Blog Archives

Museum of Badvertising: United Airlines

Over the last few days, I’ve started to see United Airlines TV ads promoting wireless Internet connections on their flights. I flew on United a few days before I starting seeing these ads. The night before that flight I went on





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Posted in Brand Harmony

Be careful with competitor caricatures

Microsoft recently released a series of online video ads that parody Apple, and then quickly removed them. As this article from Gawker describes, the ads were pulled not because they were offensive, but because they were just plain bad. (The





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Posted in Marketing, Observations

Museum of Badvertising: Volkswagen’s weird coda

Have you seen the latest Volkswagen TV ad, focused on safety? Little boy buying a bike: Is it fast? Older boy selling bike: It’s got 10 speeds, my friend.   Same boy, slightly older, buying a small motorcycle: Is it





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Posted in Customer Encounters, Marketing

Don’t vote for that car

People usually scrutinize advertising promises carefully, reacting to each claim of “new and improved” with “prove it to me.”  But it’s election season, that season where people decide to believe the most ludicrous claims that can possibly be crammed into





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Posted in Marketing, Observations

It’s not only your assets that will grow

I didn’t make this up. This is a real-live billboard I saw in Terminal 3 at O’Hare Aiport: Somewhere, there is  written a foundational truth about marketing: Comparing your business to a petri dish is never a good idea. Eeew!





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Posted in Marketing, Observations

May increase suicidal tendencies

I’m organizing my day with my normal tools: laptop, notes from yesterday, a bowl of cereal, and the news on the TV.  Suddenly, a commercial for a bipolar depression medication comes on.  Since I have a friend with this disease,





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Posted in Marketing, Observations

We know where you live

Last week (December 6, 2009, page 26), The New York Times Magazine ran a story about a promotion run by Blu Dot, a furniture maker. Here’s how the promotion worked:  Recognizing the accepted New York tradition of picking up your





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Posted in Marketing, Observations

From the Museum of Badvertising: hotels.com

Can anyone explain this ad to me? What in the world are they trying to say? What in the world were they thinking? (What’s funny about the premise that a hotel will bend over backwards for a guest who comes





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Posted in Observations

From the Museum of Badvertising

Sometimes creative indulgence goes beyond the bounds of taste. AT&T is running a series of ads for its Internet Connect service that show Bill Kurtis, holding a laptop in various out-of-the-way places, declaring, “I just found the Internet.” Sounds like





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Posted in Marketing, Observations
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