Tracy K. Lorenz ...

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Commercials

I took some advertising classes in college and if I remember correctly advertising is supposed to make people want to buy your product. If you (the company) were really committed you’d develop an entire advertising campaign and that repeatability would drill into the consumers head and every time they’d see a pearl they’d be drawn to buy a bottle of Prell.

But sometimes the advertising campaign has the opposite effect, the commercials repel you like a magnet, and you’d rather marry a vegan than buy whatever the seller was selling. Following is my personal list of those products.

Sling TV: Some brainiac decided that “Sling” sounds like “Swing” and morphed that into “We’re Slingers” where an ultra-creepy couple tries to seduce their neighbors into joining them in the thrills of watching streaming TV. That advertising guy must have had a lot of muscle because no one in any of the focus groups that watched the ads stood up and told him just how awful that concept was. Or maybe they were afraid to say anything in the hope of leaving the meeting alive, whoever developed this campaign has a dark side.

The Liberty Mutual Emu: The Emu isn’t funny, it isn’t clever, and I don’t see any way it ties into the purchase of insurance. Then again Liberty Mutual has a history of moronic commercials including the classic “I named him Brad, I loved Brad.”

“Don’t Mess with my Discount”:  Sticking with insurance, State Farm followed up the God-awful “Cheryl’s She Shed” with an even worse concept, and that’s no small feat. Apparently, State Farm gives you a discount if you don’t get a speeding ticket. This causes pregnant women to scream out, “Don’t mess with my discount,” as their husband tries to drive them to the hospital while in labor. The woman will also not speed if her child has to go to the bathroom really bad. All this commercial does is make me want to give the extremely unsympathetic woman an Indian burn on her left arm.

“What”: Man, what is it with insurance companies? There’s a long-running series of commercials where actor Dennis Haysbert plays destructive items like a tree branch, a cell phone, and a basketball rim (I actually like some of those), but in the latest rendition he plays a car thief and he and the car owner take turns yelling “WHAT!” at progressively louder levels. By the third “WHAT!” I’m hoping the car owner ends up inside Cheryl’s burning she-shed.

Chevrolet: Speaking of cars, I honestly think I would never buy a Chevrolet specifically because of their pandering fake focus groups. Maybe if you didn’t have to pay ten actors per spot your trucks wouldn’t cost sixty grand.

Any and all phone-plan commercials and/or cable TV commercials: I don’t even know if the ads are clever or not, all I know is these people think we’re morons. “Oh, my rate is half of AT&T’s (for the first six months and then you stab me like a goat). Gee, I think I’ll switch.” All phone deals are a gyp, no one’s buying into your crapadoddle, and if you know even the most basic math you know that none of your claims ... ad up.

Printed by permission of the author. Email him at Lorenzatlarge@aol.com.
Get Tracy’s latest book at BarnesandNoble.com or Amazon.com, or download it from www.fastpencil.com.
Only $3.99, cheap.

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