Living in the Caribbean there is a considerable amount of influence that comes across from America, from products to the TV programs and of course the advertising, more importantly the advertising of the drug companies.
Never in the world of advertising and in any category, are ads so implicitly focused on issues we as humans might be suffering and how they have the wonderful cure that will allow people to run through sunny fields, eat what they want, run and play tennis no matter the age, etc etc. Other advertising is more macro and plays on other basic human needs such as taste, entertainment etc but satisfy a more short term immediate need, without promising to change our lives forever.
So what’s the issue then, are these not all these products something great that we need, and will change our lives forever? It’s not that, it’s more the context of the advertising that I am going to discuss and is it really necessary for them to be the way they are?
It’s something I have been thinking for a while, why oh why are these ads so mundane and seem to be written by the same person, obviously stuck in a broom cupboard with no exposure to the real world that exists around them. Considering the plethora of products available and the incessant advertising you see of these ads on America TV, surely someone could have come up with a different formula by now?
Having been thinking about this for a while, I thought surely I cannot be the only one to have this opinion and sure enough I am not. Forbes (just one of many) wrote an article nearly three years ago, asking is it time for the drug companies to stop advertising? If only they had read the article and listened, American advertising might have been able to move forward.
It’s not just the pain of having to sit through these night after night but thinking about the people actually behind them. You could just imagine the creative brief:
Well it’s very simple.
We start off with an unfortunate person describing their symptoms and how life is bad, then they take xxxx and suddenly the clouds part, the sun shines and they are playing tennis or ball, all worry free.
You think wow this is great, this must be fantastic, and then it happens. The VOICE OVER!
While the sun is shining and you see the previously afflicted person now experiencing life to the full all at the same time being warned, how by taking this product you may suffer from kidney failure, blood clots, brain hemorrhaging, death etc etc.
The story carries on, the sun is still shining and finally cuts back to the positives of the product with the final cut – the product shot.
WOW, I don’t know what is worse, the actual condition or how by taking a presumed cure it may actually kill me!
Obviously there are legalities that need to be followed and if you are suffering from the ailment then this might seem like the miracle you need. However working in marketing myself every time I see these ads, I ask myself the same question: Surely there must be a different way?
By now they are now just wall paper, you don’t even listen and at best they are just comical, I suspect not just for me but for millions of others So please, please, please if you work on these ads, do what your paid to do and that is be creative, not follow a run of the mill storyboard that everyone is and get paid a fortune to do it.
So if you all agree, lets club together, write a new script, send it off and all become millionaires.
My name is Daymonde and I am a multiple award winning international marketer. After graduating in Applied Economics, I started my career In London working in Market Research. Graduating during the financial crash meant it was not the best degree to have but my passion was always marketing and advertising so I looked to move into that field.