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

If You’re Going To Hijack, Do Something Interesting …

The ‘hijack’ strategy is now being used by so many brands that you have to ask if it’s even effective anymore.

OK, so when it’s done really well, it still has the power to impress … but so many brands are now doing it in such a half-baked way [often relying on the occasion to make the impact rather than the work] that a lot doesn’t even make a dent.

What’s even more annoying is this trend for brands to enter debates with no other purpose than to push their own agenda.

They don’t contribute to the debate.

They don’t add to the debate.

They don’t even care about the debate.

It’s all take, take, take … even though the media loves to claim “the brand is taking a stand about issues facing society”.

I’m looking at you Dove and your #AlternativeFacts ad … even though you’re far from being the only guilty party.

However there’s some brands who at least have the decency to make their exploitation amusing.

Sure, you could say Dove did that with the ad I’ve just criticised them for … but lets be honest, they’re not exactly known for going outside of their lane in terms of topicality and even though they could have easily turned this into a legitimate ad about their product credentials, they chose to go for the lowest common denominator. Possibly because it’s also award season soon. Possibly.

And that’s why I like this idea from Chinese teabag brand, inWE …

Yes, they are jumping on a bandwagon.

Yes, they are trying to gain free publicity from it.

But at no point do they try and claim it is some sort of political statement, which allows you to enjoy it for exactly what it is.

A bit of fun.

And the irony of this is it makes the brand far more likeable than all those others who try to hijack a cause or occasion to show they care.

Because most don’t, not in a way where they will sacrifice their profit for their cause.

Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely believe in the power of ‘brand purpose’.

But saying you care and committing to it are – sadly – very different things which is why it’s kind of refreshing to find a brand who isn’t trying to claim it’s saving the World but simply having some fun with what they do.

Which some would argue is a ‘brand purpose’ … but then they tend to also be the sort of folks that call humans, brands.

They’re not. They’re humans.

17 Comments so far
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Comment by John


Comment by DH

Trump loves hot water.

Comment by DH

I guess using Trumps image is easy when your country doesn’t recognize copyright.

Comment by DH

What is it with China and old, Western billionaires?

Comment by George

Rob’s not that old.

Comment by John

Chance for Rob.

Comment by DH

and its still more fucking appealing to millenials than that pepsi kendall jenner car crash fucking video.

Comment by andy@cynic

Yes, that is definitely one of the weirdest things I’ve seen in a long time.

Comment by Rob

Isn’t this all just borrowed interest? In the beginning it worked because it was new and the brands who did it had a point to make that was related to the event they were hijacking. Now so many do it in superficial ways that I think it is a sign of a lazy brand rather than a clever one.

Comment by Pete

But as you say, at the least the tea brand is having fun with it rather than claiming it makes some half assed political statement that isn’t really there.

Comment by Pete

if it wasnt for you and your fucking on topic comments pete, campbell may as well not write anything. keep it up, i like that campbell spends energy on something nobody but you uses. a bit like his creative briefs.

Comment by andy@cynic

Thank you Pete. Thank you so, so much. Ha.

Comment by Rob

trumps strategy for hot water is to launch tomahawk missiles. fucking worked for his russian investigation. fucking worked for thatchers election. fuck me, ive turned into ben elton. if i write a shit queen musical, launch a tomahawk at my fucking head.

Comment by andy@cynic

Diversion is the new hijacking.

Comment by Pete

thats what the thick fucks in adland call innovation. youll read about it in the upcoming wave of scam shit coming our way for cannes.

Comment by andy@cynic

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