I love commercials. I know, it’s weird. Most people pay for DVR’s so they can by-pass commercials, however, i just sit and critique every one of them. I love them so much that I can recognize just about any commercial someone refers to – it’s pretty bad.
When I watch these commercials I notice things – little things – however, in the minds of the people who made them, they are not little. They are actually a bunch of strategic methods by PR professionals to get a certain type of people interested in whatever is being advertised.
For instance – Let’s examine the new Tide commercials. A while ago, there was a Tide commercial that featured a young, white married couple folding a large sum of laundry which we find out is due to their triplets. Not a big deal, right? False. For a while, Tide has had the reputation of “a rich person’s laundry soap” generally because it is one of the more expensive brands of detergent. A rich person’s soap with a white couple advertising it – see where I’m going with this? In our society, rich is associated with white (You would think we would have progressed from that viewpoint by now).
So guess what I just saw on TV this past weekend? A brand new Tide commercial – featuring a hispanic couple who sort of insinuates (and might I add, with very thick and noticeable accents – ironic?). And what is funny, is that both of these new commercials were alternated between each commercial break of the particular show I was watching. So do you think Tide is trying to reach a new crowd now?
As a PR representative you need to know about culture, ethnicity and race if you want to sell your product to everyone. You need to include all race’s and all ethnicities in order to receive good feedback, and ultimately, good sales.
If it were me and I was the PR rep for a large organization determining how to best broadcast a commercial in order to gain the highest profit, I would research to find out what the most watched nightly television shows are, and find out which type of people watch it most. I would research things such as, does the X-Factor have multiple hispanic contestants? If so, there is a good chance that will attract a large hispanic fan base – so my commercial would feature a hispanic and I would make sure it is shown every week during the time of the X-Factor.
If you want to sell or advertise something, you need to know when and to whom to do it.