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The Swirl: July 24, 2017

Have we mentioned it’s hotter than Hades out there? Yeah? K, just checking. We’ll be staying inside for our lunch hour, jealously Insta-stalking our coworkers’ beach vacations. Don’t mind us. In this edition: a good ugly cry, over-sharing, and a news flash.

WORD OF THE WEEK

Friendly Branding (v.) - the act of humanizing brands to engage consumers in a more personal or authentic way; also what some consider a shallow or limiting approach to branding that ignores fundamental facts about the world we live in. Has humanizing brands gone too far?

For the ugly criers...

BROUGHT TO YOU BY GUEST SWIRLER: RACHEL BAKER, COPYWRITING INTERN

SwirlNotes: Once upon a time, it was unusual to cry during an ad. Now “sad-vertising” has given a rise to the weepy. Taco Bell Canada took on this genre with their new commercial, “Better Together.” Because what’s sadder than two bros who haven’t had time to chill this week? Nothing. Cue the slow motion van door opening.

WHY IT MATTERS

Tear-jerking doccumercials are everywhere. Today do tears = views? When it comes to “sad-vertising,” people are torn. There’s a fine line between tapping into a consumer’s emotions and making them sob uncontrollably at a Coors Light ad. (What makes someone compelled to buy beer may make someone else roll their eyes.) And Taco Bell for one has had enough. More laughing, less crying they say! By playing off a trope we all recognize, Taco Bell creates the perfect doccumercial parody. Quesaritos for all!

For the oversharers...

SwirlNotes: Fruit of the Loom is killing the humor approach to underwear. Their most recent ad features an "oversharer" telling everyone and their best friend about how great her underwear are. Awkward. The main message: Fruit of the Loom underwear is so great you’ll want to talk about it, but please don’t.

WHY IT MATTERS

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his ad is one of three that really pushes the "breathability" of their underwear. Kinda awkward, right? There’s no denying this is a hard subject to talk about. Doing it right takes a lot of creativity, and we think Fruit of the Loom is on the right track. They get their main point across by taking themselves a little less seriously. Instead of making us feel uncomfortable, they make us laugh. That’s what we call a win. Even better, the whole idea was generated when the creative team realized how uncomfortable they got when talking to people about breathable underwear. Further proof that insights can come from anywhere.

For those with a sweet tooth...

SwirlNotes: You might know that lime Skittles were replaced by green apple back in 2013. Well… news flash! The brand is bringing back the OG “green” flavor for a limited lime. We mean, time. And only at Walmart. Go on & get ‘em before they’re gone.

WHY IT MATTERS

Watch out Armageddon, ‘Lime-ageddon’ is taking over. And that’s not fake news. We’re a big fan of news reporter bloopers. There’s just something about word slip-ups, uncontrollable on-screen giggles and technological difficulties. Hilar. And we love the use of it to promote a limited edition brand move, especially from a public relations perspective. Not to mention the strategic use of influencers and Sur-Lime-al Kits to get consumers to select Walmart stores to satisfy their sweet tooth. Taste the rainbow.

FINAL FOOD FOR THOUGHT

Are you solving the right problem? Turns out the best solutions keep the end user in mind.