Wednesday, July 29, 2009

An interesting turn in ads

I noticed a few interesting trends with ads recently. Unfortunately I don't have any visual or recorded samples for you so you'll just have to close your eyes and use your imagination.

First up, the new Lotto 649 billboard ads caught my eye recently. In the past, they have always pushed a "Can you imagine?" mindset with their ads, making people think about how nice it would be to win. You could bully people that were mean to you, spend it on frivolous things, or just celebrate like crazy.

The new ads, however, moves away from a "Oh that would be nice" mood to a "I need this!" train of thought. The ad that I noticed had the word "RENT" written in a large water streak with the 649 logo on a yellow sponge wiping it away. Essentially, the image they're trying to portray here is that winning the lottery will take care of all of life's necessary bills, like rent.

It's a smart move made in the wake of the recession. People are penny pinching and may not want to spend those $2-3 on wishful thinking tickets. So, instead, the brilliant advertisers working with the national lotto opted instead for a campaign that makes the lottery look like something necessary to survive.

The other ads that got my attention were a couple of radio ads for Chrysler cars. I believe they were Columbia Chrysler and Maple Ridge Chrysler. Both ads were done using old-school ideas, similar to how the King of Floors work:

The difference was that one ad really worked while the other did not. (The King of Floors mostly work, IMHO). Naturally, with the decline in car sales in general and drastically for all American cars, adverts are necessary to reel in the buying frenzy.

The Columbia Chrysler ads uses the "We're so Crazy!" styled ads, complete with random sound effects to drive home the fact that they're "stark raving mad" and selling cars for low low prices. This ad works. The sound effects and the timing of the ad really makes it stand out from the other ads and connects the message with the consumer in a strong and definite manner.

The Maple Ridge Chrysler ads, on the other hand, fail epically. The announcer is mono-tone and drones on and on. It took immense effort for me to even remember the name of the car dealer. So much, in fact, that I cannot even recall what the selling point of the ad was, except that it had something to do with low prices and you should be excited about it. This ad fails to stand out and fails to make an impact, representing everything you can do wrong with a radio ad.

Budget advertising is something that we can look forward to for at least another year. Hopefully, more people will learn from mistakes of others in the past and do something interesting with that knowledge.

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