Move over Tina Fey (only a little) [Update: Pat feels I need to make sure everyone knows this is hyperbole: Tina Fey is still the Matriarch of Comedy], Sarah Haskins is in town.
In my effort to see everything on the internet, I have stumbled across what may be the funniest advert pundit segment ever : Target Women, starring Sarah Haskins.
Basically, Sarah makes fun of topical advertising directed at women for 3 minutes at a time. At this point, I’ve watched one on cleaning, yogurt, birth control, feeding your family, Sarah Palin, etc. (the etc. is for the one I’ve clearly forgotten). Sarah Haskins expertly (and at times, with a couple well-placed crude-etries) dissects the messages under the advertising to compel women to buy. I love this for two reasons: first, because it’s hilarious; second, because I have a nearly psychopathic love-hate relationship with advertising.
Some may know that, before I was at Tyndale, I was in Business Marketing. There, I learned how to find (or create) a target market and show them the benefits (or trick them using their own norms and morays) of buying my product. Couple that with what I learned about Public Relations and now I don’t believe anything that comes from the media, ever. Advertising is manipulative, deceitful, ugly and unnatural. Take some time and read a copy of AdBusters, and you’ll understand my anger, grief, and torment … until I see something really innovative, like Waking Up Hannah, by Dove.
I like Dove’s advertising over the last few years, because while it is selling an image and state of mind (oh right, and a product), at least it is a wholly positive one. For me, that’s enough of a compromise, for now.
Is advertising redeemable? I hope so, because today I really like it. If we could make advertising reflective of cultures, and not creative of cultures, I think our world would be a better place.