On the way into work this morning, I found myself behind a tanker truck bearing the company name “Big Green Oil”. Let’s step right on past the hypocrisy inherent in that name (another rant for another day, as TH would say), and talk about the pure unadulterated laziness in the selection of that name. “Huh – everybody’s talking about this “Green Energy” stuff. We’re an Oil company. Oil is Energy.” And that, apparently is as far as the “thinking” applied to the decision went.
This same kind of laziness is apparent in some of the advertising for some pretty big players in the corporate world, too. Consider the case of Toyota, whose flagship products are currently plagued by problems with (1) uncontrolled acceleration, and (2) unreliable braking – yet ALL of their current advertiaments STILL contain the slogan “Moving Forward”. Irony, anyone?
On the Sunday AM talking-point-fests this past weekend, I noted a new ad for the investment product known as Spiders (SPDRs – Standard & Poor’s Depositary Receipts). They actually use the first linr childhood ditty “The Eensy-Weensy Spider” in the ad. Does anyone recall the SECOND line of that song? Yup … that’s what we want – to see our investments “washed out” in the next rainstorm.
The classic example of the above, of course, was Microsoft’s campaign for the Windows95 launch. Win95, you may recall, introduced the now-ubiquitous “Start” button, and MS threw their budget to the wind, obtaining the rights to use the Rolling Stones tune “Start Me Up”. That song, of course, has the recurring lyric “You make a grown man cry”. Surprisingly accurate, when you think about it – how many of us were driven close to tears by our early Win95 experiences?
Here’s what I wonder about … Has this become accepted practice because THEY don’t take the trouble to think just a little bit ahead, or because they know that they can count on US not to?