Can you overstep the line to cut through the clutter and market your product?

10 Oct 2006

From Joan Isabella, StartupNation Radio consultant

This weekend, I came across two marketing concepts that made me ask the question WHAT ARE THESE PEOPLE THINKING?!?!?!. The first was in an article in the Detroit Free Press and it talked about a new energy drink called "Cocaine". The spokesperson for the company said, "It’s a fun name." I don’t know about you, but I know people whose lives were ruined by cocaine and I don’t want to have a product in my home that glorifies the drug.

I was on a plane and started to read the airline magazine. In it was an ad for a seminar on the art of negotiation. It was an expensive pull out print with a cover page announcing "It’s like steroids for your career." As far as I know, steroids are a bad idea unless you have poison ivy or your doc prescribes them for inflammation.

I’m still thinking about the Quiznos commercial with the little rat-like characters. I didn’t know what Quiznos was before them, but I had no desire to eat food promoted by little rats either. Now, over a year later, I still remember the spot every time I see a Quiznos. My husband and son still sing the song the rats sang in the commercial. And I even ate there once at their behest.

So, I ask you–are these commercials a success? They may cut through the clutter. But will you use products that remind you of rodents, or glorify drugs.

What do you think?

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