Monday, February 15, 2010

Whoopi cushion: Goldberg maintains her Poise. Will you?

Ladies and gentlemen, presenting the face of incontinence, Whoopi Goldberg. Yes, the comedian and The View co-host is helping to get discussion - pardon the pun - flowing about light bladder leakage. More accurately, she's helping Kimberly-Clark market its line of Poise panty pads.

Goldberg is going to be featured in a series of conventional ads and online webisodes that will highlight the bladder control problems of historical/mythical figures like Cleopatra, Joan of Arc and Eve. The goal is twofold: to reach out to young women and to let people know that not all products are created equally when you lay it on the line, or liner.

I'm all for raising awareness, particularly in the younger demo, that one in three women have this problem. But what nags at me is how it was decided that Whoopi is the right spokesmodel to engage young women in this discussion. Aren't they likely to see her as a mother, or grandmotherly, figure, thus defeating the purpose of the campaign? Wouldn't a contemporary like, I don't know, Rihanna or Kate Hudson have more cachet?

Also, why would women today care how Joan of Arc or Cleopatra dealt with weak bladders, even if handled comically? I would have thought something more contemporary would have been the way to go. But what do I know? I'm not the target audience.

Still, I'd love to see the stats after this campaign has played out for a year, just to know if the young ladies take their cues from Whoopi, and to prove me wrong. And forgive me this but I can't help wondering: is there any chance these Poise webisodes will leak online before their intended release date?

Read all about it: Globe & Mail fails to deliver on brand expectations

So, my other half, who I call M'lady, recieved a complimentary subscription to Canada's self-proclaimed national newspaper, The Globe & Mail.

It's a 90-day subscription that began last week, so it's Monday-Saturday delivery. Except, on Saturday, we didn't receive our copy of the newspaper. M'lady called to inquire about it and was told that, for comp subscriptions, they won't do a redeliver.

And I have a problem with this.

Here's the thing. I know I'm not a paid subscriber, but the 90-day comp is supposed to be an enticement for me to become one, right? So, if you were trying to woo a new customer, wouldn't you treat someone like me as if I were an existing customer? Wouldn't you try to impress me with outstanding customer service to give me some sense of what I can expect from you?

Apparently, if you're The Globe and Mail, you don't.

Here's the thing. If you want to have positive brand perceptions among customers - current and potential - you need to deliver a great brand experience. By not offering to send a replacement copy, The Globe and Mail failed to meet my expectations that we would have a paper for 90 days. It also suggests that the Globe and Mail views potential customers very differently than current customers, not valuing them enough to provide such a courtesy.

Sure, it's a small thing. But I think even a small thing like this has the power to alter the public's perception of a brand. So, it's something to keep in mind. And it's something that will be on my mind when the Globe and Mail calls to see if I want to be a subscriber. Here's hoping this news reaches them.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

In light of John Mayer's unfortunate comments...

As has been widely reported, John Mayer said something about how he has the heart of Benetton and the penis of former KKK Grand Wizard, David Duke.

Does this mean that he always does it hooded? If so, I think we've found a new spokesperson for Trojan.

More likely, I think John Mayer is right. He'll have to shut up and sing the blues for a while, and not for any corporate sponsors. It's too bad. It'd be great to see him do some form of male enhancement ad now...

Suggested jingle for Google Buzz

If they cannot license this song, perhaps they can have Buzz Lightyear be the spokesperson?

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

MTV: The Day the 'Music' Died.

So MTV has a new logo. And the interesting thing about it is... they've dropped the Music Television slogan.

Anyone could have told you that the M in MTV doesn't stand for music, and hasn't for a very long time. This thanks to the proliferation of things such as Jersey Shore and The Real World. This content has gradually crowded out music videos and performances.

The question now being, 'If MTV's brand is not all about the music, then what does the M in MTV stand for?' Mundane? Mediocre? Manure? Help me out here...

Big Idea: Commercial Cast Swap

How about we take the bears from this commercial:

And do an exchange with the bears from this commercial:

On second thought, maybe that wouldn't be such a good idea. Could we do an adult diaper commercial for the Chicago Bears? It depends...

Google will always have Paris.

On Sunday, while plowing through the Super Bowl ads on YouTube, I was a little harsh regarding the Google ad that follows. I summed it up as either the worst Choose Your Own Adventure Book or text-based game ever. Here it is for your consumption:

In my defense, I watched the ad after a series of big budget hooey awash in cartoon violence and misogyny. So, the rather modest production values, or simplicity in execution, underwhelmed me. Also, I thought then, and still think, it's a bit mawkish. A bit too much.

But you know what? It's a rather clever ad. The Google brand is front and centre all through the ad. The focus is on how you experience or use it. It tells a story rather well, and in 52 seconds. It's a more compelling narrative than, say, most Hollywood blockbusters. Or, for that matter, most of the ads on Sunday night.

I understand it has been a viral success, but it still strikes me as the wrong ad for the Super Bowl. I mean, given the stereotypes paraded around on Sunday, the last thing you'd expect most young males to do is to go to France, much less watch French films. And thus, my rather dismissive reaction. So this is a mea culpa, of sorts.

Meanwhile, it has inspired a parody...