You know, I had such high hopes for SodaStream’s Super Bowl ad. And why shouldn’t I? Here’s a list of ingredients SodaStream had at its disposal:
- Cool/fun/interesting product? Check.
- Willingness to create an ad that’s a little edgy and confront competitors (Coke and Pepsi) head on? Check.
- A-list celebrity willing to shill the product? Check.
- One of the advertising industry’s biggest rock stars and creative minds (Alex Bogusky) at the helm of your ad? Check, check and CHECK.
SodaStream had ALL OF THOSE THINGS, so why is their recently-released Super Bowl ad starring Scarlett Johansson so bad? Is it ScarJo’s monotone and wooden performance? Maybe, but they had to know she’d deliver that from the get go. Is it the weird, infomercial look and feel of the first half of the ad? Is it the awkward attempt to make the ad “go viral” with some cliched second-half tactics (seductive dress, slow-motion sipping, wind machine, Isaac Hayes-like voiceover)?
It’s actually all of those things. But what’s most disappointing about the ad is that THIS is the work of Alex Bogusky. Those who aren’t in the ad industry probably don’t know or care who that is, and that’s okay. But if I were to name some of the work from his former ad agency, Crispin Porter + Bogusky, you’d recognize his creative genius. Bogusky is one of the masterminds behind Burger King’s creepy King ads, the very cool Mini Cooper campaign, and TheTruth.com’s anti-smoking ads.
Yeah, that’s Alex Bogusky. Back in his heyday, at least. He left the ad agency game in 2010 and he’s now a champion of the environment and the “consumer revolution.” You can see a few of those messages in the SodaStream ad below. (Note: It’s the “banned” version which contains the jab at Coke and Pepsi at the very end.) Also below is Bogusky’s classic “Wake Up with the King” commercial for BK. Feel free to compare and contrast. Well, contrast, at least. There’s really no comparison.