Five up and Seven along

This blog is very much attuned to the adverts that appeal to me, and therefore unsurprisingly social media, mobile, gamification and such like take up my typing. I subjectively make decisions on a subject’s ‘blogability’ (that elusive quality) based on my reactions as part of the target audience. As such, advertising aimed at the ‘grey pound’ segment often goes amiss – a demographic oversight on my part as 13 million of the British population is expected to be over 65 years old by 2030. Thus, in an attempt to address this, I give you the ultimate marketing ploy to capture this group’s attention – start with a stereotype and then surprise.

In Brazil, Ogilvy started with recognition that older people enjoy crosswords, or rather have the patience, intelligence and perseverance to bother completing the checkerboard grids and alarming eleven lettered words. Thus, with this in mind and the knowledge that crosswords retain a more senior audience’s attention, Ogilvy bought ad space inside a crossword puzzle for department store Magazine Luiza to highlight its benefits to retirees. The idea being that readers would solve the ‘ads’ to complete the puzzle and in the process reveal the name of the retailer. I like this because it ultimately distorts the conception of advertising as a form of traditional media, while winning on the sneaky-scalometer. Yes, there is something slightly deceptive about subtly rolling out your marketing message on the back of some cryptic clues and “8 ups” and “5 alongs”, but I get the impression that the “grey matter” will appreciate the wit. Coupons for unflattering fleeces or patronising mailers for stair lifts this is thankfully not… although the cheesy marketing video below whiffs of a similar unfortunate attitude.


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