No sooner do the horrific and heinous political commercials end than boring and banal Christmas spots pop up on the screen. And, none is worse than the tri-state Lexus "December to remember" campaign.
These spots are ubiquitous and seem to have been running every Christmas season since Scrooge & Marley set up their accountancy way back when. They’re also a real turn-off. There’s always some heartwarming scene that ends with someone walking outside to find themselves the lucky recipient of a brand new Lexus. Now, don’t get me wrong. There’s nothing better than a Lexus. But, these commercials are a real disconnect from an image standpoint.
Lexus is all about perfection (i.e.trouble-free driving, stylish lines and a great ride). But, the commercials could be about any car: a Hyundai, a VW, a Toyota or, dare I say it, even a Chevy. There’s nothing that leverages the brand’s points of differentiation.
I know, I know. It’s a Christmas spot. But, like the majority of political ads, the Lexus commercials fail to break through from the six million other sickly-sweet holiday spots cramming the airwaves. A brand and car as unique as Lexus deserves a creative treatment to match. Dads handing over car keys to daughters or wives doing the same for hubbies is just plain lame. Especially when it runs Christmas after Christmas after Christmas. Pardon me, Lexus, but it’s time for peace on earth, good will to men and TV spots that are a little less nauseating. As Scrooge would say, "bah humbug."
Great point, Michelle. The only real difference between the retailers you mention is price. That’s why Wal-mart squeezes suppliers and hires dollar-a-day labor in countries like China. It’s all about being the low-cost provider.
This Lexus campaign has been around for at least 5 years, so it must be working, one would assume. It is trite for sure. The genre that seems to be repeating itself in new commercials this season is “don’t need Santa.” Best Buy, Wal-Mart, and Home Depot all seem to have the same strategy… Santa comes home early, or the kids don’t even notice him in the living room, etc. because the gifts from ____ (insert indistinguishable retailer here) has already been there. There has to be something differentiating about these retailers… where is it?!
Michelle Edelman is director of strategic planning at NYCA, a full-service marketing agency that grows businesses with inspired ideas. To find out how NYCA can grow your business, log on to http://www.nyca.com.