today's AMAZING TV AD : honda's "cog" 2 minute tv spot

for more on this, go to this post :; april 14 post.
the inspiration is mount pinatubo when some years ago, all of a sudden, after decades of being dormant, it decided to erupt, spewing debris and ash several kilometers high, blowing ashes to float everywhere, far and wide, turning the skies gloomy gray as far away as metro manila, hundreds of kilometers away, covering metro manila streets and rooftops with thick ash. the pinatubo eruption was so powerful that its ashes changed the color of sunsets not only in the philippines but also worldwide.

that's what happens when clients and advertising agencies decide to run ads not worthy to be called advertising. its dark, its huge and very irritating and unfortunately, everywhere!

all they are doing is wawam! what a waste of advertising money!

here is a first row view of Philippine Advertising and Philippine Marketing.

mount pinatubo erupts shooting ashes several kilometers high, then floating to blanket many other towns hundreds of kilometers away

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Wednesday, April 2, 2008

asi's diuretic, errr, coca cola tv spot

i understand asi taulava is coke basketball team's superstar and has a very wide following. i also understand that he probably gets the top salary among their players in the team. and it makes sense for coke to do a coke ad with asi.

but why do a COKE commercial like this one?

mood and tone of the tv spot is all wrong. the whole tv spot feel and sound like an ad for an insurance company or a diuretic. it makes coke look like a product for old people and most importantly, it took the youth out of coke. coke is one brand where youth (not necessarily "young") is forever there.

the commercial opens on the right note with asi playing aggressively, exactly the kind of basketball play he is known for. but everything turns downhill after that first scene. copy and visuals take a sordid turn when asi says things and is shown in situations where we know in our hearts asi don't say and don't get into in real life. he is a sports hero, remember?!

copy talks about how he expels a lot of energy, and how that results to a bigger appetite (huh? a basketball superstar eats food?), making him a lot more (huh? you need food to play basketball?) and the further he goes (huh?).

then all of a sudden, unmindful of a need for a smooth transition, the ad talks about what a balance of life mean to him. it's not about the kind of emotional balance or ordinary balance that we are familiar with, but apparently for this basketball superstar, balance in life for him is being able to eat as much as he wants as long as he remains active. based on this commercial, asi enjoys two things - basketball and eating a lot (what? huh?).

is that the asi we know?

i also understand the marketing objective of this ad - increase consumption by convincing users to drink coke during meals. coke's philippine business has been reduced significantly year to year for sometime now. they need every additional case of coke to be consumed by users in times other than just being thirsty or a desire to be cool and hip. they are giving coke a functional benefit, this one with meals other than just an emotional one. (huh? but that's a whole new topic all together!)

the marketing and advertising objectives are understandable. even the use of asi. this is not the first time that coke in the philippines have use this copy strategy for their ads but is this ad the best approach to deliver on these objectives?

there are disconnects, in fact many, where our hearts and minds refuse to accept asi looking and sounding like he is in a diuretic ad or being a life insurance pitchman. the most important keys to success in real life celebrity endorser tv ads are - REALITY and IN-CHARACTER, the latter being slightly more important. we like to watch our real life heroes in ads when they are shown within the context of our expectations and our real life views of the celebrity, within the context of why we love the celebrity in the first place. we love asi for basketball, his attitude and the verve he demonstrates in every play - his aggressive, never say die attitude and dominating play. but we see none of that in this ad. well, very little of it. asi is about power and attitude. in other words, in this ad, we don't see him in things we love him for.

this feels like two commercials forced into one, like a cruel edit - the tiny bit at the beginning, the asi we know who was playing the kind of basketball we love him for and the rest featuring someone we don't know of. the asi we see in that ad feels like an alien who invaded asi's human body. it also feels like a tv ad that has been mostly written by the client, someone desperate to ramp up market share. and to achieve that, decided to put the marketing objectives he wrote in his marketing plan into the ad ignoring the protests of the creative director. i won't be surprised if the creative director of this ad decides not to include this ad in his resume.

there are other disconnects, the ad being very disjointed- is asi the right person to talk about big appetites, considering that he is an athlete who looks very fit? no attempt was made to explain or make a sale on the idea of coke consumption with meals or coke consumption and appetite. and how all those relate to a balanced life. the absence of the explanation on those points seem to say the ad is relying on the star power of asi to get people the blinded somewhat, to somehow get past the non-correlation of those elements, ignore the disconnects and get people to drink coke during meals. it they are relying a lot on asi, why didn't they present asi in a way that is most familiar to us?

not only is this commercial showing many things that are wrong, it's also littered with huge gaps on logic and very poor at making a sale. i understand saying something new and surprising about the celebrities we love can be a good thing. but in this case, it's never good to know that asi loves a diuretic!

this asi coke ad - it's a WAWAM!

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