They don’t care. Why should you?

If you’ve ever wanted to know just how little brands care about their consumers (that means you) just turn on the television. Now wait for an ad-break. When it starts, don’t get up. Don’t PVR. Just watch the ad-break (novel, I know). If you’re lucky (and I use that term loosely) you’ll see an ad for one of the following: Mr Muscle, Oust, Head & Shoulders or Olay. Now, what do you notice about the ads for these brands?

They’re all dubbed…badly.

In one ad-break there were no less than 3 badly dubbed ads (the Head & Shoulders ad with the Russian doctor is particularly awful). It was enlightening. These brands clearly don’t care enough to spend money on shooting new ads for the South African market. They don’t care enough about you to go out and find out how you speak, what you eat, what matters to you. Instead they treat you (a potential consumer), like a cypher – a nameless, faceless entity that should just be grateful that these brands exist so you can spend your hard-earned money on them.

Now not all bad dubbing is…well…bad. Here’s an example of when it’s really cool (apologies for the poor resolution. The guy who bootlegged it clearly didn’t have a tripod):

Still funny.

But it’s not funny when brands (who should employ advertising agencies that know better) decide to cheapen their image with it. That’s essentially what they’re doing. And if they’re cutting corners on something as important as their public image, where else are they cutting corners? 

Brands need to understand that in the future their very existence is going to rely on talking to and listening their consumers. They need to be accessible and relevant to their consumer and so their communication needs to be crafted along those lines. Clearly the brands mentioned (and their advertising agencies) don’t care to invest in communicating with you on your level. Should you care enough about them to give them your money?

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3 thoughts on “They don’t care. Why should you?

  1. this is exactly why i’m instantly put off by restaurants with typos / spelling errors on their menus, and avoid certain food brands that have made the same mistake – if they can’t be bothered to get the basics right, what are they fudging at a higher, more important level?

  2. I feel your pain bro! its really a joke when they consider us, a big emerging market no less, as a country of faceless consumers who will apparently take no notice of this sort of advertising. I guarantee you the brand leaders for products like this still think we have lions roaming around our back gardens. Its sad!

    But they’re not all like this, more often local agencies are being given the freedom to execute briefs based on their interpretation of the message the brand is trying to communicate. this task is made hard when a brand has one single minded message for all the countries it operates in, Axe is a good example of this. I recently did work as a student for them on their Urban Black Youth campaign for which they had to use the message that is used around the world “Axe make girls do crazy things.” now take that and make it relevant to the target market? You think its easy? It actually is. When you take the time to figure it out. I think this is all we can ask of these brands is that they take the time to get to know us!

  3. @Ads – precisely! It doesn’t take much effort to get the basics right. And if those are found wanting it doesn’t inspire much confidence in the rest of the brand’s manifestations.

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