Monday, 12 April 2010

Nescafe is aggressively (I think) promoting its white coffee perhaps in a bid to coincide with the opening of a few more Old Towns in Singapore. So I excitedly gave it a try recently but it turned out quite disappointing. It wasn't even that it was a poorer version of what I think white coffee should taste like (granted, my idea is conceived from Old Town's version), but it barely even tasted like coffee at all; the only way I can think of describing it is a creamy beverage of sorts undergoing an identity crisis. Bleah. Super's white coffee is a much better alternative if one desires a quick fix of white coffee at home.

I think this Carl's Junior advertisement should be applauded.

I first spotted it as an Adshel outdoor advertisement at the bus stop just outside Dhoby Ghaut MRT where I await buses that bring me to school. What really hit it for me was the pair of 'real' red boots sticking out from under the giant burger (alright they were probably plastic, but they were really sticking out). It instantly came full circle - it was a very cheeky attack on immediate rival McDonald's - and it was brilliant. When it comes to size and taste, we don't clown around. NICE.

But, disappointingly, a few days later when I returned, the boots were actually removed. While I am not entirely sure why they were removed, an immediate thought came to my mind that there might have been a suit filed against the advertisement, perhaps on some lame grounds of copyright. But I think more possibly what underlies the complaint might have either been insensitivity (from a third party's point of view) or McDonald's own retaliation against what can be very obviously perceived as a personal attack. Definitely not good for business - especially since the Ronald McDonald clown might be an obsolete icon that McDonald's is trying as subtly as possible to phase out from its marketing altogether.

The chicken essence battle not too long ago comes to mind, as I recall that Brands launched a corporate complaint against (was it) New Moon when New Moon's advertisement said it doesn't rely on caramel (or was it caffeine?), a (not so) subtle hint at Brands' underhand methods in the preparation process.

I love watching these advertising jibes as, once in a while, the competition spills out into the open and companies find themselves directly engaged. It segments and targets the more aware consumer who will get where the joke is directed at while at the same time testing the nerve of competitors, and I think that's cool.

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