The People’s Jury: Viewers thirst for polar bears - Coca-Cola’s cute animals proved appealing to, well, everybody

By JOHN OWEN, campaignlive.co.uk, Friday, 19 December 1997 12:00AM

The difference between the industry’s and the public’s view of advertising is exposed yet again by this month’s People’s Jury. While those in the know wax lyrical about Wieden & Kennedy’s marvellously observed ’eagle’ and ’blind man’ films for Coca-Cola, the average man and woman in the street - or, in this case, on the phone - love the polar bears that have resurfaced in the soft-drinks giant’s pre-Christmas TV campaign. Cuddly animals? You just can’t go wrong with ’em.

The difference between the industry’s and the public’s view of

advertising is exposed yet again by this month’s People’s Jury. While

those in the know wax lyrical about Wieden & Kennedy’s marvellously

observed ’eagle’ and ’blind man’ films for Coca-Cola, the average man

and woman in the street - or, in this case, on the phone - love the

polar bears that have resurfaced in the soft-drinks giant’s

pre-Christmas TV campaign. Cuddly animals? You just can’t go wrong with

’em.



The bears just pip the popular Barclaycard campaign, starring Rowan

Atkinson, to the accolade of most likeable ad of the month. It’s a brave

client that ditches such a popular series but, no sooner had the final

instalment been released, than a new pair of Barclaycard films were on

air. The most memorable one features a man getting ready for work in the

morning as his house systematically falls down around him. It’ll take a

while before the new approach wins the plaudits awarded to Latham, but

BMP DDB will be more than happy with the round 6.0 score the fresh work

has achieved.



Each month, Campaign selects 20 brands that have new TV ads, or old

executions back on air, and asks two groups of 500 viewers what they

think of the advertising (ten brands per group). Those jurors who can

remember each ad give it a mark out of ten and we then rank the

commercials by their mean score (see table above). The panel (right)

indicates the five brands the jurors would be most likely to buy or

use.



Both Coke and Woolworths have made the top five in both, Bates Dorland’s

Woolies Wonderland ads coming a respectable third in the likeability

stakes as well as second only to the Royal Mail - also a Dorlands

client - in the propensity to buy category.



The fourth most popular ads this month were Mother’s delightful

Batchelors Supernoodles films. Oddly, given their male target audience

and Men Behaving Badly humour, they proved more popular with women

jurors than men. The lasses gave the ads an average 6.2, compared with

5.9 from the lads. But where the ads really hit home were with 15- to

34-year-olds of both sexes, who gave them 6.6 - as opposed to a frankly

unamused 5.0 from the over 55s.



As you’d expect in the run-up to Christmas, this month’s batch includes

a fair proportion of seasonal product sells, including McCann-Erickson’s

Black & Decker and Willox Holmes & Law’s creative masterpiece for Tryton

Yorkshire Puddings. In another ya-boo-sucks-to-you from the public to

adland, both were considered preferable to BMP DDB’s sumptuous work for

Vodafone.



One of that agency’s finest gems, the beef ad for the Meat & Livestock

Commission, performed averagely in the likeability poll, but - prior to

the latest meat scandal - the public’s appetite for beef was

considerable, making it fourth in our propensity-to-buy table.



Will the revered planners at BMP be surprised, delighted, or both to

learn that the old people featured in the ad are actually the ones that

gave it the lowest mark? By far the highest mark (6.2) came from the

middle group of 35- to 54-year-olds. Do they just recognise their

parents or is this how they would like to turn out?



Audience Selection carried out all the telephone interviews between 5

and 7 December, selecting 1,000 adults who represent a cross-section of

the population by age, class, sex and geography.



SELECTED ADS: DECEMBER 1997

1     Coca-Cola                      Creative Artists Agency         7.6

2     Barclaycard (Latham)           BMP DDB                         7.4

3     Woolworths                     Bates Dorland                   6.4

4     Batchelors Supernoodles        Mother                          6.1

5     Barclaycard (new)              BMP DDB                         6.0

6     Royal Mail                     Bates Dorland                   5.9

7     Felix Catfood                  BMP DDB                         5.8

8=    Dry Blackthorn Cider           Grey                            5.7

8=    Honda CRV                      CDP                             5.7

8=    Meat & Livestock Commission    BMP DDB                         5.7

8=    Somerfield                     Butler Lutos Sutton Wilkinson   5.7

12=   Sure anti-perspirant           Ammirati Puris Lintas           5.6

12=   Surf                           Ammirati Puris Lintas           5.6

14    Tryton Yorkshire Puddings      Willox Holmes & Law             5.3

15=   Black & Decker Jigsaw

      Multisander                    McCann-Erickson                 5.2

15=   Citroen Xsara                  Euro RSCG Wnek Gosper           5.2

15=   Kodak Advantix                 Ogilvy & Mather                 5.2

18    Anchor Cream Swirls            Saatchi & Saatchi               5.1

19    Vodafone                       BMP DDB                         4.9

20    L’Oreal Elvive

      Multivitamins                  McCann-Erickson                 4.5

Source: Audience Selection. Further information and copies of the full

results are available. Tel 0171-608 3618



This article was first published on campaignlive.co.uk

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