Monday, February 23, 2009
I was wondering about how some marketing departments go about decisioning.
Historians some decades from now will argue about what to call the era we are now tumbling through. We've had "The Gilded Age," "The Gay 90s," "The Roaring Twenties" and so forth. I'm for calling this "The Era of Bad Judgment." Or "The Group-Think Depression." Or "The Hubris Generation."
I just came upon this in The New York Times. Grant me a little spleen and then I will talk a bit about advertising. "Though seven major financial firms lost more than $100 billion since 2007, they have paid their top executives $464 million in performance pay since 1995."
OK, let's switch gears to the marketing geniuses behind the re-branding of Tropicana. I won't go into a peroration about the oft' derided Peter Arnell whose agency created the new campaign for Tropicana and designed its new packaging. Arnell does a dang good job deriding himself. Told Tropicana was going back to its old packaging, Arnell said "“Tropicana is doing exactly what they should be doing...I’m incredibly surprised by the reaction," [but] "I’m glad Tropicana is getting this kind of attention." Read the whole album of asininity here: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/23/business/media/23adcol.html?ref=business
What amazes and amuses me about the stupidity of Arnell's work is the "decisioning" that must have taken place during the approval process. Let's take a moment and consider the tagline for the brand. "It's a natural." I can hardly for the life of me think of a more obvious or banal tag for a "natural" brand.
A Google search of the phrase in quotations yields 392,000 hits. The line is used by the Biological Weed Control Committee of the Weed Science Society of America (the first hit), by a Glendale, CA provider of natural gas for cars (hit two) and, hit three, Rev. John Carmichael of the Church of Scientology on the efficacy of drug-free child-birth.
That alone, you'd think, would kill a stupid, meaningless, over-used, un-original tagline. But decisioning kept it alive.
Posted by George Tannenbaum at 9:11 AM