#OrchidsandOnions Special Section

#OrchidsandOnions: Hunter's ad hits the target

Spot-on: Taps right into impulse young people have to change the world; Onion for dishonest advertising goes to insurancesave.co.za
#OrchidsandOnions: Hunter's ad hits the target

With the benefit of maturity, I sometimes think that life is one big cosmic joke... and those laughing the loudest without realising they are the subjects, are the youth.

Every generation, as Mike and the Mechanics once sang, blames the one before – and the one certainty about life is that every younger generation thinks they have all the answers, or that they can question the answers of their elders.

Why life is a joke with a youthful punchline is the reality that it, life, is circular: most of us eventually end up at the same place our parents were - and we sometimes don’t even realise it.

The ability to galvanise the young mind is particularly valuable in advertising – and especially if you’re marketing the products which younger people can afford and which give their life a lift.

Like booze.

Hunter’s Cider is a youth brand – no arguing with that. So the latest commercial for the drink put together by its ad agency partner Grey/WPP Liquid, taps right into that impulse of young people to change the world.

So, we see when a cool dude walks into a bar and gets offered a beer, he refuses and orders a Hunter’s instead. Cue anger from the man who is clearly the director of what appears to be a beer ad.

“You can’t change the script!” he yells, but cool dude proceeds to do exactly that, ditching all the cardboard-cutout dreariness of the bar and its staid patrons. He and his crew replace them with Hunter’s, a funky new bar and cast of hip young things who positively radiate energy.

As the metamorphosis takes place, the director makes a last-ditch effort: You can’t change the script! I just did, is the retort.

And therein lies the message: Hunter’s will help you change the script and, as the punchline says, “refresh the rules”.

It’s simple but makes a point which will resonate with the target market and its sense of rebelliousness and charting its own course.

Orchids to Hunter’s and Grey/WPP Liquid.

The fact that this ad would not make me rush to Hunter’s shows its Orchid value: I am not the target market. Focused marketing is always effective marketing.

Insurance misclaims

Am I noticing an increasing tendency for brands to try to mislead customers? I had a go at Mahindra recently for claiming its XUV is the “safest car in Africa” when it is not – but that ad was at least based on one, real-world, although very limited, crash test.

On Facebook this week, I saw out-and-out con artistry at work by an outfit called insurancesave.co.za.

Using what looks like an official Toyota photo of its new Hilux double cab bakkie, the ad proclaims: “My Toyota car insurance was R500, now it’s R355”, going on to proclaim that South Africans are getting HUGE (in capitals) reduction insurance premiums through them.

Using the Hilux image will not only get you sued by Toyota, but it is also grossly misleading. The only Toyota you could insure for R500 a month, never mind R355, would be a 15-year-old Corolla. Insurance for the Hilux shown would be at least three times that figure.

A smelly Onion for dishonest advertising to insurancesave.co.za. I would worry about whether I might not get conned somewhere else along the line dealing with them.

And judging by the comments on Facebook from people who had been unable to secure these amazing deals (because they don’t earn enough), I wouldn’t touch this business with a bargepole.

*Note that Bizcommunity does not necessarily share the views of its contributors - the opinions and statements expressed herein are solely those of the author.

About Brendan Seery

Brendan Seery has been in the news business for most of his life, covering coups, wars, famines - and some funny stories - across Africa. Brendan Seery's Orchids and Onions column ran each week in the Saturday Star in Johannesburg and the Weekend Argus in Cape Town.

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