The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]

Wanking For Good …
March 26, 2010, 6:29 am
Filed under: Comment

OK, so I’m being facetious … but I’m getting a bit sick of all these brands jumping on the ‘social cause’ bandwagon.

Don’t get me wrong, anything that helps those less fortunate is a good thing … but when the intent feels purely for marketing purposes, it makes me feel a little bit queasy.

At least the companies who donate masses of cash to charities so they can write it off against tax don’t run ads saying how compassionate they are … however I’m seeing more and more brands doing campaigns that basically state the same thing:


[* Where ‘X’ is a word linked to their specific category]

However it doesn’t take Stephen Hawking to realise the underlying message is actually:

Of course Bono’s Project Red was/is probably the poster boy for this sort of approach – and as much as I think there’s some major flaws with the approach – at least Mr Irish realised the opportunity to develop an umbrella scheme to basically attract money from the champagne socialists / label whores out there.

However I’ve come across possibly one of the worst examples of this approach and it’s from my favourite brand extension developers, Mont Blanc.



Are they fucking kidding???

But hang on, there’s more …

Mont Blanc believe the ability to read and write is a fundamental human right and they’re deeply committed to the culture writing.

On one hand that’s pretty obvious given the fuckers make pens … however if they really gave a shit, why the hell would they make their stuff so bloody expensive rather than bring out a ‘BIC’ which could be given to school kids around the World?

Oh I know why, because they don’t really give a fuck … because let’s face it, as much as a million bucks may sound a lot, when one of their pens costs SEVEN HUNDRED AND THRITY THOUSAND DOLLARS, it’s not really that much to give at all.

As I said, I accept that any help is good help, but as I wrote here a while back, it doesn’t take much scratching to realise many of the words and platitudes being spouted by these socially conscience brands are closer to the work of a conman, than a carer.

26 Comments so far
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just think how much money could be raised if parents sponsored their 13 year old sons right arm? theyd be fucking trillions flowing to charity each year. come on unicef, pull your fucking finger out.

why the fuck would there be a pen that costs almost a million bucks? people think advertising is full of overpaid, underworked pieces of shit but were a pimple on the ass of piss takers which makes me wonder why the fuck i didnt go and make nibs at fucking mont wanking blanc.

Comment by andy@cynic

and why does the ad look like the only thing being signed is the cheque to the paedophile club for the poor little fuckers who have their photos strewn across mr pervert fuckers desk?

signature for sickos, brought to you by those lazy, overcharging and bandwagon exploiting fuckers at mont blanc.

Comment by andy@cynic

For a PEN?

Who would need that? (Apart from the ex-Bouchers on cheque signing day)

Comment by Rob Mortimer

Like you mention, all help is good help but signature for good is pretty bad.

Now I know some of their pens cost almost as much as their entire 6 years of donations to unicef, this actually makes me feel worse about the brand and I wasn’t too smitten with them in the first place.

By the way, your “illusion of compassion” post was a great read, you should do a greatest posts list because there’s some real gems on here.

Comment by Pete

Oh and your point is spot on.

Comment by Rob Mortimer

I use crayola. Hasn’t done me any harm.

Comment by Billy Whizz

That’s debatable Billy. VERY debatable.

Comment by Rob

Could I ask where you saw this advertisement?

Despite it being for an important cause, I agree its execution and purpose could have been better articulated and demonstrated.

Comment by Lee Hill

Not sure – probably some inflight mag – which means probably YOUR inflight mag Lee, ha.

Comment by Rob

I’m guessing this isn’t the right way to go about getting that fucking 730k pen Mr. Campbell. Top marks for effort though

Comment by Sam Ismail

I think you need to put some responsibility on the charities as well for vetting brands and while we’re at it branded celebrities.

It takes me about 5 mins in a meeting with a company or a celebrity to figure out whether they are genuine. The 5 mins is the speel about how much they admire your work – the rest of the meeting is the negotiation on the Return On PR for generally a very small donation. That’s when you know to walk away…

I find a few too many charities lose sight of their cause and are equally at fault for being PR hounds.

Comment by Juanita

Didn’t stop you taking Ricky “publicity hound” Gervais’ cash though did it J?

You can hit me tonight.

Comment by Rob

I’m banking on Mont Blanc believing all publicity is good publicity Sam.

Comment by Rob

I could buy a hell of a lot of toilet paper with 730K.

Good morning.

Comment by Marcus

Given they’ve branched out from ink to aftershave, you might just find they’ll be launching Mont Blanc loo paper in the next 12 months at the bargain price of just US$10. A sheet.

Guess we can look forward to “shit for good” launching in the not too distant future.

Comment by Rob

Shitting for good is, well, excellent.

Comment by Marcus

I’m quite disappointed the Indian restaurant society didn’t think of it … though there was an Aussie campaign called “eat curry against racism” or something and I’m not even joking.

Comment by Rob

flushing for good would, of course, be more effective.

Comment by Marcus

Brought to you by Toilet Duck.

Comment by Rob

as an idea, I think it’s ready to go.

Comment by Marcus

We are CSR geniuses.

Comment by Rob

The quintessential post that captures the self-love that pervades this blog.

Comment by John

Just realised what Mont could be cockney ryhming slang for…

Comment by Rob Mortimer

Doddsy you’re all about self-love so judge not baby

Comment by Sam Ismail

Went to the link to see the pen, which led me to the worlds most expensive pencil at $12,000+. The world has gone fucking mad…all you need a box of Black Warriors. And I agree with you completely about the intent.

Comment by adchick

12 grand for a pencil. A PENCIL? I feel completley and utterly depressed …

Comment by Rob

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