So, I’m in the kitchen (bothering my wife as she cooks), and the TV is on in the background.  I hear the words “Door Buster”.  I was thinking that it was a Target ad – nope Gordman’s.  I think to myself, what the heck is a door buster?  Then, another ad comes 0n (same commercial break).  I hear the same words again… “Door Buster”.  Younkers.  What the…?  Back-to-back retail store ads that both use the words “Door Buster” in their Black Friday ads?  Kooky.

But GUESS WHAT?  The next ad?  “Door Buster”.  It’s a Macy’s ad I think.  Are you counting?  That’s 3.  What’s the next ad mention that immediately follows?  … “Blah blah blah, Door Buster!”  Target.  Now, I’m thinking, NO WAY there’s going to be FIVE of them.  I was giddy when I heard it.  “Door Buster”.  By who?  Pretty sure it was Best Buy.

FIVE!!! Five national companies (that are supposed to have really good advertising agencies) all using the same two words in 5 ads in a row in one TV commercial break!  You have to be kidding me.  Of course, I’m an ad geek, and I notice crap like that.  But what does the average consumer do?  She starts to ignore those words.  All those companies just made the words “Door Buster” completely non-unique and CLICHÉ!

I should also mention that every ad was almost exactly the same except for Target’s.  It was creative and semi-different.  But it still didn’t make me want to go THERE instead of one of the other 4 stores in which their advertising had so recently seduced me.  There’s still probably a place in heaven for ad agency people who take millions and millions from companies by giving absolutely zero value…but I’ll be shocked if their section of heaven is not at least a little dingier than the rest of the place.

An ocean of sameness is what I see out there.  If you like a word or phrase that a competitor uses in their marketing…at least take an hour and try to come up with your own.  In advertising, treading water in the “ocean of sameness” is damaging.  It’s pretty much the opposite of innovative.

Whatever you are advertising…or however you are advertising… stay away from the ocean of sameness.  It’s lame, shark-infested, toxic, and stinky.  If YOU can’t create persuasive and partially-original ad strategies and ad copy, make sure you hire someone who CAN.  But YOU need to be educated enough about advertising so YOU know if the person you hire has a clue.

Duane Christensen

Non-Fat Advertising

About these ads

3 responses »

  1. Lisa Brouwer says:

    Black Friday ads are beginning to get to me like political ads do at the end of October… blah blah blah… they all look the same! However… I do LOVE the new Target ads with blondie getting ready to kick some a$$ at 4am! That’s like holding a mirror up to all those hard core shoppers – need to be strong to fight for the $27 6 gallon shop vac at Wal-Mart!

    You’re the ad guy… what words would you have used??

  2. andre fields says:

    You must have been reading my mind. I heard a local TV ad today that made say ‘you’ve got to be kidding me’. ….”if your tired of all the gimmicks, come to us we’re honest and have been in business for 70 yrs….blah blah….biggest selection, and best prices.” Havent we heard that before. Im watching now to see what company offers the least selection at the highest prices so i can go there for the UNIQUENESS.
    Being in advertising now I feel you. Alot of the ads same the same thing in the same way. I just wish business owners knew this and recognized this because most only approve ads that sound like “ads” and then wonder why they dont work.

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