Tuesday, July 12, 2011

AdMissions Review: WTF! That’s all very well, but what’s the message?

This ad created by Rain43 for Ontario Power Generation and the Ontario Provincial Police aims to remind people about water safety and the importance of staying away from dams and hydro stations.
This television spot has me still scratching my head.

Here are my thoughts from National Post AdMissions. All summer I will be lending my opinions and POV on ads.

Peaceful waters. Grumpy old man. Man's best friend alongside. Ominous music. Ghostly message. What's the point?

Things I learned from this are that cucumbers can be "tranquilized" and "there is no fury like that of second ex-wife." What I did not learn was the point of this ad.

Public-awareness ads have to deliver a clear message. Preaching your message or being too subtle will have the same effect on the audience -it will be ignored.

Knowing the "headponds" above and below dams and hydro-stations are particularly dangerous, the setting here is your basic tranquil Muskoka waterway. These calm waters could change quickly, and become rapidly moving and dangerous. This point is not clear in the ad.

I can't help but put this up against the clarity of the WSIB "Prevent-it.ca" campaign, but here the message is lost.

I am unapologetic that it took me a few too many viewings to figure out or even get the basic message.

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