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Being a mom is the hardest job in the world. But it's also the best. This Procter & Gamble commercial honors everything that all moms do to help their children suceced.
Tags: P&G, brandstrategy, commercial, critique
If you're a parent, like I am, in addition to your 'day job', life is filled with the challenges and responsibilities of caring for your children. Perhaps even more profoundly, we are pressed by the demands of helping our kids be the very best they can be. All kids have dreams, and to a large degree, it falls on our shoulders to help make them come true. This delightful ad nicely explores this universal dynamic, following a few athletes from childhood through them realizing their Olympic dreams.
This is a really special piece of advertising that does most of the important things that great advertising must do - very well. It is literally busting at the seams with emotionally resonant material: images, music, copy. As a parent, I feel the connection between mother and child. I share in the unadulterated joy that they feel for their kids! Again, if you are a mom (or even a dad!), then through the vehicle of the upcoming 2012 Olympics, this ad celebrates a universal aspect of parenthood. Although almost no one who sees this ad will - literally - be able to relate to the Olympic level of aspirations, almost everyone will deeply resonate with doing things to invest in your children - even if its just waking them for school, or taking them to tee ball, or girl scout meetings.
The treatment of the brand in the commercial is very subtle. The ad doesn't egotistically proclaim (or infer) that an athlete's success is a direct result of their use of, say, Tide. It just presents the P&G brands as a relevant, day-to-day part of the mothers' over-all effort to move their kids forward. While normally I might bristle at this uber subtle degree of brand presence, this ad just works. It may break some of my traditional "rules", but it's just done so darn well that it pulls it off!
I've got to say another word about the use of emotion here. This is one of the best examples of a brand strategically intertwining itself in a powerful emotional "blanket" relevant to their consumer. It leverages the love and hopes that every mother has for their children and insinuates their brand and product into the story in a relevant and meaningful way. This is what every ad should do to maximize its impact. Sure, it may be more difficult in some categories that might not obviously lend itself to emotion, but therein lies the great advertising challenge. This ad is chock full of emotion and is so strong as a result.
P&G very easily could have just told a good story creatively and put their logo at the end. Unfortunately, that's what so many advertisers do. Instead, they crafted a story relevant to the context (in this instance, the Olympics) and found a way to weave the brand - and most important, their consumers - into the story in a way that mattered. The brands are not mere props. This isn't just a product placement. The ad integrates everything together - with the power of emotion - to deliver a strong message directly to their core consumers. Bravo!
This is going to be one of those ads that people are going to want to see over and over again, and in so doing - the branding will seat itself in consumers' minds nicely. With something this good, and in an Olympic year, I can imagine that there will be considerable media spent behind this - so the subtlety might be compensated for by frequency. As well, P&G's Olympic branding will most likely be underscored by network "bumpers" so everyone will "get" the connection even more than just seeing the ad as is.
5 Stars. Superb work! It's a great ad.
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