It was a rainy Saturday morning, didn’t have much to do, as usual you could hear clearly the constant noise emanating from the neighbors house, since the kids were all on holidays, it was as it should be” Give me my ball joooor, Mummy look at Akin oh he is touching my toy” this was the norm during these weekends but today was worst, as they had thier cousins visiting. It was time to recline and watch Saturday football matches that where lined up. Today “Chelsea” my favorite team, hold on, permit me to scream “UP BLUEEEES” was playing Manchester United, the game had been talked about all week, many who played the betting game, had staked on Chelsea having a straight win, some played safe and went on both teams to score. It was that kind of Saturday.
I waited patiently for the wife to finish cooking that Saturday rice, which is like a religious observation in most Nigerian houses, today was taking too long as my tummy kept grumbling and telling me to hurry up, well “its not my fault”. I decided to switch on the TV and see what was showing on local stations, as i had already had my fill with the constant repetitive films been aired on the DSTV channels. Then i stumbled on an advert which to me was a blatant waste of company money. A group of young teenagers running around town,to avoid been caught by supposed bad guys, looking all gestapo in looks and at the end of the advert, one of the teenage guy holds up the company logo that automatically came from only God knows where. There i was staring at the TV, mouth agape and bewildered at the concept and idea been passed across, wondering why on planet earth i would be prompted to buy this product based on what i had just watched. To be honest i kept cursing and swearing at the so called company who wrote the brief and did the TVC(television commercial), with about a decade in advert placement and buying on local and cable stations, i had left the scene and moved on to higher callings. While grumbling and asking why things had totally changed in passing out the message of advertising along, i looked back at what i grew up with and what applies now, they say its the jet age but what is so “jet-ty” if i may use the word, about the concept these new young guns come up with, really it just freaks me out.
A good advert should sell the brand, make you hungry for it, possibly even make you become it. The definition of advertising is “ any public notice, as a printed display in a newspaper, short film on television, announcement on radio, etc, designed to sell goods, publicize an event, etc
. Shortened forms : ad, advert”
What we see today on TV is the opposite, we see a lot of good graphics, lovely clothing and scenery, then crappy ideas to sum it all up in contrast to the reason for advertising which is to “SELL”, i wonder how much sales these crappy adverts have brought. I grew up in the times of “Imperial Leather” advert, that while watching it you would wonder if the soap was made for just the rich. You see the mom and kids taking their bath in such luxury we practically begged mummy to buy if for us next time, even mummy was in tune with the ads, because she didn’t even object to our demand. I grew up in the times of watching that “OMO,OMO, super blue OMO, washes brighter and it shows”, we saw an advert showing why we should buy the product, itemizing its specific qualities and the joy it brings to the user, that was Epic and worth it. I grew up in the days of classic adverts like LUX and “Patti Boulaye” back then you didn’t have to bleach your skin to make sense, or look for light skinned ladies to play any part, today i wonder if Nigerians are whites or Black people? or when you hear kids singing to the “JOY” soap advert, lets not forget the “SUPER VISCO STATIC” advert that was even recently resurrected and trust me the message was still clearly passed across.
Watching these old adverts just got me all Mushy inside. Fast-forward to today all we see are so called stars used as brand ambassadors and knowing fully well that they are not actors but musicians how do these ad agencies expect them to play the needed role to make sense, why not give the role to actors who know the trade and let the musicians do the soundtrack for these silly advertorials. I grew up in the days of “spread,spread, blue band on bread”, “wise men bank with UBA, wise women bank with UBA” as i write this am practically singing along with it…LOL
Then there was the Bagco Super Pack Skit:
Workers:We want super sack, bagco super sack.
Worker1:Oga make u dey buy us cement wey dey inside bagco super sack.
Oga: an han, no be that bag una dey use before wey dey leak cement for una body?
Worker 1:Bagco super sack na different bag
Worker 2:E get double layer,na waterproof,Water no fit tosh nothing inside am
Worker1: E come strong kakaraka no dey burst dey leak cement for we head
Worker 2:Bagco super sack also dey reusable.U fit sell am for market women them
Oga:So for big house like this i go fit make plenty thousand Naira.?
Oga: Me sef like better thing.Na bagco super sack i go dey buy from.
Workers: yaay ooooooooooooo we don win oh, we don win, bagco super sack, we don win
(Lol, those where the days…)
Now, those where jingles and skits that stuck to your head for a lifetime, i cant even remember the jingle or soundtrack used for the silly advert i spoke about at the beginning,i could go on and on with different soundtracks and adverts that made sense but then, there is Google now so here is a link to some of them for your viewing and listening pleasure
Its painful to see what applies today as regards advertising and the quest to be too direct as well as in trend, has made these ad agency fellows totally miss the mark in trying to pass the message across. Well, until these guys who make the adverts start to get their acts right, i guess we just have to do with the poor advertising been offered to us.
Well I rest my case and THANK GOD, lunch is here at last. Have a great day and if you where born in the 80s and early 90s then you had a very productive childhood i must say.