David Harbour in It's a Tide Ad
The trending Tide Ad has already been viewed 1.9 million times on Youtube. So, what's making this ad work? For starters, there is a celebrity endorsement featuring David Harbour, who plays American Chief Officer Jim Hopper in a Netflix Original series, Stranger Things. Why did P&G choose Harbour for the Tide ad? According to Statista 31% of people ages, 18-29 have viewed every episode of Stranger Things and 23% of people, ages 30-44. These age groups mark the largest groups of people who have watched Stranger Things. Therefore, a large number of people are familiar with one of the Heroes of Stranger Things.
Tides Target Demographics
Now, we'll take a look at Tides' target demographics by infoscout. You will quickly find that, although slightly in the sample size, that people aged 24-34 are more likely to purchase tide. With this information, we can see why David Harbour was chosen for the ad. It seems that the same people who purchase tide have something in common with those who love Stranger Things.
Tide Ads Approach
According to Statista, Tide is the leading laundry detergent brand. This explains why the ad wasn't necessarily informative or hard selling. Instead, this ad was crafted to boost brand likability and maintain market share. In addition to the comical take, the ad also hosted a hashtag for social media. The hashtag is #TideAd, shown at the end of the spot. This is powerful, considering that most people within the target age demographics are on social media.
How Did Tide Tie it All Together
Finally, we get to see how Tide tied it together. By mentioning it's a tide ad throughout the entirety of the ad it enabled people to remember the ad even if they were viewing the ad with low involvement. However, the Super Bowl is known for its commercials. This tells us that people were likely viewing the ads with high involvement. Not only did Tide make use of David Harbour, and make fun of other ads, but they successfully showcased the purpose of their product.
If you didn't notice it before, watch the ad again! The shirts on the actors are amazingly clean and bright. The idea here seems that it's better to show the benefits of the product rather than tell prospects it works!
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Father’s Day is coming up this month and a classic ad from Tide uses the perfect image of fatherhood to get you to buy their product.
This ad from Tide seems innocent enough and, in some ways, not the kind of models we usually see in ads like this one. Typically, we’d expect to see a young blonde white father and blonde white son dressed in matching white t-shirts and cuddled up asleep on white sheets. Yet in this ad, we see a Black father with his Black son dressed in matching white t-shirts and cuddled up on white sheets. Nonetheless the ad is still a shining picture of middle-class comfort and stability.
Although this ad pictures an adult Black man, the target audience seems to be women who love sensitive and loving Black men. We can also gather that this target audience is either middle-class or has aspirations for middle-class living. However, another reading of this ad is that it might be targeting gay men. The ad doesn’t clearly suggest that the voyeur in this ad is a woman and might also be a gay man whose knees would similarly buckle at seeing such a tender moment.
And how exactly does Tide target this audience? By getting women to sigh at this warm and fuzzy picture of a sleeping father and his son. It’s a tried and true technique and we guarantee that very few people will argue against this heartwarming picture. Tide also uses plain folks to get consumers to identify with this image of an average father and his son. Also, in this ad Tide associates itself with general values of caring fatherhood, Black men as supportive fathers and a commitment to loving Black families. This peaceful moment then symbolizes middle-class stability especially through the immaculate white window frame and curtains.
Despite this convincing ad featuring a Black family, it would be hard to argue that Tide is supportive of true racial equality. Tide is a product of Procter & Gamble, a multi-billion dollar company that produces other items like Crest toothpaste, Gillette shavers and Pampers diapers. Procter & Gamble’s headquarters are located in Cincinnati, Ohio – a city that is infamous for its 2001 riots in response to the fatal shooting of a 19-year old Black man by a white cop. The city is about 42 percent Black with 21 percent of the city living in poverty.
However, like many other companies based in a town like Cincinatti, P&G has CEOs on business boards and redevelopment teams that will impact the racial and economic demographics of the city. In the last years, P&G has also led multiple efforts to “diversify” its work force. In 2009, the company reported their work force was only 21 percent people of color.
That is a noble effort, but as the company was leading these campaigns they were also gutting their workforce and their US workers took the brunt of it. Between 1999 and 2001, the company cut a total of 17,400 jobs to decrease overhead expenses and increase profits.
When we put this ad in context of P&G’s priorities of profits and their bottomline, we see that Black families are important to the company as long as they become a life-long consumer base. It’s business. And in business, profits are the real priority.
Leticia Miranda is the Media Research Associate at Media Literacy Project.