This ad won’t move ya

The Juicy Fruit TV spot currently airing makes me gnash my teeth for all the wrong reasons. It's the one in the ski lodge, where the head ski nerd is singing a Pete Seeger version of the Juicy Fruit theme song to some other squeaky clean teen-types. In walk our two 'heroes' and, à la John Belushi in Animal House, they grab his guitar and smash it in the fireplace. I'm working from memory here, but I don't think they also rip off the 'Sorry' line that Belushi delivered, so they can't claim it's an homage to that famous scene. They're just stealing it and ruining it. If they are trying to give the brand some new-found attitude and coolness, they missed.

The Juicy Fruit TV spot currently airing makes me gnash my teeth for all the wrong reasons. It’s the one in the ski lodge, where the head ski nerd is singing a Pete Seeger version of the Juicy Fruit theme song to some other squeaky clean teen-types. In walk our two ‘heroes’ and, à la John Belushi in Animal House, they grab his guitar and smash it in the fireplace. I’m working from memory here, but I don’t think they also rip off the ‘Sorry’ line that Belushi delivered, so they can’t claim it’s an homage to that famous scene. They’re just stealing it and ruining it. If they are trying to give the brand some new-found attitude and coolness, they missed.

Yes, I do get the joke – it’s now ‘sugar free.’ But most of the people I talked to don’t remember the new product offering; they just hate the ad.

In fact, the feeling I’m is left with is that the Mentos casting call rejects on the sofa and their cult leader are the ones that really do represent the brand. Stranger still, the ‘spoof’ version of the theme song didn’t sound all that funny or unusual. That jingle has always sounded saccharin-sucky sweet to me.

Yes, the taste is ‘gonna move ya.’ In this case, move you to buy anything but sugar-free Juicy Fruit. This ad sucks out loud.

Bruce Fraser,

Director of Creative Services

Glennie Stamnes Strategy, Vancouver

So that’s how we’re different

I love that Labatt Blue commercial where the guys whistle the Hockey Night in Canada song. It strikes right to your heart. I don’t care if they have the most awful sell line in the whole world, as soon as someone whistles that song, it takes me back to playing Peewee hockey. I just love the idea that there’s a whole bunch of guys that love the same song, and that’s what ties Canadian guys together. We all love hockey.

Marc Stoiber, VP ECD

Grey Worldwide Toronto

An (unintentional) tale of viral marketing

The folks at City Honda of St. John’s Nfld. don’t know who sent out the JPEG currently making the rounds of the Internet, but aren’t surprised that their sign attracted that kind of attention. The slogan is the handiwork of used car manager Peter Howard, a self-described ex-Torontonian ‘who made it in Newfoundland.’

The thrust of the marketing strategy at City Honda is to say it with signs, and the whole team collaborates on brainstorming the punch lines. Howard says the witty sign strategy works: ‘People now look for it,’ and proves the point by adding that City is selling as many cars as the other dealerships along the strip, without the same advertising expenditure. His only other marketing is ads every second week in Buy and Sell, but estimates the weekly spend along the rest of the strip is $3,000. Past displays include ‘Hey look’ with bales of hay as a backdrop, but so far ‘It’s not Uranus, it’s Saturn’ has not been approved.

Win a free bag of swag!

Send in your rant (adsthatsuck@strategymag.com) or rave (adsthatrock@strategymag.com) and, if we deem your response the best of the lot, we’ll send some goodies to your office. This issue’s winner: Bruce Fraser.