Tuesday, July 26, 2005

They don't have good hands and they're not good neighbors

Seth Stevenson at Slate calls Geico's "Tiny House" the best ad on TV. I think he might want to tap the brake there just a bit. But Stevenson does make an excellent point about Geico's overall strategy. Instead of trying to appeal to everyone with one bland campaign, Geico scattershoots with wildly different mini-campaigns aimed at different segments. It's a nervy departure from the "trust us" posture of every other auto insurer. And it seems appropriate for a comparatively new company selling direct to consumers. But does it work? "While its competitors are running lots of dour ads that exploit our fear of accidents, Geico stands out from the clutter with its oddball humor and lighthearted tone. The company has managed to inject fun into a product that we resent having to buy." That's the brilliant part.

As for "Tiny House," AdJab is worried: "In this day and age, any ad that manages to fool us is undoubtedly smart. Now we must ask ourselves what the world has come to when such a premise seems completely believable."


SuzanH said...

I'm ashamed to say I like the Tiny House commercial. And it does seem completely plausible that it's a real show. I'm surprised it's not. And scared it will be.

Irene Done said...

I should have been clearer, because I like the commercial too. In fact, it's so good that when I watch it again and again -- even after knowing it's a fake show promo -- I still find it funny. And I should admit in complete fairness to Stephenson that only the headline (which he probably did not write) calls Tiny House the best ad on TV; Stephenson himself calls it "brilliant." So "brilliant" I agree with. "Best ad?" Maybe not. But it's up there.