Don’t we all know that, cometh Mother’s Day, comes the barrage of new ads (and the new age Digital Films) that we see on TV and YouTube, the campaigns that every brand wants to do to show how they understand their audience’s sentiments better than everyone and once every year we try to sell things by devaluing a sweet spot from one’s life. Yeah! I called Mothers a sweet spot, in a world full of emotions and yet one day we so ceremoniously celebrate that special feeling that makes them insignificant to our lives
No, this is not a rant on how Mother’s Day is a marketing gimmick created by advertisers to exploit one more human emotion to increase their sales. On the hindsight, maybe YES! But this is about how advertising has created deep fractures on how emotions and relationships can easily be molded to a brand’s benefit. It is similar to how we use kids to sell products for adult usage, where they are being used as tools just to get that great ad-value recall. It is like Cause advertising where we use scripted narratives to establish how great the CSR of the company is, those disabled and needy faces that can be used to sell more of the brand’s products. Brands today will use any and every emotion to get their audience’s attention (and that to badly!) and that is my major concern and cause of this piece.
It’s not that the present generation has bought this unto themselves, it was there way before, when people were realizing the power of advertising. If we are doing it wrong, it doesn’t mean that we can’t correct it. We have to bring that calculated logical objectives to our thinking where we need to differentiate the good from the bad. Distinguish between misleading and motivating, try to clearly see the correlation between the brand’s intentions and its ad impact and act towards it.
This week, there would be a barrage of brands telling us how important a Mother’s role is in our lives, predictably there would be campaigns like #DearMom #MothersLove , an open letter to Mom or from Mom. Some movie industry people try to promote their movies, some brands try hard to humanize themselves on social media. Few emotional films on things mom do like #KhanaKhaya, to quirky things mom say, all are used to generate buzz around brands. Shopping apps have told you all about what all your mom deserves, food apps would tell you to do something special like using a 20% discount and order food for mom through their app. The underlying fact being that we need to understand the amount of content creation that is taking place just around an emotion, some of this stuff would be ground-breaking while some would be utter garbage.
I ask for your help to filter out the bad things from this clutter and use hashtag #NotSoGood wherever you find stuff which is shallow, a bad ploy to play those human emotions for their own benefits. I am doing this because: Advertising is the Mother who feeds my passion and I don’t want it to be exploited.