Monday, October 12, 2009

This drives me mad.

For at least the last couple of years, General Motors has spent in excess of $2 billion a year on marketing. (They are spending less this year, but are still on track to spend something like $1.6 billion.)

Now here's my question: For all those dollars spent, can you remember a single commercial done by GM?

Naturally with a track-record of such stellar ineffectuality, GM's VP, Sales is able to leave his job and become CMO of Allstate Insurance.

This is absolutely mind-boggling to me. It's like putting the people responsible for Love Canal in charge of the Environmental Protection Agency.

I'm sure the executive in question was able to "spin" his accomplishments and so put them in a positive light. I'm sure he talked about efficiencies gained, about media metrics, about use of product placement and branded entertainment and how he dialed up digital. I'm sure his dossier ticked all the boxes and he interviews very well.

A lot of agencies work on the same principles. They tell you how effective they are. I recently worked at a place which seemed to claim 117 million media impressions for every fortune-cookie-sized ad they produced. I always kept asking, 'how then is it possible then that I've never seen any of these ads?" I would ask the same thing of GM's departing VP, sales. With all your accomplishments, how come GM's reputation isn't just in the toilet, it's made it all the way to the sewage treatment plant.


Teenie said...

Smooth talk, big words ad a fancy title can take you far, I guess...

Phyllis said...

One, for the music.
Cadillac and Led Zeppelin: "Been a Long time since I rock and rolled".
Nice nod to now-old rockers and the new Cadillac