Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Ads are a dime a dozen!

So here we are reviewing 12 ads at a time, a full mixed bag:
First, there's that Al Joumhouriyya ad claiming it is the "best selling newspaper" - I'd really love to see the circulation figures... Apparently they got it "figured" out - I am not too convinced... I really want to see the comparative sales charts and all that.
Then comes this incredible gem from El Marada!!! Based on Suleiman Frangieh's (the grandfather, not the one we know now) statement "my country is always right" (which is the local translation of "my country, right or wrong" attributed to American Senator Charles Schurz - notice in the Lebanese version there is no "wrong" bit). So when El Marada wished to do an ad for their website (with the word in Arabic doubling as "position") it actually reads "my website/position is always right." Really, this IS spectacular.
Medco is offering some sort of a fidelity card, the ad itself is barely comprehensible and luckily it is only put in the stations itself because it needs all the time in the world to be read (compounded with that horrible "ma3ak" written in barely decipherable Arabic). Thumbs down all the way.
Meanwhile in preparation for independence day the army is showing a new ad which either a) hints to an old advertising by the Lebanese Forces or b) to a television talk show by Malek Mabtabi aired on LBC (and called "Red in bold lining"... Whereas the army ad says "Red Line in bold". For an insitution that inspires so much dignity, this is baffling to say the least.
Exotica, now that we have established that its new ad needs a manual of instructions to be understood, is clutching to its last straw to prove that it is a standalone and that it could be viable on its own. We still disagree.
Hey, now that is a new one!... Usually all Lebanese ask "where is the state?" (Wayn el dawle?) the answer in this new campaign by the council of ministers and the Ministry of Social Affairs in a program called "7alla" (which means "it's about time"!) with the heading: The state is near you, where are YOU?.... It targets people under poverty level and invites them to "register" (that's the big line you see in the ad) in the program.
Jammal Trust Bank, whi had everyone online drooling over their corporate campaign, now comes with its tactical executions (here is the home loan) which leaves much to be desired. I guess they simply could not replicate the success of the initial burst.... The proverb used here is "make your door larger, your friends will grow in number."
Josons (and therefore Clementine) have come up with a very decent one - it's the "shotgun that counts" - the double entendre of course is that it counts the bullets you shot and that it is "the only one worth having" - what I like about this ad is that it is a classic example of transofrming a boring brief into an interesting ad... Well done.
Oh!!! We missed you!!! Yes, in case you missed the Atat family being plastered all over town (their photos, not them - as plastered also means drunk!) here they are again... So OK, it is not Zein Al Atat but his brother Nader (who it transpires, is a singer)... Welcome back, really, it's been a while! :)
BLF goes on with a twisted logic "if you buy environmentally unfriendly goods, which are not made of recycled material, and who are a monument to over-consumption and a glorification of a lifestyle which harms the planet, we shall give part of the procedings of the card you used to the United Nations Development Program." Get it? I don't....
Another inconsistency: Masculin is positioning itself as the only recreational magazine in French for men... "AND WOMEN" (please read last line)... So "Masculin" is destined to women? How? The same way Elle is destined to men who want to peek at actesses parading in mini-dresses on red carpets?... Once more, please explain as I did not get it.
And last but not least - the LG maintenance service "that goes the extra mile" (note the international travelling labels stuck on the toolbox) - a very far cry from "loneliest guy in town!" by Maytag....
And so that was the mixed dozen!

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