Update May 15, 2016 I love the commercial about the Subaru Forester that the father hands down to
his daughter. It's a cute commercial. As the Dad gets ready to hand the car over to his daughter he cleans it out and finds
reminders of the daughter growing up including a crayon from when she was a little girl, to flowers from a Prom. While it
is heart warming, it also makes you wonder if Subaru Forester owners ever clean out their cars? If I were buying a Forester
on the resale market I would hope that under the seats aren't reminders from years earlier. I also wonder why Subaru's ad
agency didn't do something a bit more up-to-date such as show the Subaru in videos of these same special events. Home videos
have been around longer than the teenager in the commercial. Subaru, you missed it on this one. The commercial is below.
KRAFT MACARONI COMMERCIAL MADE ME LOSE MY APPETITE
Update March 8, 2014 Kraft is running a commercial for its macaroni and this one made me lose my appetite.
It shows people so "desperate" for macaroni that they are eating scraps that are meant for the trash, a dad destroying
his kids "macaroni art project" to get some macaroni to eat, a "grandpa" eating off a serving platter
at dinner while the rest of the family is saying a prayer, and a mom stealing a big rig loaded with macaroni. It used
a music track of the song "What I Did For Love," and the romance of that song does not match the events portrayed.
LINCOLN KNOWS HOW TO CUT OFF PART OF THE NEW CAR MARKET
Update May 19, 2013 Lincoln made a blunder with a new commercial for its luxury cars.
The commercial shows a car owner, presumably about to pick up a date, drive away when his date approaches the car with a dog
in her arms. The commercial shows the Lincoln owner envisioning the grown-up dog "messing up" his car.
What a wonderful way to cut off the dog-owner section of the new car market!
LA QUINTA, THE HOTEL CHAIN, SHOULD PULL THIS COMMERCIAL ABOUT
PULLING OUT ALL THE STOPS
Update April 1, 2013 Even though
I am writing this on April Fool's Day, it is not an April Fools joke. In fact, it's very serious. La Quinta, the
hotel chain, has taken the phrase "pull out all the stops" and turned it into a TV commercial with a company executive
literally pulling out stop signs and traffic signals for a business presentation. A cute commercial? Yes
it is, and it even includes the sound effects of cars colliding outside the business presentation room.
But pulling out stop signs is a very dangerous thing to do. There was a case of three teenagers
who removed stop signs as a prank. But because the sign was not at one intersection, there was a fatal traffic collission
that took the lives of three teenagers. The teenagers who stole the stop sign were sent to prison. Here is a link
to the news report:
TV commercials though cute should not give anyone bad ideas.
ACURA RECKLESS DRIVING COMMERCIALS
Update December 19, 2012 I am very surprised that Acura, the car company, is running
TV commercials for its new models that involve celebrities including Suze Orman and Dr. Phil driving recklessly. What
are they thinking over at Acura? You'd think a car company would promote drivers keeping their eyes on the road.
What's next, drivers drinking while driving or texting while driving? I can just imagine -- toasting the new model with
a bottle of booze, or while driving texting how much you love the car to your friends. Yeah, that's the ticket.
Watch the Suze Orman commercial below.
GOLDEN CORRAL, JUST WHAT ARE YOU TRYING TO DO?
Update January 29, 2012 For several weeks I've been seeing this commercial promoting
the Golden Corral restaurant chain that shows people literally diving out of a moving car rather than go to another restaurant
with the couple in the front seat because the other restaurant offers a skimpy two-fer offer. The couple, in the commercial,
glady defies injury and death to get a two-fer deal at the Golden Corral restaurant instead.
Really, Golden Corral, just what are you trying to do? Send a message that it's okay to dive out
of a moving car to be first in line and save a few bucks at your place? Here's the commercial (below) which was
put on YouTube:
BUILDING A BRAND WITH YOUR ADVERTISING
Update June 4, 2011 Well, this goof hasn't made it on TV yet, but the blunder has been
made online and in brick and mortar advertising. Caesars Entertainment made the blunder and Ross, the discount department
store that sells bargain priced clothing from department stores is the beneficiary. Here's what happened:
Caesars Entertainment, the casino company and perhaps the most valuable brand among casino companies
in the world, used a photo of a mother and daughter with shopping bags on its website www.Caesars.com to illustrate the various shopping opportunities that the company offers. Unfortunately for Caesars Entertainment,
the same photo is used by Ross for its store displays. Obviously Caesars purchased a "stock photo" which by
itself is OK, but unfortunately for Caesars and fortunately for Ross, the same stock photo is used by Ross. So this
means that Ross could benefit from the additional visual cross marketing that well-to-do shoppers might get from visiting
the Caesars website.
Lucky Ross wins from the Casino. Bargain-priced Ross gets
a boost for its brand from the premier casino company in the world.
THIS TOOTHPASTE DISPENSER
WILL SPREAD GERMS
I just saw
a TV commercial about a toothpaste dispenser that you hang on your bathroom wall, and insert a tube of toothpaste in.
The dispenser is supposed to squeeze out the last drop of toothpaste. That's a good idea. But the bad idea is
this: to squeeze out "just the right amount of toothpaste" you insert the end of your toothbrush into the device,
and push on a lever so the paste is dispensed on the bristles. Oops-- everyone's toothbrush will touch the same lever--
and that's got to spread germs. I was so upset with the concept shown on TV that I forgot the name of the product.
What a bad idea.
MINUTES TV COMMERCIALS... SAVING MINUTES MEANS SAVING MONEY. BUT...
I always thought these AT&T cell phone commercials were catchy with the
savvy mom telling her family that AT&T cell phone minutes don't expire so you can roll them over from month to month.
It really is a catchy idea. But hold the phone -- the rollover minutes don't roll over forever. After a while
the oldest rollover minutes do expire. The commercials have the catch phrase
"saving minutes means saving money" but if you don't use all your minutes and they eventually expire the only one
who is coming out ahead is AT&T. Look, you shouldn't be buying a cell phone plan with more minutes than you will
need or you will use. If you find you have a big rollover balance, cut your contract minutes and save money. Remember
that every minute that does eventually expire represents extra profit for AT&T.
NEW YORK NEW YORK
HOTEL & CASINO WENT TOO FAR
of my comments on this page concern TV commercials, but I am devoting this space to a radio
commercial that I think went too far and probably alienated more listeners than it attracted to the business.
The commercial is for New York New York Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. Obviously the theme of the commercial and the
theme of this casino resort is to mimic New York City life and culture. But
New York New York went too far this time -- because in the radio commercial I just heard it used a very offensive Yiddish word.
commercial says "don't be a shmuck...." Sometimes shmuck is spelled schmuck but no matter how you spell it, in Yiddish
and among true New Yorkers a shmuck or schmuck is
a very offensive word similar to calling someone a prick or a dickhead or a penis which are words that you would never use in a commercial
either on radio or on TV.
New York New York starts calling anyone a shmuck it not only offends me but it makes
me think just how rude New York New York must be -- and I don't think that the image of being a rude place is what New York
New York Hotel & Casino wants.
here's a tip for the marketing managers and advertising executives of New York New York Hotel & Casino: Use the
word shmuck when you're yelling at a driver on the West Side Highway in Manhattan
who cuts you off, or use the word shmuck when you're referring to a store clerk who
deliberately short-changed you. But don't use the word shmuck when you're trying
to sell your hotel and casino as a fun place to be. There's no fun in the word shmuck.
ARE THESE LEXUS DRIVERS
THRILLED OR TERRIFIED?
confused by a new Lexus IS TV commercial that shows Lexus IS drivers burning rubber and zooming around city streets.
In the first place, it's definitely reckless driving. Secondly -- those expressions
on their faces -- are they expressions of being thrilled or expressions that they are terrified by their reckless driving?
And with gas prices as high as they are, would you really want to drive your car like that? And with the cost of brake
pads and brake service what they are, is this any way to treat an expensive car?
SUMMER 2009 CAR
COMMERCIALS-- WHAT ARE THEY THINKING?
auto makers are running new TV commercials this summer that make me scratch my head and ask "why are they doing that?" I understand that car sales are down, so perhaps that is why they are
running these commercials that don't do a very good job of selling their cars. Entertain? Yes, these commercials
do that. But sell? No way.
first troubling commercial is from Mercedes and shows their new "E Class" car zooming, speeding, roaring and then
crashing through a giant plate glass window and settling in a showroom. The car nearly misses several people in the
commercial and sends glass flying. What does this have to do with selling a car? Nothing. Is it entertaintaining
to watch a car blast through glass? Yes, the first time. But not the second, or the third time, or the....
The second troubling commercial is from a car company whose
name I don't know. I'm sure the name of the car company was mentioned in this TV commercial, but it wasn't mentioned
enough to overpower the rest of the commercial's content which was very disturbing. You'll know what I'm talking about,
too. It's the commercial that ends up with a consumer at a running track and his friend is hit by a javelin and the
punchline to the commercial is from an announcer at the track meet asking the victim with the javelin sticking out of his
leg to not move until the distance of the javelin throw is measured. Okay, now what was the car in the commercial?
I don't know. I'm too busy being concerned about the javelin. In fact it made me think about why javelin contests
were eliminated from high school track and field contests decades ago-- because a student was once killed in one of the javelin
SCOTTRADE HAS A HELICOPTER... IN THIS
I used to think
that ScotTrade's TV commercials for its online discount stock brokerage featuring its CEO piloting a helicopter were cool.
The helicopter showed that ScotTrade was high tech, and that ScotTrade and its Chairman were literally on top of the market, and the TV helicopter commercials showed ScotTrade had prestige connected with it.
But... that was before the recession, and before the financial bail outs, and before corporations were selling off and grounding
their corporate jets, and before corporate waste and greed and gazillion dollar bathrooms caught the ire of Congress.
In this economic environment, ScotTrade would be better served getting its Chairman out of
the sky in the helicopter and back on the ground... or even better... in the trenches talking about savings instead of showing off his expensive corporate toy. Corporate helicopters, like the ScotTrade
helicopter, just don't "fly anymore," if you get my drift.
SUPER BLUNDERS IN THE SUPER BOWL
I saw some commercial blunders during the broadcast of Super
Bowl XLIII. Bud Light showed an office worker being thrown out of an upper floor office building window when he suggested
that the company could save money by not serving Bud Light at office meetings. Throwing employees out of windows during
rough economic times is not a good idea, Bud.
Doritos commercial during the Super Bowl showed an employee at an office throw a snow globe through the glass of a vending
machine so he could loot the machine. Another bad example in this economy. Crime should never be made the subject
of a joke.
Spring has been running
a series of commercials in which certain workers "run the world." There was a commercial featuring Firemen
which I thought was creative and made a point. But in the commercial featuring delivery services, one of the delivery
workers found "a freshman" at a school stuck in a school locker. Another bad example to put on TV.
And then there was the Jack In The Box commercial with lovable
Jack being hit by a bus. Gee, do you think the bus drivers of America like that? And how about the kids of America
wondering what will happen to Jack after being hit by the bus?
DON'T JUMP OFF THAT HIGH RISE
Verizon has a TV commercial running for its Rhapsody music
service that is delivered over cell phones, and frankly Verizon goofed with this commercial. It shows a woman taking
a dive off of a high rise building in a city. Yes, it looks like she is a suicide. In the commercial, however,
her plunge is stopped by a "bubble." Yes, it's creative but it sends the wrong message. And I hope some
strung-out kid doesn't watch that commercial and think they can take a dive off of a high rise building and be rescued by
a bubble. Take this one off the air, ASAP.
The Dominos Pizza commercial promoting its new pasta entres is perhaps the biggest
offender. In particular I am referring to the family with the mother and father getting violent with the "pasta
character" in the commercial. It's bad enough that the father takes a pair of tongs to the character, but it is
absolutely disgusting that the mother is shown striking the Pasta Character with a tennis racket. We don't need more
violence on TV. And we certainly don't need a mother being the leader of the violence. Shame on Dominos.
THE MAYTAG REPAIRMAN IS SUPPOSED TO DO NOTHING
For years Maytag has been building the reputation of the Maytag
repairman as having nothing to do because Maytag appliances are built so well. They seem to have missed that point in
their recent commercial that shows the Maytag repairman fixing a voting machine. Fixing the voting machine is certainly
OK for the Maytag repairman to do (because he has no washers ro dryers to fix). But at the end of the commercial, when
an elections official thanks the Maytag repairman, the repairman responds with Gotta go--Busy day. Maytag you blew it.
The Maytag repairman should have responded with "thanks for calling me, I have nothing else to do."
CHRYSLER AND THOSE OVER 35
Chrysler has been running a series of TV commercials showing
a "sales event" that is crowded with shoppers. Perhaps I am wrong, but I don't see any actor in the commercial
older than 35 years old, and most appear to be under 30. That tells me that I am too old (I'm 56) to be shopping for
The political spots for California state issues for the last election were abudnant
and confusing, and just about every five minutes I saw a commercial for No On Prop 7. I've seen three different spots,
and when watching them I didn't have a clue as to what Prop 7 was all about or why I should vote against it. These commercials
remind me of a babysitter who yells "no no no" but gives me no information about what I am doing wrong. I'm
too old for a babysitter.
Is there a TV spot that you think "misses" it's
mark? Email me at Alan@alanbestbuys.com and thanks for watching and good shopping! Alan Mendelson
Here on our new media website "Moneyman" Alan Mendelson who is the original Best Deals TV Show reporter
on KCAL9 and consumer advocate, shows you the best deals on TV, and the best buys, bargains and where savvy shoppers
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