Before we kick off with what 2018 has in store for advertising, let’s review some of the 2017 marketing disasters
We bet you instantly though Pepsi and Kendall Jenner. And you wouldn’t be wrong. That was indeed one of the biggest campaign fumbles in the past decade. But let us joggle through your memory and bring to light a few other flub-ups that would like to be forgotten.
Trying to use Black Lives Matter to sell sugary soft drinks shouldn’t sound like a good idea. And it wasn’t. In Pepsi’s Content Creators League commercial, the model ditches a photoshoot to join a march happening on the street. Jenner saves the day when she hands a police officer a can of Pepsi. It was crucified on social media, mocked on SNL, and ultimately pulled from air. Advertising agencies seized the opportunity to say something like this would have never happened had a shop been involved. (And they’re right). PepsiCo Global Beverage Group President Brad Jakeman left six months later to form a consultancy, and told Ad Age the spot was “the most gut-wrenching experience of my career.”
People were not lovin’ the McDonald’s U.K. Filet O’Fish campaign. A commercial from Leo Burnett showed a young boy sorrowfully asking his mom about his deceased father. After a long minute and fifteen seconds of the boy learning he’s the exact opposite of his dad, it’s revealed they shared a McFavorite for the Filet O’Fish. Hook line and sinker for the haters who said this was exploiting bereavement to sell sandwiches.
This campaign fails worldwide. Big Tobacco agreed to run anti-smoking ads on TV for the first time since 1971 as a consequence of the cigarette industry’s master settlement agreement. The campaign began in November and are the least convincing you will ever see. Plain black text on a white background with mandated warnings.
Fragrance Ads In General
Granted some aren’t awful, but Chanel may have been huffing something other than perfume. Its Gabrielle fragrance campaign shows Kristen Stewart unraveling herself from a cocoon of sheer to then punch through a wall of diamond-like substance all to the soundtrack “Runnin’ (Lose It All)” by The Naughty Boy. Aren’t they paying women in Hollywood enough these days?