Tampons. I start with that just to give my guy readers a fair warning. You might want to stop reading after this sentence, cause this product doesn’t apply to you. Ladies, do you actively think about what brand of tampons you buy? I didn’t. In fact for a long time, I thought Playtex and Tampax were the same thing and didn't know which one I bought (why do they both end in “x”? There’s Kotex, too. Wait seriously, does anyone know why?). Then I saw these commercials, and everything changed.
Being a sociology major, I loved this one:
But more of my focus will be on this one:
Next time I was at the store, I bought them. Partially because of the commercials, and partially because of the black box with neon colors. Neon's in right now. Recently I was asked why I like these commercials so much, and I thought a long time about my answer. Of course, by the time I was done thinking, my friends didn’t care about my response any more, so I decided to write about it here.
I love it because it references the strategic, purposeful choices advertisers make to reach their target audience. They’ve (and by “they” I mean ad agency, JWT) realized that advertisements are everywhere and they can no longer pretend like they aren’t marketing to us. They need to admit it. And that’s why I love this. It’s like Dorothy going behind the curtain to see the Wizard of Oz. They’re pulling back the curtain to let us see exactly who they’re targeting, and why they’ve made the choices they’ve made (I love the line “You can relate to me because I’m racially ambiguous”).
But, wait a minute, I like it because they’re admitting to unabashed advertising choices. But…they aren’t admitting to it. They’re actually saying, “Buy Kotex because we don’t have ridiculous commercials!” So who are they accusing? Competitors! AND HEREIN LIES THE FEUD!
But it didn’t become a true feud until this ad campaign aired:
I tried as hard as I could to find the TV commercial with the girl diving, but to no avail (put it on Youtube, P&G! Work that social media savvy you demonstrated with the Old Spice commercials). This print ad is similar though. It features the phrase, “At a moment like this, I don’t care if my tampons came in a little black box”, and at the bottom it even makes a claim about being better than U by Kotex. Thems fightin’ words, and I love it.
According to a psychology article I recently read, “whenever you showcase your brand, you also activate your competitors' brands in the minds of your target audience.” If that’s true, why not play up the feud in your commercials? You can’t ignore your competitors, because your consumers definitely aren’t. So take the opportunity to acknowledge, to entertain and to get the public on your side.
*Note: the picture came from another blog. I read the post and it seems we have similar opinions on the tampon commercials! Check it out: http://advertisinginthecity.wordpress.com/