Chuck Nyren, at his Advertising to Baby Boomers blog, takes exception to this Centrum Silver commercial:
I couldn’t agree more that, as Chuck writes, the spot is:
“Kind of clever. A bit hokey. Actually, a Cocoon knock-off. But cute.
“Of course, as a piece of persuasion - it fails. The spot is rife with ageism, and (even worse) portrays the target market as a bunch of delusional imbeciles…”
Chuck then goes on to explain how he would improve the commercial:
“These folks look to be in their seventies and eighties,” he writes. “As an exercise, let's refashion this ad for Boomers by making it appealing and persuasive [emphasis added].
Centrum Silver should hire Chuck; his commercial (go read it) would not only be more entertaining, it would remove the implication that elders are dotty, old fools. But, here is my question for Chuck: why rework it to show boomers in the final shot? What’s wrong with octogenarians playing strip poker?
Chuck would have the last shot be of “four people in their fifties/sixties, still looking pretty good - maybe with a few potbellies, a bald head, etc.”
I understand his blog is restricted to talking about baby boomers who currently top out at age 61, but the age of the people in the final shot is not what makes the commerical a failure. By replacing them with younger poker players, Chuck has removed the commercial’s original ageism and replaced it with a different kind.
In his TGB Interview last month, Chuck said:
“At the moment, just targeting anybody over forty is good news. Eventually, there will be more focused targeting. (Or at least I hope so.)”
This commercial targets every older person from boomers on up and in doing so, shows some very old people having some silly fun. That, it seems to me, ought to be Chuck’s kind of good news. There are few enough octogenarians on television.
[EDITORIAL NOTE] The new Elder Storytelling Place blog is taking off nicely. There have been half a dozen story submissions since Friday which will be posted one at a time over the coming days. Please take a look at today’s story from Cowtown Pattie, and we are eager to receive your submissions.