My old roommate and I used to spend our free time hatching Get Rich Slowly schemes. Used to. Who am I kidding? We just came up with our most recent scheme last weekend. It’s a vacuum-sealed bag system to make pooping while embarked upon an eco-adventure a much less disgusting ordeal than the one Kathleen went through last month while rafting in Utah. We christened the bag-plus-container system the “Siobhan 2000.”
At any rate. One of our more sensible ideas involved farming ourselves out as a mini-focus group for advertisers: Run your marketing campaign past us, and we’ll tell you if it’s any good. This is hardly the stuff of groundbreaking innovation. In fact, it’s really pretty much the bread and butter of marketing companies. But we felt we had good instincts and could perhaps serve as a kind of Siskel and Ebert for advertising ideas. You know, provide a quick thumbs up / thumbs down / “Stoma Man is absolutely terrifying, Smoke-Free New York Program, and not even remotely in the ballpark of what people want to see when they’re just out of bed and mostly focused on determining whether or not they can get away with going to work without showering” type rating system.
So. Had we gotten that off the ground, and had Chilean ad agency DBB contacted us for our thoughts on this stroke of madness, we would have said, “No, no, no! It would be terribly misguided to attempt to sell ADT’s home security services to apartment dwellers by sliding a pop-up box beneath their doors!”
When not held flat, the box pops open to a cube, allowing it to be inserted under a door, where it lies in wait for the returning home owner. The owner sees the terrifying sight of something that has gotten inside his home without his consent. To compound his brief moment of horror, the box bears the slogan “Breaking into your apartment is easier than you think” next to the ADT logo.
There’s a lot wrong with this idea. Part A is simply that it’s perhaps never a good idea to scare the shit out of people. Part B, though, is that unless burglars have developed a way to flatten themselves and pop open at will, the campaign just doesn’t make *sense*: It may be true, as the campaign claims, that breaking into my apartment is easier than I think, but sliding something beneath my door certainly doesn’t do a thing to prove it. It’s just annoying! Two thumbs down!!!