Friday, February 13, 2009

bad marketing

sorry, everyone. bad marketing is everywhere. it's like that movie, the sixth sense. except i would whisper, "i see bad marketing. only the people who're doing it don't know it's bad. they walk around like nothing's wrong." i might not be as convincing as haley joel osment, but that doesn't mean it's not so.

let's take my #1 offender, capital one, which has held that dubious distinction for some time -- well, at least since the stupid ads broke in 2005. at that time, ad critic steve hall did a pretty interesting review, with which i completely concurred. i'm sure both of us thought the ads were not long for this world, but in fact they've continued, and gotten worse (although the always annoying david spade is no longer present, which i suppose would have helped if the premise had been improved. but as it is, it really doesn't matter. with or without spade, these ads still suck.)

here's another reason capital one is guilty of bad marketing -- there's got to be more to the campaign than just ads, even if they're great ads. there's zero integration of the creative across the touchpoints where the brand contacts the consumer. check out the website -- it looks like... well, a bank's website. or the collateral -- nothing to do with the goths, the aliens, or the web presence. it's totally different approach. or the cards themselves, even. they look like ... a credit card. even though i hate the concept, i'd actually give the campaign credit if they pulled through the creative to the rest of these things.

my father-in-law, one of the smartest guys i know, hates these ads but admits he has a cap one card because it's the only banking organization that doesn't charge you a fee when you use the card outside the u.s., and my inlaws travel alot, so that could add up to some big $s. to me, that's a USP that ought to be front and center, not alien creatures.

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