The article I posted yesterday on a Saab ad published in TIME Magazine certainly seems to have generated some good discussion. Most commenters seem to agree with my sentiments but there were a few who defended the ad and were willing to offer up theories as to why it might have been run.
I don’t want to start a whole new discussion on the same topic, but there was another ad that was similar in that it just made me (and others) scratch their heads. It appeared in Autoweek and was entitled “She is not for you”.
You can see that ad here.
To the defenders of the ad: I can see the position that many of you are offering here and I respect the professional credentials that some of you hold. I understand that any ad will reach some readers. This ad will make some people think, and then read it again, even if only to make sense of it.
But the way I see it, that’s the problem.
If you read it a few times and your main thought is WTF? then one has to ask whether or not it’s doing a job effectively. Remember, this is a print ad, so people can’t click on a link to get more information, they need to get their information from the ad itself or have their curiosity piqued to such a degree that they feel compelled to look for more.
Personally, I didn’t find the ad compelling (not in a positive way, at least).
I’m not completely sure of the backstory to these ads, but there are theories around that at least one of them was placed early and attempts to axe it were too late.
This is quite possibly my own personal hobby horse coming into play here, but I think Saab could have used the story of their survival and sale to much greater effect. The convoys, the way people all around the world fought for this company – it’s all there and ready to be told and it does make for a great underdog story.
More than that, it’s a direct answer to a question that a LOT of dealers still get asked: Saab are still alive? What happened?
Fold that story into the fantastic story of a brand new Saab 9-5 and I think there’s plenty of ground to be made.