There is a new trend in advertising, and frankly I don’t like it.
Too many years ago than I care to remember I informed my parents that after my GCSE’s I was going to go full time at my Saturday job in a sports shop.
“Fine” my mother said. “We’ll sit down and work out what your contribution to the household bills will be. Unless you stay in education. Then we will support you.”
A few quick sums and and it didn’t seem such a good idea. Not having a Scooby Doo what to do with my life I chose Business Studies. One of the modules was Advertising. I loved it and had visions of working at one of the top Ad Agencies. It didn’t happen, but I still enjoy a good advert. I’m not too impressed with these shock adverts.
Some firms like Paddy Power regularly use images in press and poster advertisements to cause controversy and get people talking. Like the one below.
This was the most complained about advert in the UK in 2002. They maintain the odds were on which one crosses the road first, not which one gets hit first!
This Christmas there was, as usual, a big anti drink driving campaign run by the RSA. What sets it apart from previous campaigns was that it centered around the death of a 4 year old boy, Ciarán Treacy, who was hit by a drunk driver and killed.
The mother was featured, as was the nurse who helped try to save this poor boy’s life. She even told about how he died in her arms. There was video footage of Ciarán shot by his parents when he was still alive.
Now I get the reasoning behind using real people and events. The hope that hearing and seeing these peoples heartbreak will make someone think twice about drink driving and not do it.
The problem is, as an advert it is too upsetting. Normally I watch adverts. Some of them are brilliant. How many YouTube hits did Max the dog get the day it was aired? Kevin the carrot made the run up to Christmas more entertaining. Meteor have had some brilliant ones. I still have the odd watch of their hamster adverts every now and then for a giggle.
Guinness are well known for their striking cinematic advertisements.
The main reason for an advertisement is either brand awareness or to get you to take action!
Unfortunately the only action this ad did for me was to make me turn over. Perhaps the message would have been better if it was actors talking about a fictitious child killed by a drunk driver.
I can’t show video but here, is a link to the Irish Times where you can view the advert.
One of the road safety adverts that still sticks in my mind is one from years ago, a small child playing in a garden and a car loses control at speed and rolls in slow motion, killing the child. It sticks in my mind some 15 years later!
Is it just me or do you think this sort of advertising is a step too far!