Monday, May 19, 2014

2229 Brand Nameless

I was watching a commercial online the other day. It occurred to me that online commercial watching has hidden benefits. Like you can pause and rewind them if you want to see something again.

Not all online commercials play that way but quite a few do. So now I have the chance to examine them closer. Maybe closer than the makers intended.

One I saw recently showed me how much money they really dump into those things. The commercial was about a guy visiting a gas station convenience store and not spending any money other than to buy a bottle of water. The message being that the subject of the commercial, his new car, doesn't really need to stop for gas, so no gas station knows his name.

What was interesting about the commercial was that the interior of the convenience store looked perfect. Except there were no recognizable brand names anywhere. All the products --- the cartons, the bottles, the cans --- had the right colors and shapes, but none of them had any names. 

What an enormous amount of time and expense must have gone into recreating this detail. Doing so without giving any competitor an iota of product placement. Or the chance to sue for copyright infringement. Sure there was a red can, but it wasn't Coke. Sure there was a green fluid-filled bottle. But it wasn't Gatorade. 

I wonder. That's a lot of product genericizing for one little commercial. Is there a business that caters to the industry and supplies these brand-scrubbed stand-ins? If so, props to them.

They blew it though. They should have put the car's brand name in miniature on each and every item. Because I only saw and heard it once. And I don't remember which car it was...

America, ya gotta love it. 

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