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10/8/08
Candle Critiques

Has anyone seen the newest series of Glade commercials? Like the one where a woman lights a Glade candle, rips the label off, and tries to convince her newly arrived friends that the candle is a fancy French version while unaware that the label has accidentally affixed itself to her rump? The friends see the label and, being the good friends they are, mock her for being caught in a fib while the woman stands there, mortified. Or how about the similar spot where the woman pops in a Glade plug-in and tells her yoga buddies that the scent is really an expensive one that helps her “plug in”; only to be outed when the pesky Glade is spotted from the downward dog?

There are four or five different commercials in all, and every time I see them, I’m basically left with the same question: Why would a company make commercials depicting people who are embarrassed to use their product? Maybe this is all my marketing classes coming through, but people pretending that they wouldn’t be caught dead with a Glade candle in their homes doesn’t seem like a very good way to sell them. As a matter of fact, the first time I saw the commercials, I turned to Tony and asked him if Glade had become one of those “uncool” brands, like knockoff bags of cereal or fake Rolexes. We have a Glade candle in the bathroom. Should I be hiding it? Is Glade unfashionable now? And why the heck is Glade the one alerting me to this?!?

I tried to figure out what kind of message Glade meant to send…assuming that “you shouldn’t admit to buying Glade” wasn’t it. Maybe the women being mocked for trying to hide their Glade candles were the dorks. Maybe all their friends were supposed to be like, “We love Glade, and we mock you for being so uncool that you deny having one”. Maybe the message is that if you pretend not to like Glade, your friends will expose you for the loser that you are. If so, it might help if the friends actually mentioned liking Glade. Or displaying theirs proudly. Instead, it sounds like they ridicule her for cheaping out with a crappy Glade candle and posing it a good French one. (Speaking of, is there really a candle pecking order? Are French candles supposed to be superior? Am I showing my candle cluelessness by thinking that all candle brands basically smell the same?) Rather than wanting to buy Glade, I’m left wondering if everyone else knows something about my candles that I don’t know.

I’m not sure what the marketing team was going for here, but I’m pretty confident that they missed it. If you ask me, instead of the marketing people pretending that that they’ve never used Glade, Glade should be pretending that they’ve never used those marketing people.

2 comments:

rediscovery said...

I'm so with you on this commercial. I'm driving the family nuts complaining about the exact same things everytime the commercial is on.

cndymkr / jean said...

I'm not sure I have ever bought Glade candles. I'd rather get a Yankee Candle. The containers are prettier and they come in so many great scents.