over a decade, their products are good, but talking about them in this way is just horrific.

It's not 1955 anymore Colgate.


gemma said...

That as SCREAMS 'client interference at every every stage'.

I bet it also had to be dub-able for different territories, sigh.

Rob Mortimer (aka Famous Rob) said...

Absolutely, for that very reason I added the line about it feeling like it hasn't come from a creative agency.

Such a waste of budget, creative resource and viewer patience.