Monday, March 26

Mad Men, The Lost Opportunity

Last night was the season premiere of Mad Men, 17 months in the waiting.  And although the show didn't disappoint necessarily, the advertising sure did.  This was a big pop culture moment for brands, and no one took advantage of it.  I was quite surprised, especially after the Newsweek edition this week with all the 60s inspired print ads (admittedly it's much easier to produce a dedicated print ad than a tv spot).

During our live Twitter chat at #MadMedExp, we were all counting out the brand mentions and waiting eagerly for a big brand moment.  It never came.  There were no brands woven into the plot as in seasons past, and no inspired creative to create instant buzz.  Where was the big clothing partner, Banana Republic, and Estee Lauder for that matter, when we needed some "period" advertising creative?  We needed something interesting, period.  Such a disappointment from an advertising perspective.

I will do a shout out to Miller 64 though, the new low calorie beer.  Love the logo, which does rather coincidentally have a 60s feel to it.  The campaign, which has several executions, is quite contagious.  Love "blood, sweat, and beers!" and the song that declares "we live a life of balance!"  A nice change-up in the beer category.

The other insightful advertising moment came from Clorox, again with a campaign of multiple executions around "bleachable moments."  Love the pun.  I especially liked how the brand offered a real portrayal of Dads, not the stereotypical comic version.  The hook is real and relate-able, that's for sure.

Sigh ... these spots could have been on any show, and in fact have been on many of them.  In my book, if you really want to maximize a touchpoint, you create something dedicated to it that really connects with your consumers.  That can't happen every time for sure, but there are moments of opportunity where a brand can really score.  Last night, the only score was by Don Draper.

Best in show?  Two part award for best moments:
- quote of the night:  "since when are clients right?" (when Don wouldn't defend the team's creative)
- Joan, the whole night!

What's your experience?  Jim.

Jim Joseph
President, Cohn & Wolfe North America
Author, The Experience Effect and The Experience Effect for Small Business
Professor, NYU

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