As we have said before, we have the opportunity to pepper nearly 200 young men and women between the ages of 15–18 with questions regarding marketing and advertising, their lifestyle choices, and the trends they are seeing within their social environments.
We love it.
So recently we had the chance to show them the extended version of the Toyota Camry #OneBoldChoice variation of the "To Be a Dad" commercial, which featured professional football players, retired players, firefighters, store owners, and others talking about what it is like to look up to a Dad and how it feels to be a dad. Honestly, the extended version was pretty darn touching.
But, as we asked our pupils, was it effective?
We asked them first what was being advertised. The majority correctly replied the Toyota Camry. We asked them when they first saw the car in the six-minute short film, and they all correctly answered "at the end of the film."
When we asked them why that was the case, the answer varied. Varied by a great deal.
We saw several ads that day that focused on Dads and it got us thinking: Is this year focused not on the single or hyper-masculine guy but on the Dad? This is a very interesting strategy. If a brand caters to the Dad, the brand can foster goodwill with the children who look up to the Dad, and if the ad and brand create nostalgic memories, it could create a unique bond between it and the family.
We wonder if the research the brands gathered yielded the same conclusions.
Or, since this is yet another huge spectacle in the sports arena and the Winter Olympics advertisers did a lot with focusing on Mom, perhaps the Super Bowl advertisers decided to focus attention on Dad.
That seems like the easier and more plausible scenario.
It's certainly not a bad thing. We just wish brands would come around to these kind of ads earlier. It's good stuff.
Dwayne W. Waite Jr. is partner and principal at JDW: The Charlotte Agency, a marketing and advertising shop in Charlotte, NC. He enjoys consumer behavior, economics, and football.