Daily Archives: April 10, 2011

Two Thumbs Down, Two Thumbs Up

I don’t consider myself a prude.

When you’ve seen grown men pee in the corrals at the Boston Marathon, all hangups about body parts and bodily functions pretty much disappear.

I received the May issue of Runner’s World this week. (Obviously, they did not process my cancellation request in time to stop the mailing. Great. Now my expected refund of $11.29 will be not so…grand).

So, I’m flipping through this new issue, and two advertisements catch my eye. Let me rephrase: two ads pop my eyeballs open in wide surprise.

The first one:

read the caption up there in the top corner...

And the second one:

yea for vibrams (i have two pairs) but this ad???...

So, in Ad #1, I am genuinely shocked that they’d use the word BOOBS in print!  Attention grabbing – yes. Classy – no. I honestly don’t recollect ever seeing tatas referred to this way before! Am I just behind the times??

Ad #2 – Naked Man + his strategically placed hands…Risqué – yes. Innovative, perhaps. And I can even see how Naked Man relates to the creative slogan, and ties in to the Vibram shoe minimalist mentality. Still, I was surprised to see such a scantily-clad model advertising shoes!

Am I off-base?

In contrast, here are two ads that I do embrace. The first one is from the same RW issue mentioned, above:

read the white print under the "ONWARD" book cover, L hand side...

I love A-Ha quotes about life. This is meaningful stop-and-ponder ad print. Thank you, Starbucks. *Like.*

Secondly, a great ad from Oprah magazine:

this ad would fit nicely in RW, eh!?!

Now that’s smart writing. Way to go, National Peanut Board.

Any ads that have caught your attention lately, positively or negatively?

A few years ago, Pearl Izumi ran a series of ads, differentiating between runners and joggers.

Here’s an example:

At Pearl Izumi, we don’t jog. We run. And we think that matters. The thing is running is endangered. You might find this hard to believe. After all, the number of entrants in your local 10k is surely on the rise, and every Saturday the park is packed with people prancing around in brand new trainers, trying to nurture their chi or look good for their wedding or whatever. Unfortunately, few if any of them are running. They’re jogging, a half-hearted fore-aft movement of the legs that has about as much in common with running as bowling. And with all the jogging going on out there, runners are losing the soul of their sport. A sport that started with our ancestors running wn dinner and remains to this day predatory at its core. Joggers are prey. Runners are hunters. If you belong to the latter group, revel in the fact that you sit firmly atop the bipedal locomotion food chain. And run like an animal.


Considering that I still remember the campaign a couple of years later, the ads obviously did their intended job: they were attention-grabbing, and provoked discussion. (Too bad Pearl Izumi shoes…are…not the *preferred choice* of many athletes!)

Any blasts-from-the-advertising-past that have stuck with you?

Enjoy your Sunday! And if you’re magazine-skimming today, turn the pages with caution – you just never know what you may see!