Okay, it’s time to play “How Super-Stupid Can Marketers Get?”
Let’s say you work for a shoe store chain, and you want to tell people how great your shoes are. Here’s the pitch for a TV spot: a bunch of white guys in a Hummer are cruising the Serengeti, apparently in search of big game. (What drama.) They find the tracks of their quarry, and set off in pursuit. (Ooh, this is getting good.) They come upon their prey, but (hold on, here’s the funny twist) it’s not an animal, it’s a shoeless Kenyan black marathon runner. They drug the poor guy, who falls to the ground unconscious. And when he wakes up (stop it, you’re killing us!) he’s had running shoes molded permanently onto his feet. (Please, we can’t breathe!!) And as you’re wiping the tears of hilariousity out of your eyes, you might almost miss the runner’s reaction: he looks skyward and screams in despair, NOOOOO!!!
And here’s the best part: when retail store Just for Feet decided to actually produce this mess, they aired it on the Super Bowl! Yep, they spent $2MM to make a horrible racist joke that centers on how world class athletes DON’T WANT THEIR PRODUCT! (HA HA HA!!!!)
And they’re not the only idiots. How about Ford making fun of factory workers who’ve lost their jobs? Burger King equating themselves with Herb, the world’s most annoying and tasteless man? Holiday Inn comparing their renovation to a transsexual returning to a high school reunion?
They all had sincere and expensive hopes of being the most talked-about ad in the self-involved-Super-Bowl-marketing-cotillion-on-steroids-extravaganza. And they failed epically.
So, to honor these duds, here’s what we’re gonna do. It’s time to vote for the WORST Super Bowl ad of the year. And I’m inviting you to play. After the game, just visit https://www.facebook.com/Quicksilver-192221924290798/ and post your choice for the worst, along with your strategic summary of selling suckiness. (Bonus points for using bona-fide ad terms like “target market,” “recall/persuasion,” “insight,” or “call-to-action.”) If you’re not on Facebook, go ahead and email it to me.
I will determine a winning loser. And the respondent with the worst ad/best rationale will get a PRIZE.
(Disclaimer: No alternative means of entry. Determination of winner is entirely up to the whim of Mike Keeler. Specifics of PRIZE is up to the whim of Mike Keeler. Specifics of contest may change at any time without prior notice. Limited time offer while supplies last. No whiners.)
I’ll post the winning loser next week.
(And just because I have too many friends in New England and want to support my local underdog…..Go Iggles!)