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

Everything Wrong With Advertising In A Single Ad …
April 28, 2015, 6:25 am
Filed under: Crap Campaigns In History

I literally don’t know where to start.

It might be the most perfect bad ad ever created. EVER CREATED.

What am I talking about? This.

Yes, I know it’s a social media post, but it’s still an ad.

Something – let us not forget – that is supposedly created to help cultivate or encourage a commercially beneficially change of attitude or behaviour with a specific audience for a specific brand.

Through that lens, let’s look at that ad again.

Seriously, is there a single thing OK with it?

The headline is shit.

The premise of the headline is shit.

The language used in the headline is shit.

The picture is shit.

The ‘call to action’ of NEW PHONE. OWN IT. is shit.

The contrived ‘yoof’ tone when it’s so obviously coming from a uber-corporate company is shit.

Actually, ‘shit’ is the wrong word. It’s stupid. Stupid, stupid, stupid.

I absolutely hate every single thing about this piece of communication.

For me, it is pollution … pure and simple.

If anything, it has the absolute opposite effect Telstra would want from it.

It doesn’t make me want to buy a new phone.

It doesn’t make me want to buy a new phone from them.

It makes me not want anything to do with TELSTRA.

Triple whammy!

I know in the 50’s, the approach to marketing was ‘find ways to give your audience new news’ but apart from that being a different time in terms of consumerism, it was also a different time in terms of ability to engage with your audience.

In a World where the ability to connect and engage with an audience is almost constant, brands need to understand the secret to building some sort of audience value is knowing when to use that right as opposed to trying to brainwash them with meaningless shit like this.

For the record, that right should only be executed when you have something to say that directly addresses what people want to know/hear/learn from you … as opposed to what you want them to know/hear/learn from you.

Of course the reason this sort of rubbish happens is because there’s still a ton of brands out there who think social media is brilliant because it lets them ‘push’ all their marketing out to the World for free.

For them, effectiveness is not about ‘return’, it’s about hypothetical value which they will say is calculated by financial outlay, divided by potential audience size … which is handy, because this sort of work is going to achieve them absolute zero return.

Which is why I bet TELSTRA did this themselves.

At least I hope they did … because if an ad agency was behind it, then they need to go kill themselves immediately.

52 Comments so far
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I don’t even understand what it means. For a piece of communication executed by a communication company on behalf of a communication company, that’s triple bad.

Comment by Pete

When you say it like that, it’s even worse.

Comment by Rob

It really is impressive. Are they trying to communicate Telstra’s range of phones with inbuilt navigation, their data plans or their network coverage? Some may say this ad is giving the brand triple message benefit. They would be wrong in that assumption.

Comment by Pete

I know. It must take an incredible amount of hard work to produce something that terrible and unclear.

Comment by Rob

Perhaps as a result of a lot of ‘minor improvements’ from the client?

Comment by Ian Gee

why the fuck is a 13 year old boy driving? is the woman next to him his mum or some dirty milf taking him away from his family so she can fuck him then discard him, leaving him with emotional scars that will fuck his life for the rest of his days.

Comment by andy@cynic

Have you been reading US weekly again?

Comment by DH

im not the sad twat with the subscription to that pile of brain dyslexia.

Comment by andy@cynic


Comment by DH

campbell does. or did. sad fuck.

Comment by andy@cynic

Why? WHY?

Comment by DH

because hes a sad fucking fuck. how many more times do i have to tell you.

Comment by andy@cynic

I am still a subscriber. If it makes you feel any better, that is not the worst magazine I pay for. Not by a long shot.

Comment by Rob

and shes got clubbed fucking toes.

Comment by andy@cynic

Gold. Confusing. But still gold.

Comment by DH

my first thought, get those fat feet outta my face…
the picture itself is so distorted I can ‘t tell if it’s a boat he’s driving or a car…

and neither one of them is wearing a seat belt. GASP

the whole thing just looks thrown together, the sort of ad you ignore automatically.

Comment by judyt54

its nearly fucking may. 5 months into 2015 so i want to know if this is this one of your “hibernated posts” or is telstra even shitter than this ad suggests?

Comment by andy@cynic

Where’s the brand new handset and how is it helping Axl navigate?

Comment by John

stop asking perfectly reasonable questions doddsy.

Comment by andy@cynic

As bad as some ad agencies are, there is no way they would have made this. But there’s every chance a social media agency did.

Comment by DH

Most likely those social media agencies who have confused having access to plenty of data with being able to create content people care about.

Comment by Bazza

You’ve turned into Ben Elton.

Comment by Rob

Feet on the dashboard. Biting her lip. Driving fast through the streets. That’s not a road trip, that’s the search for a roadside toilet. Which is appropriate because this ad belongs in the toilet.

Comment by Bazza

its promoting golden showers?
thats just made it a billion times more fucking interesting.

Comment by andy@cynic

You’re still not being harsh enough on it Rob.

Comment by George

The “Sheila” has really, really ugly fucking toes. The “Bruce” looks 12 years old. This is obviously the work of a “Planner!” Otherwise known as a wanker.
Cheers/George “AdScam” Parker

Comment by George "AdScam" Parker

You’ve basically just repeated Andy’s comment. Which means [1] you two are far too similar and [2] you don’t read the comments either.

Comment by Rob

It looks the result of 15 rounds of focus groups.

Comment by Lee Hill


Comment by DH

One more Rob. Australia is a r/h drive country…

Comment by Mark

Oh yes, that makes it even better.

[for better, read worse]

Comment by Rob

Then I see this:

I’ll get my coat.

Comment by Rob

Don’t worry Rob. Telstra started it when they approved that mess.

Comment by Bazza

the fuckers slag you off not the ad. fucking typical big talking ad “journalist” pussies. have i just defended you? fuck.

Comment by andy@cynic

You were a bit hurtful Campbell. The chick who wrote the ad had a bad week that you can relate to due to recent events in your life and then sees lines like “kill themselves”… ouch.

Comment by keangus

Agreed – attack the work, not the individual.

Comment by John

Unless they’re from Nottingham. Obviously.

Comment by John

1. promotion of mobile phones while driving without reference to hands-free operation
2. driving without seatbelts on
3. body parts shown outside moving car.

I suggest a complaint to ASB just so we can read their justification of the ad.

Comment by smokingpony

I don’t know who you are Smokingpony, but I like your style.

Comment by Rob

This is some kind of “inner circle” ad. from my point of view–if its made to sell, thank you pony, mobile phones, perhaps a shot of the item itself, rather than the fat toed woman, would be more appropriate…unless someone really really LOVES fat toes…

Comment by judyt54

Oh dear oh dear

Comment by northern

“For the record, that right should only be executed when you have something to say that directly addresses what people want to know/hear/learn from you … as opposed to what you want them to know/hear/learn from you.’

I agree, but wonder how you square that circle in a world of feeds that demands frequency of contact.

Comment by John

It is almost halfway through 2015 and this peasant of a post has somehow unearthed itself up from some poor community manager’s archives …

Comment by trang

This game is fun! Let’s try this with Opinionated Sod’s website:

OK let’s look at that website again.

Seriously, is there a single thing OK with it?

The name is shit.
The graphic design is shit
The picture is shit
The 1998 typography selection is shit
The colours are shit
The drop shadows are shit
The mobile optimisation/lack of responsive design is shit
The resolution on a desktop is shit
The lack of a domain name is shit
The size of the text is shit
The User Experience is shit

Actually, ‘shit’ is the wrong word. It’s retarded, retarded, retarded.

I absolutely hate every single thing about this website and waste of space on the internet.

For me, it is pollution … pure and simple.

It doesn’t make me want to use the website.

It makes me not want anything to do with Opinions of an opinionated sod.

There, that was fun wasn’t it?

Comment by Ralph

And you’re right about all those things.

Difference is, I’m not doing it to drive revenue from it, which means it’s done for personal – not commercial – reasons.

Unlike that Telstra ad.

Comment by Rob

Guess Ralph is upset you pissed on his ad Rob.

Comment by DH

Ralph, that’s not insulting him. It’s flattering him. Try harder.

Comment by Billy Whizz

Told you Ralph. Got to try harder.

Comment by Billy Whizz

Dear Ralph. It appears Robert has upset you. Specifically his comment at the end of the post. If you want to be taken seriously, why are you resorting to the sort of name calling you would get in a school playground, especially when you agree that the ad is awful. Robert explained his reasoning from the context of commercial value, as far as I can tell, your justification is pettiness.

Comment by Pete

“Because if an ad agency was behind it, then they need to go kill themselves immediately.”

Do you realise that actual human beings put this piece of (albeit bad) creative together?

There are no words to describe what sort of scumbag public comment this is…

Comment by Ralph

Hey Ralph, I’m sorry you are offended by my words.

If you read this blog you would know that it is always over the top and expressed with a bit of tongue-in-cheek. That said, I do think the work I comment on is terrible – truly terrible – and I feel I am entitled to express that, especially as it is on my blog and I explain my reasons for feeling that way. [Which is contrary to your lovely review of this rubbish]

I agree that maybe the end point is nasty … that was more out of writing exuberance than any genuine malice and I’d hope any sensible person would understand that, but if I’ve offended you with that, then I am genuinely apologetic.

That said, if you don’t like my POV on stuff, you don’t have to read it … no one is forced to read my claptrap and I’ve done more than my fair share of horror so I’m an equal opportunity offender.

Comment by Rob

Oh … and at least I put my name on the stuff I write. I see you send people who click on your name link to google. Anything is easy to say or do when you don’t have to take responsibility for it.

Comment by Rob

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