Tag Archives: print ads

In English, “Dasani” Means “Filtered Tap Water.”


The Dasani brand of bottled water is sold by The Coca-Cola Company. Here’s what Wikipedia says about Dasani water:

Coca-Cola uses tap water from local municipal water supplies, filters it using the process of reverse osmosis and adds trace amounts of minerals, including magnesium sulfate (Epsom salt), potassium chloride and table salt (sodium chloride).

If your product is filtered tap water, there’s not a whole lot you can say about it in your ad. So, instead, Coca-Cola has jumped onto the green bandwagon.

Up to 30% made from plants, reads the headline. I guess that means we can all feel good about ourselves when we spend our hard-earned money on filtered tap water. I mean, it’s green, right? And look, the bottle even grows on a corn stalk.

But look closer. It says up to 30% made from plants. That means not more than 30%. It could be 10%. Or 5%. Or 1%. We don’t really know.

I don’t know how much of the bottle is made from a plant, but I do know that all of the bottle is made in a plant.

Coca-Cola plant

By Marc Librescu

Tampax is Just Plain Crazy. Period.

Tampax Pearl

This ad for Tampax Pearl leaves me utterly speechless (which is why it’s probably a good thing I’m typing this).

The ad features tennis star Serena Williams, wearing a white tennis dress that’s so short we can practically see her hoo-haw. She’s hit a tennis ball. In the foreground, an ethnic-looking woman dressed like it’s 1947 holds her monthly gift, which is represented by a red box with a smoking hole in it. We’re led to believe the hole is the result of the tennis ball having been slammed through the box.

If you look at the box, you’ll notice that it forms a little face. The two parts of the bow coming off the top form the eyes; the pink rectangle over the hole is the nose; and the hole is the mouth. Once you see the face, you’ll notice it has the same expression as the woman holding the box.

Monthly gift? Box? Hole? A period with an angry face that has smoke coming out of it’s mouth? I ask you: What kind of insane minds dreamed this stuff up?

By Marc Librescu

Jell-O: Treat Yourself to Collagen!

Jell-o Ad

The headline in this ad for Jell-O, Treat Yourself to Nothing, is written in a childlike scrawl, inside a big red blobby thing. I can’t tell if the red blobby thing is meant to look like Jell-O or a pool of blood. Together, the type and the red blobby thing are supposed to suggest fun. The problem is that it doesn’t say fun to me. It says blah.

Treat Yourself to Nothing refers to the fact that the dessert has 0 Weight Watcher’s points. But it looks to me that they’re unintentionally implying that their product is nothing. Who wants to spend money on nothing? If I really wanted to treat myself to nothing, I’d stay home, save my money, and not buy Jell-O.

Besides, everyone knows Jell-O isn’t nothing. It’s something. Specifically, it’s gelatin, water, sugar, flavoring, and food coloring. Gelatin is made from collagen—you know, the same stuff* that rich celebrities inject into their lips to give them that beautiful trout-pout.

Lips Like Jell-O, sugar kisses.

Marc, you ask, where does collagen come from? The answer comes from our friends at TLC:

“The gelatin you eat in Jell-O comes from the collagen in cow or pig bones, hooves, and connective tissues. To make gelatin, manufacturers grind up these various parts and pre-treat them with either a strong acid or a strong base to break down cellular structures and release proteins like collagen. After pre-treatment, the resulting mixture is boiled.”

So Fun says the ad copy. And nothing says fun like eating ground-up cow and pig bones, hooves, and tissue!

* The collagen used in cosmetic surgery isn’t exactly the same as the collagen used to make gelatin. According to Wikipedia: “Most medical collagen is derived from young beef cattle…Recently an alternative to animal-derived collagen has become available. Although expensive, this human collagen, derived from donor cadavers, placentas and aborted fetuses, may minimize the possibility of immune reactions.”

By Marc Librescu

Coming Soon: The Return of AdMonkey!

The Return of AdMonkey - www.admonkey.org

They said it would never happen, but they were wrong. AdMonkey is coming back.*


* Results not typical. Your actual mileage may vary. May cause slight discoloration of the skin, drowsiness, insomnia, or oily discharge. All monkeys appearing in this blog are fictitious. Any resemblance to real monkeys, living or dead, is purely coincidental. Reading AdMonkey may lead to skepticism and occasional bouts of sarcasm. Don’t take on an empty stomach.

Gillette Fusion Power: Up Close And Personal


In this ad, Gillette takes a mundane object—a razor—and transforms it into something amazing by playing with the perspective. Add the orange background and you have a winner.

My only complaint with this ad is that the copy is difficult to read against the yellow glow in the background.

By Marc Librescu

LG Rumor²: Lose The Butterflies

LG Rumor2 ad

This ad for LG Rumor² asks:

Is it a fashion statement?
Or something better?

My answer:

It’s not a fashion statement.
Or something better.
You’ve taken Heidi Klum,
a beautiful woman,
made her look like a man,
and covered her with insects.

The effect is not so nice.

By Marc Librescu

Always Mind Your Language

Always ad

I’m thinking that an ad for a product of this type should probably avoid using the words going down in the headline (for readers who may be non-native English speakers, it’s a slang term for a certain sexual act).

File this under what where they thinking?

By Marc Librescu