Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Advertising Watch 2

Gather 'round, children. I'm going to tell you the story of The Laziest Ad Campaign in the World.

I haven't found any scans of the hideous display ads currently infesting New York (besides the stupidities I'm about to slam, they're also an ugly purple hue), but you can see a black & white ad here, on page 39 of the 11/16/05 Palo Alto Weekly. (We live in a weird world, I'll admit it.) There might be better scans of these ads somewhere on the web, but I haven't found them. (The same company's TV commercials are here, but I haven't watched them.)

So let me set the scene:

The company is Ameriprise.

The product is financial planning.

The slogan is "A generation as unique as this needs a new generation of personal financial planning."

The tone is so condescending I can taste it from five blocks away from a payphone ad.

The display and print ads feature baby boomers (Oh, did you think this could have been targeted at anyone other than boomers? Pshaw, I say. And also Feh.) doing such amazing, fantastic, uniquely baby-boomerish things as...

being Cub Scouts and cheerleaders!

wearing clothing that now looks silly!

engaging in recreational pharmaceuticals!

posing for yearbook photos and holiday snaps!

I must admit that, looking at these ads around New York for the last several months, I have come to the conclusion that boomers are indeed unique -- they're uniquely moronic if they fall for this horrible, pandering drivel.

I don't know who did this campaign, or how close to 5 PM on the Friday before a long weekend he came up with this idea, but I do know one thing: whatever Ameriprise paid for this campaign, it was too much. Uniquely too much, even.

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