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mY Ad Report Card: Carl’s Junior, Audrina Patridge (her bikini) and The Teriyaki Burger

July 7, 2009

If you didn’t read my first edition of mY Ad Report Card, check my review of Minute Maid’s latest spot

On to Round 2!

Who: Carl’s Junior & Audrina Patridge

What: Easting a Teriyaki Burger in a bikini

Where: On the beach

When: Present time period

Y: So on this blog we have had numerous posts regarding sex and advertising, so I decided why not review an ad that just oozes sex appeal.  There is no better place to start than Carl’s Junior’s new spot starring Audrina Patridge.

To understand the point of this commercial, it is important that we remember in whose footsteps she is following in.  Years ago Paris Hilton made the first sexy Carl’s Junior commercial – eating a burger while washing a car, or herself, or both.  Basically the only time Paris Hilton has looked attractive – or maybe it was just the burger.

The spot is basically a bikini clad Audrina eating a Teriyaki burger on the beach.  Her voice over says that she gives up a lot for her bikini body, but the burger is the one thing she won’t.  A very simple concept, she looks great and it will keep attention for the full 30 seconds.

Well here’s the major downside to the commercial.  The voiceover is just awful.  Not only does it sound like she’s just going through the motions, but any commercial that starts out with, “To look this hot in a bikini” (talking about herself) with the words “Top-Rated Bikini Body” on screen is going to be talked about for a long time (whether good or bad).

That’s how simple the spot is, hot girl in a bikini eating a burger.  But how effective is it, especially to Gen Y?

Well first, even though Audrina (from the Hills) is giving her “nutritional tips” to the masses, shockingly this commercial isn’t directed to females out there.  No, the target market for this spot is giggly teenage boys, old men, and every male demographic in-between.

This spot especially focuses on Gen Y, as Audrina is a “Gen Y Star” (if you have watched The Hills or this spot, it’s quite obvious she’s not a star for her acting skills).  But because Gen Yers are internet and pop culture masters, whether the have watched the Hills or not, most Gen Yers will know who she is.

If they didn’t before, they do now.

Gen Y could be the most sexual generation yet.  We were the first to grow up with the internet, and pornography not being taboo.   We grew up with a higher tolerance for sex because of our: technological advances (instant availability of media), higher education about different cultures and lifestyles (diversity), and our parents coming of age during the sexual revolution (upbringing).  We also have a much higher tolerance for better looking individuals with less talent (which will lead to the downfall of our generation).  This commercial will not shock Gen Y, but they will pay attention to it.

This spot is simple, it doesn’t need much breakdown – sex sells.  I think if the voiceover had been more powerful, and more memorable this could have been a really effective and talked about commercial.  But, because it’s basically just her with no real spokesperson skills, the spot won’t be as effective as it could have been.

Carl’s Junior did do a good job in how they produced the spot.  Unlike other companies, they didn’t lose focus their on the product by using too much sex.  The burger was in the whole spot, and there was a good Carl’s Junior logo at the end.  They tip toed the line of “too much sex” but never crossed it; we still know what product this commercial is about.

This commercial was decently effective, although the messaging wasn’t the greatest it was very memorable and the burger did look damn good.

Now excuse me when I go get lunch…

Gen Y Grade (Value to Gen Y)

Product: 7.0

Messaging: 5.5

Entertainment: 8.5

Persuasiveness: 7.0

Recognition of Product: 8.5

Total Score: 7.3 – Sex sells Carl’s Junior, if only your messaging was a little better

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