The Advertising Apprentice

March 16, 2010

Do you Practice Safe Breath?

Filed under: Advertising — adamlauzon @ 12:34 PM
Tags: , , ,

Today’s scheduled entry on James P. Othmer’s Adland is going to be delayed by six weeks or so. The reason for the delay? I’ve lined-up an interview with Othmer and I’ll be publishing the entry around the same time as when Adland is published 0n paperback on May 4th. (If you’re a Canadian resident, you can pre-order your copy of Adland by visiting Chapters. While if you live in the US, you can pre-order Adland today through Barnes & Noble.)

So today I wanted to talk about an ad that I saw for the first time late last week. Despite just one exposure to it, it has been so memorable in my mind over the last few days, that this morning when considering topics for this entry, I just had to discuss the following Dentyne Ice commercial:

I absolutely love it! You have a great concept and near-perfect execution of this concept. It’s a fairly simple idea: in scenarios where a guy needs a condom, substitute in a pack of Dentyne Ice. It’s brilliant also because it does such a great job at integrating the product into the story-line and making the gum the focal point of the ad.

You also have to really appreciate the awkwardness and perceived level of uncomfort the man in the second scene feels when buying the pack of gum at the pharmacy. This sense is further heightened by the look he gets from the cashier ringing him through. You can’t help but feel his embarrassment, yet at the same time having no sympathy for him because you know exactly what him buying the gum implies!

Another feature of the ad worth commenting on is the tagline, practice safe breath. It’s original, memorable, and consistent with the theme of the ad. This tagline is so memorable that I used it as the search-term in YouTube to help me find the commercial.

I hope for the creative team that worked on this ad that it translates into some positive results. Despite how much I like the ad, because I am a loyal Excel consumer, the most I’ll be doing as a result of seeing this ad, other than writing this entry, is that I’ll likely tell my friends about “that great Dentyne Ice commercial I saw last week with a really cool concept.” But you never know, maybe that secondary, unpaid word-of-mouth exposure might lead to some positive gains.

The only criticism I have is that with such a solid concept, I think they would’ve been better off splitting this ad into two or three short ten- or fifteen-second spots. That way they can make the most of their well-developed concept and make a campaign out of it. Maybe they have other scenarios already conceived for future ads, who knows! (If they do, I am definitely looking forward to seeing them.)While it would cost more to air two fifteen-second spots or three ten-second spots, they would probably be able to gain more exposures that way.

(Related to this entry, you may want to read the following Adweek article.)

Barring an unforeseen delay in the release date of Mad Men Season 3, my next entry will indeed discuss this television series that with each season gains more and more dedicated viewers.


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