Random Annoyances: Patronising TV Ads

Monday 14 May 2012 @ 7:35 pm

Watching a pointless TV ad earlier this evening about Colgate toothpaste, it struck me just how patronising most companies are towards consumers. I mean really, they treat us like idiots and expect us to slavishly lap up whatever drivel they’re peddling on TV.

Take the Colgate ad for example, it has some annoyingly breezy brunette with a handheld camcorder claiming that she’s gonna use Colgate that evening to see how long it keeps her teeth clean. Cut to the morning after the night before and said brunette has just “woken” up, looking of course like she’s about to sashay down the catwalk in her PJ’s. Turning to the camcorder, she rubs her teeth so the audience can hear the fabricated squeaky noise and then finishes with a smirk declaring that it must be true, Colgate does indeed keep your teeth squeaky clean.

Does the manufacturer honestly think the audience are stupid and will believe this nonsense? Are hoards of eager tooth jockeys about to plunder the shelves of their local chemist just to stock up on toothpaste purely on the remit of a half-assed patronising TV ad that treats the audience as if they eat soup with a fork?

With the advent of the Internet and social media, consumers are more savvy and demanding so these types of brainless ads no longer cut the mustard. In Colgate’s case, never mind squeaky teeth or a giggling airhead brunette who looks about as genuine as a three dollar bill, it would have been far more accurate to run an ad highlighting just how expensive the damn stuff is.