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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Thursday, June 5, 2008

judy ann santos' meralco system loss tv spot

there is nothing earth shaking about the judy ann santos "system loss" tv ad for meralco from an advertising stand point. it's a run of the mill, quick produce tv commercial like most of the ads we see on tv. it won't win any advertising award anytime soon or later.

the commercial itself, copywriting, concept and production values are unremarkable but the marketing and communication strategy or thinking behind it is brilliant.

here is a background snap shot : there is an on-going media war between the government and winston garcia versus meralco on supposedly the fight for the lowering of power rates in the country, which happens to be the second most expensive in asia.

it first started as a media war, but it became a real world corporate battle when garcia, doing a 180 degree turn from previous announcements that he does not intend to take over meralco actually attempted a hostile take-over of meralco during the annual stockholders meeting that meralco had a few weeks ago. garcia came to the meeting armed not with plans and intelligent arguments but with an infirmed SEC order preventing the counting of the proxy votes casted in favor of the majority stockholders but was thwarted by brilliant lawyering on the part of the meralco legal team. of course it did not stop there, the media war continues to this day.

at the heart of the issue is the so called "system loss" where meralco passes on to consumers the losses they incur in transmitting the power from the meralco source to the individual residential and commercial users. system loss is not unique to meralco nor to the power industry. it is a global and national practice among power disrtributors. even other manufacturing businesses pass their own version of system loss to consumers. also by law, meralco is allowed to pass a system loss equivalent to 9.5% to its customers.

the juday tv spot is a brilliant marketing and communication move because it dramatically tips the scale in favor meralco through a totally unexpected means. i think the juday tv spot caught winston garcia and the government flat footed. i don't think winston garcia and the government were able to anticipate or even imagine meralco will launch such a media attack through a tv spot featuring juday.

before the juday tv spot, the media war or the battle for winning public opinion was waged through countless press releases, daily press and tv interviews and full page print ads from both camps. the juday tv spot was a refreshing take and totally out of the box but powerful.

first, this is probably the first time in the history of philippine advertising where a national issue that had political and economic implications was explained to the public through a tv spot during a non-election year. political ads we have had before cannot be compared to the juday spot, the political ads were meant to sell the candidates, the juday tv spot is meant to explain to the public some very technical component of the electric bills we all pay.

the use of juday is also a brilliant move and very pinoy. in other countries, topics of this sort would have have featured compelling visuals to illustrate the point or experts in the field like well known engineers, economists or professors doing the talking in the ad. but, we are in the philippines, right? philippine heroes or figures of authority do not come from such esoteric fields, they come from the interview set of boy abunda's The Buzz!

juday reeks of masa! and i mean that as a compliment for the ad agency who chose her. i am guessing that system loss is difficult to understand for most consumers. the use of the block of ice melting while on transit from plant to consumer is also a brilliant creative idea. it simplifies and eloquently communicates what system loss, down to the lowest level or median level of the consumer mind. a simple idea or explanation delivered by a simple woman, juday, admired by simple folks. brilliant!

more than the choice of juday and the use of the melting block of ice mnemonic device in the ad, what trumps these two brilliant components of the effort is the brilliant marketing and communications strategic move of winning the battle for public opinion through a tv spot over and beyond the press releases and interviews.

this effort puts meralco on the driver seat in this battle for public opinion. meralco is now defining the issues and doing it very well. winston garcia and the govt needs to play catch up now.

not only is this ad historic for the philippine advertising industry, it can be historic for the whole country in the way battles are waged to win public opinion.

1 comment:

  1. strange that they are using tv ads to explain issues like these. must be the first time ever done.


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