Raise your hand if any of these ring a bell:
Women will leave their men for you!
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I've got to admit, I don't often read my spam, but every once in a while curiosity gets the best of me. Just what exactly is the target audience for all of this?
Just like the hottest "IN DEMAND" male stars in the world of Adult Porn
**YOU TOO WILL BE IN DEMAND**
Increase your testosterone 500%
And get really hairy?
Increase your sex drive
Is that even possible?
Increase your virility
So I can have more kids?
Dramatically increase the amount of semen you ejaculate
Never again experience premature ejaculation
What does this have to do with virility?
She'll never leave you alone when you give her hours of multiple orgasms
Oh, it's a pill for her?
Highly recommended for older men with younger women in their lives!
Yeah, I know. It's obvious. They're preying on male insecurities, we knew that from the beginning. It's no different than any other advertising medium. Every beer commercial that features girls in bikinis and every pickup commercial that has the Man-in-Flannel-and-Boots posing with his truck on the mountaintop -- they all do the same thing; they poke at the weakest points of the fragile male ego: 1) Your penis might not be big enough. 2) Your penis might not be hard enough.
We saw just last week during the Superbowl, the year's first big round of television commercials, that "male enhancement" is an issue, and apparently a big one with the football crowd. Levitra is now an official sponsor of the NFL, Cialis felt they had to verbally warn us to be wary, over the 36-hour period that their drug works, of erections lasting more than 4 hours as if it wasn't a selling point, and Viagra was... well, Viagra. Who ever thought that people who watch football would be ridden with such erectile dysfunction? The spammers did. That's who.
Well, maybe it's about time that brick-and-mortar companies take a page out of the book of their internet compatriots. It would seem that it's the new way to sell. If it didn't work there wouldn't be so much of damn spam, right?
The 2004 Ford F150 all-wheel-drive pickup
will increase your Testosterone 500%!
I'm not saying that companies should resort to sending potential customers thousands of unwarranted e-mails. Most people delete their spam without looking at it, anyway. No, it's the message that's important and the place for this is television -- the commercials are already there, the intention is already there, just step it up to A-Little-More-Obvious and you've broken through to the level that, previously, only the Internet could bring you.
Increase your sex drive. Drink Coke.
[crack] [tssst!] Aaagggghhh!
Yeah, baby. The only thing that might work better would be to alter the products to include a little ... supplement ... if you know what I'm saying. Why should any two-bit spammer get all the glory of selling virility enhancing drugs? Listen, if Blanche Wray (firstname.lastname@example.org) can get her hands on enough Viagra to sell over the internet, any company can. Better yet, rather than including Viagra in the products, R&D could just engineer the existing products to have virility enhancing qualities.
Last longer with the Capri Sun Big Pouch
Whether you're enjoying a mid-day break, a quickie during lunch, or just hanging outside with your friends. The Big Pouch. For when you just want more.
(Please consult your doctor if erections last for 4 hours or longer.)
I don't think I have to tell you that this has endless potential in Marketing Departments around the country.
If anybody should be able to learn something from the Internet, though, it's the drug companies. Does Mike Ditka throwing a football through a tire while being catty about baseball really say, "You will have good erections?" When most people want to get an erection, I'd place bets that Mike Ditka is the last person they're thinking about.
Just like the hottest "IN DEMAND" male stars in the world of Adult Porn...
Yeah.. like Mike Ditka? Not bloody likely. Ditka! The name's been soiled forever. "I'm Mike Ditka, I take pills to get it up, and you can, too."
C'mon Pfizer! C'mon Bayer! C'mon Glaxo Smith Kline! Get a clue! Sell your P-E-N-l-S PlLLZ (WOW!) the right way, with promises of grandeur: Increased virility, increased sex drive, hours of multiple orgasms, a dramatic increase in semen ejaculation!
Okay, maybe that last one is a bit much.
Anyway, showing that our childhood heroes are having problems with their equipment does not make us want to buy the product they're selling. We want to identify with them, but not that much. Pharmaceuticals need to take that extra step beyond, like so many of their sketchy internet-based distributors and really make a statement that people can grab onto. If we wanted soft music and touching moments, we'd rent The Red Shoe Diaries to get it up.
Cialis will make your dick hard for a long frickin' time.
Highly recommended for men who have a hard time getting it up.
There's nothing wrong with truth in advertising. Don't play it up like it's a Massengil commercial, it's not an embarrassing groinal area disorder, it's erectile dysfunction! Go on and whip it out, it's in everybody's e-mail, it may as well be on everybody's television, too.
IF YOU LIKED THIS COLUMN...
2.11.04 @ 12:51a
...a dramatic increase in semen ejaculation!
Ew. Ew. Ew. Ew.
An increase in spoo is not my idea of fun. Go ahead, call me a prude, I don't mind.
If we wanted soft music and touching moments, we'd rent The Red Shoe Diaries to get it up.
DA HA HA!
2.11.04 @ 12:55a
2.11.04 @ 1:46a
I laugh when I hear how people think ad agencies go about creating ads.
I've been an ad writer for 11 years and never once have I thought "I know, I'll pick out a male insecurity and prey on that!"
What you have to remember is, most people believe in their product. They believe it is doing some good. (Although I doubt the middle men spammers do.) But Coke believes their product is a refreshing drink that can quench your thirst. Viagra believes their product can help people who want to get it up but can't.
And that's what their ads are about. They sell the benefit to you. They don't create or prey on insecurities. Insecurities are the responsibility of the consumer, not the producer.
2.11.04 @ 7:34a
Yeah.. see.. I was being satirical.
2.11.04 @ 1:30p
Actually, Matt, when I was in pharmeceutical PR, we really did try to pray on the worries of the public. Tums, for example, would come to us and say "we'd like to sell our product as a calcium supplement," and we'd then go and flood the news, magazines, and web partners with warnings about osteoporosis. We'd hire doctors to go on the Today show and scare women into taking a daily calcium supplement. Not that the product doesn't do what's advertized, but if we just said, "Tums makes a good calcium supplement if you think you need that sort of thing," we wouldn't get the response that "osteoporosis is dangerous! Do something about it NOW!" does.
Anyway, showing that our childhood heroes are having problems with their equipment does not make us want to buy the product they're selling. We want to identify with them, but not that much.
How about an add campaign with, say, Mike Schmidt saying, "Back when I was with the Phillies, I routinely hit them out of the park. But that was 20 years ago. These days, well, these days I still can. But if you're having trouble, unlike me, use Levitra. Mike Ditka does."
2.11.04 @ 6:15p
your doctor Trina Lacefield if erections last 4 hours years or longer.)
Caution: Trina Lacefield may cause dizziness, temporary blindness, uncontrollable whimpering, twitching and slobbering coma, in nine out of ten laboratory mercy-bangs.
(Do not attempt to operate Trina Lacefield, sober)
2.11.04 @ 6:27p
Adam, that would just plain ol' make me smile.
2.11.04 @ 7:05p
...a dramatic increase in semen ejaculation!
This one kills me. Because, really, what a gal truly wants is MORE semen flying around.
2.11.04 @ 10:59p
Yay Erik! Now that I've stopped laughing I have a couple of points to make.
One: Janet Jackson sort of had it whipped out for her during the Super Bowl and the whole country went into a tizzy.
Two: You mean guys need a pill to help them have a 4 hour erection? I just thought that was a natural occurence.
Oh, one more for the road. The Red Shoe Diaries comment is priceless.
2.11.04 @ 11:00p
edit because it double posted. Hey, I guess this column worked like viagra for posts. Twice as many.
2.12.04 @ 9:53a
In one of my "shadow" e-mail accounts this morning, the following subject line: "Give Her Unlimited Orgasms!"
Are you kidding me?! She wouldn't get anything done, my child would go hungry, the house would start to smell funny...!
2.12.04 @ 10:31a
Maybe it should be "Unlimited Orgasms! (Limit 5)."
2.12.04 @ 10:57a
2.12.04 @ 11:51a
What you have to remember is, most people believe in their product. They believe it is doing some good.
Like those cigarette companies, right?
2.12.04 @ 12:32p
Good is a relative term here I think. Even cigarette companies, while knowing the health risks, may believe their smokes have better flavor, and as long as you're going to smoke, you might as well smoke their brand.
Lately, in fact, Phillip Morris has been taking great pride in it's Teen awareness program for avoiding targeting underage folks. Theoretically, by smoking Marlboros's, one is helping combat underage addiction.
2.12.04 @ 12:38p
Ouch. Your swollen, throbbing, embiggened type pains me.
2.12.04 @ 12:40p
Sorry, forgot to close bold. Newbies ::sigh::
2.24.04 @ 4:40p
If there were more pornography aimed at women it would be a better world.
End of rant. Well, okay, end of that sentence.
2.24.04 @ 4:47p
Sandra, I agree with you whole-heartedly.
What the world needs is more women with a taste for pornography.