There is a saying in London where DLA is based, that “you wait for a bus for ages and then three come along in quick succession”. It would seem it is the same with advertising fails, or is there a pattern forming?
First there was the Pepsi ad:
Pepsi pulls Kendall Jenner ad ridiculed for co-opting protest movements https://www.theguardian.com/media/2017/apr/05/pepsi-kendall-jenner-pepsi-apology-ad-protest?CMP=share_btn_tw
Nivea removes ‘white is purity’ deodorant advert branded ‘racist’ http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-39489967
Followed by the Co-Op ad:
BBC News – Co-op’s ‘Treat your daughter’ Easter egg adverts changed http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-manchester-39503373
Should we be looking for each of these in isolation or are ad agencies out of touch with customers?
If we think about the number of pitches and meetings that would have taken place to agree the ideas (I assume there was more than one), there would have been agreement that the ad was about the target customer. There would have been agreement about tone of voice and fitting in with brand principles. If we take the Pepsi ad, Kendall Jenner would have been chosen (out of a short list of more than one) that she fitted in with the message that Pepsi was trying to convey.
Did nobody think this was a bad idea? Did nobody try A/B testing?
Are people at agencies that out of touch?
Here is a quick way to check out your agency or the agency you are looking to hire?
- Check out the social feeds from the agency, is it all “broadcast”?
- Check out the agencies website. If they have to write “we are a cool and funky agency” they are not.
- Check out the social feeds of the agency, from the CEO downwards. How connected are they with you the customer. How many followers do they have? Is this board cast or are they engaging with the followers?
- Is the agency bringing you insight, that is telling you something you don’t know?
- Is the agency providing a strategy and integrated approach? Social is where your customers are, this has to be part of and not adjunct to the approach.
Here at DLA we don’t do advertising, as research shows that people don’t look at adverts anymore and we actually believe we are moving to an ad free world with the introduction of ad blockers.
But we think this advice holds true for whatever external advice you might be looking for, advertising or marketing. We hope this helps and good luck.
We are a Social Media Agency. We do three things: Social Media Strategy, Social Selling and Social Media Management. Drop us an email and let’s talk about how we can make an impact on your organisation.