George Duncan

Marketing copywriter/consultant, author

Me, Me, Me!

From Watch Your Ads — A media memo by George Duncan

The XFINITY ad for X1, a voice-controlled video platform accurately reflects today’s web culture perhaps more than the writers intended. It features the pop TV celeb Mindy Kaling. The guy demonstrating the app asks her to suggest a search term, so naturally she names herself, “Mindy Kaling.” She looks up and says, approximately, “It’s everything me in one place.”  He suggests another term but she says, “The Mindy Project.” Oh, ok, the guy says, a bit annoyed, you can also search by genre, so she says “Mindy cute.” Then she grabs the remote from his hand and continues with “Mindy looking sexy” as with a shrug the guy shuffles off into the background. I think XFINITY got more Mindy for their money than they got for the app, whatever it is, I forget.

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Add the mountains of narcissistic Facebook and Twitter look-at-me stuff, including the tweets by the King of Me in NY’s mayoral race – plus a scary story in the 7/28/13 NY Times Magazine about the tragic role millions of Redditors and tweeters played in misidentifying a suspect in the Boston bombing – and the Internet begins to feel like one of those runaway cars careening down a crowded sidewalk.

Even the tech is turning inward. We started with cell phones. Then cell phones that were also cameras (“more pix than with any other camera” – iPhone). Pix. BTW, that includes millions of the ultimate web metaphor, “selfies.”). Now comes, predictably, the Nokia Lumia, a camera that – yup, makes phone calls.

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I invest like me

Then along comes Scottrade with a customer who proudly proclaims, “I don’t trade like everyone. I trade like me.”  A clear appeal to the hot shot who thinks he or she will outsmart the market on the day trader roulette wheel. Never mind that the next Scottrader says the same thing, and the next and the next and if you add them all up you get the millions of traders and billions of trades that make up each day’s market that is, of course, everyone. They do have all those wonderful charts that slice and dice the data so they can perform the latest double default swap straddle (the famed DDSS strategy).

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Donuts in the conference room

I love Progressive’s latest ad that has the delightfully ditzy spokesperson, Flo, coming down a chimney, emerging from the sand on a beach and being lowered from the ceiling to hand prospects their Discount boxes. She mutters to the exec in the last instance, “There are donuts in the conference room” and ascends, presumably into insurance heaven. Moments later another guy comes to the door and advises, “There are donuts in the conference room.” Sorry, but it breaks me up. Almost could forgive Progressive for the “savings suckers” who land on a moving car with their ugly faces pressed against the windshield, wet lips stuck to the glass and all.

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Absolvo te peccatorum!

Does the Discover credit card ad bother anyone else? Somehow, hearing the poor schlub be “forgiven” for having committed the mortal sin of a Late Payment annoys me. Why should  anyone be “forgiven” for being a damn customer of Discover and paying his bill.  Like they’re doing us a favor. At least he didn’t have to say any Hail Marys.

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Take two aspirin for heart attack

It’s amazing. Wish I knew when I had my two heart attacks. Stupid me underwent open heart surgery. Twice. Had I known, I could have just taken two aspirin and moved on. Next thing you know, they’ll come up with a pill for headaches.

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I think I know Victoria’s secret:

“You’ve never seen body’s like this.” (sic)

She can’t spel.

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Quote of the Week:

When people talk, great things happen.

                                   Wells Fargo

Keep clickin’

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