Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

Super Bowl ads: The babe I liked & the one I didn’t February 7, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 7:49 AM
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First off, how many of you watched the Super Bowl? How many of you were more interested in the commercials than in the big game?

I could care less about the game. But the ads interest me. I didn’t see all of them, but I caught enough to be unimpressed.

I’d give “the best” award to the Doritos ad where an adorable baby rockets to snatch a bag of snacks and then munches on the chips alongside a smiling grandma. The ad was cute, memorable and I got it. I don’t always understand the commercials.

Teleflora gets my “the worst” ad distinction for its pure sex-infused commercial featuring an alluring woman encouraging men to give flowers for Valentine’s Day. “Give and you shall receive,” she purrs. “She” happens to be famous Brazilian model Adriana Lima.

Seriously, Teleflora marketing people, do not insult women by airing ads like this.

Also, and this really, truly, absolutely bugs me. A few years ago we bailed out the auto makers. Yet, they have millions of dollars to spend on Super Bowl advertising. What gives here?

Speaking of car ads, I didn’t like the Hyundai ad with the cheetah attacking a man. It reminds me too much of those animal-pursuing-animal/survival-of-the-fittest television documentaries.

A snippet from the new jcp print ad. Bold, bright and hip, wouldn't you agree?

OK, now lest you think I’m oozing negativity today, let’s turn our attention to retailer jcp, which I know as Penneys. The department store is making big changes, most noticeable to me in the magazine style advertising insert tucked inside my local daily newspaper on Super Bowl Sunday.

Changes were inevitable with former Apple executive Ron Johnson now serving as the new jcp CEO. And might I add, changes were needed to update the image of a retailer that seems more suited to my 79-year-old mother, or me, than to my 20-something daughters. I don’t really ever hear my daughters talk about shopping at Penneys. Typically they gravitate toward the more hip Target.

But it’s obvious, from the print and television ads I’ve seen, that jcp is trying to draw a younger, hipper crowd. Their new ads are crisp, clean, bold, bright and packed with motion.

Even more important, the company is eliminating those continual sales promotion mailings. Finally.

Instead of the previous complicated, ongoing, ever-changing sales system, the company is switching to a “fair and square” approach of everyday lower prices, month-long values and first and third Friday mark-downs. It all still sounds a bit too complicated. But anything has to be better than the previous marketing strategy.

So there you have it—my take on the world of advertising on Super Bowl Sunday.

WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS? Give me your input on the Super Bowl commercials and/or on jcp’s new approach to marketing and sales? I’d like to hear what you think, even if your take differs from mine.

© Copyright 2012 Audrey Kletscher Helbling


10 Responses to “Super Bowl ads: The babe I liked & the one I didn’t”

  1. Terry A. Says:

    I totally agree with you about that Teleflora ad. It was insulting, and it was making a terrible statement. (I will make a point of not using them in the future.)

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      This makes me wonder how florists who use Teleflora services feel about the commercial. Florists?

  2. As you know, I live in a small town – and JC Penney’s is about the best we’ve got. It will be interesting to see if/how this realy changes the store. I’ve liked the ten dollar off coupon I get frequently – I hope that continues! I didn’t watch even the commercials in the Super Bowl, so I can’t respond to that, but I do know that we saw the Ferris Beuller add on You Tube and my husband LOVED it – though what it was for, I don’t remember…which means, I suppose, that, as an ad, it failed!!!!

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      I agree about those $10 off coupons from Penneys. I appreciate those, too. I live in a big town, compared to yours, yet Penneys is our real only department store shopping option.

      I’m like you in that I can remember an ad, but not always what was being advertised, which equals failure. Sometimes I can’t figure out what the content has to do with the product being advertised.

  3. Jocelyn C. Says:

    The commercials were not impressive at all this year. I liked the one with the boy having to go the bathroom (but don’t remember what it was selling) and the baby Dorito ad. I’ve always hated the Go Daddy commercials and it’s blatent selling of sex. Same with the Teleflora ad. Don’t they realize young children watch this game. This is not what I want my children to see, which it why we are a PBS only house when watching television with Meghan.
    Actually, the game was the best part this year.
    As for JCP, they are heading in the right direction with the ads, but how are they reaching their target market? Most young adults do not get a paper delivered.

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      Well said regarding the Super Bowl commercials, Jocelyn. I thought the same thing about children viewing many of these ads.

      As for jcp’s ad campaign, that’s an excellent point with the print ads. I’ve also seen their new ads on television the past several evenings. Not sure what other venues they are pursuing to get their new image out there.

  4. Michael Says:

    The cheetah attack ad bothered me since cheetahs are really much more likely to run from a man than attack. It was NOT funny as someone intended.

  5. Lanae Says:

    I am a florist. We have teleflora as our wire service, that does not mean we get to have a say in the big Teleflora ad for the superbowl. I called my rep and had to leave a message that we sell flowers not sex. I was very pissed that the flowers seemed to be an afterthought. WE the florist sell flowers not sex. So from this florist you know how I feel.

    • Audrey Kletscher Helbling Says:

      I expected I would hear from you, dear sister. You summarized quite well how I expect most florists feel about the Super Bowl ad.

      I’m glad you called your Teleflora rep and told him exactly what you thought of the ad. I hope more florists do likewise as the ad does not reflect well on florists (even if you had no say in the commercial).

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