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Effective advertising or blatant mysogyny? – Guest post by Anya July 25, 2008

Posted by Raul in Blogathon, Blogathon 2008, blogosphere.
Tags: ,

This guest post was written and contributed by Anya from Structured Moments and Beyond Robson

Ahh yes, some people bike across Canada, some run for insane distances, and others… blog. YEP. Welcome me to Blogathon. My name is Anya (or Anna, if you like to be formal) and you probably don’t know who I am. I’m actually quite surprised that Raul offered me to guest blog (thanks! -EDITOR’S NOTE – I like your writing, Anya, that’s why I invited you!) and I’m not too sure how long or thought-out these things are supposed to be. If this is anything like the entries on my own blog, it will be neither long nor thought-out. That’s partly because in about 4 hours I am supposed to be in a car (perhaps driving that car) and on my way to the Pemberton Music Festival.

I’m pretending to be excited about it, but to be honest I am thinking about all the atrocities we’ll have to go through to a) drive there b) get into the venue c) set up our tents and d) somehow get out on Sunday night. 40,000 people are expected to attend. I don’t like Vancouverites enough to spend three days in close proximity with that many of them. But I digress… the other reason why my blog entries aren’t generally accessible is that when I blog for pleasure, it’s really a stream-of-consciousness kind of deal, where I just let my thoughts roam in the jungle (or more like the attic that’s stacked with old creepy dolls) that is my brain.

Oh god. I just did it. I promised that I wouldn’t talk about my blog here because, as numerous people have articulated, talking about your blog is kind of like talking about your dog or your kids. Blah, blah, it’s great, but nobody cares.

So here we go, I’ll talk about something I’ve been meaning to write about myself but haven’t gotten around to. Recently, I saw this ad for BMW on ffffound (have you seen ffffound? It’s like crack cocaine), and it got me thinking a lot about advertising.

Here’s the deal: I am on my way to getting a liberal arts degree, and I’ve loved the little bit of Women’s Studies I have taken. I’m critical, supposedly socially aware, cynical, all that good stuff. But at the same time, I currently work in marketing and I really like my job. Marketing is fascinating and it can be a lot of fun. So when I saw this ad, two parts of me reacted. The feminist me is angry at the use of women’s sexuality in a blatantly demeaning way to sell used cars. USED CARS.

Hold on there a minute, partner, BWM would say: not just any used cars (women, whatever), used BMWs. Which means quality and sexiness and beauty and everything that that girl represents. Anyways, it’s pretty despicable that BMW is recycling the same stereotypes of male sexual dominance and experience in its campaign, and perpetuating the idea that a man is the judge of a woman’s value, which he bases on her level of sexual experience. All that draws me away from this ad, and pisses me off. But the marketer in me keeps going back to this ad because it’s good. It sticks in your mind, and it works. It’s simple and effective, especially for straight men, I would imagine. So, since my readership is a lot smaller than Raul’s, I thought it might be a good place to ask for reactions about the ad over here. What do you think? Are you enraged or do you love it? Are you running to a BWM dealership with cash or with a protest sign? Let me know, I’d love to hear reactions.

That’s it for me! Happy blogging and reading, Blogathon folk! If you’d like to read more of what I have to say, you can do so at Structured Moments or over at Beyond Robson. Or follow me on Twitter or something. The great thing about Web 2.0 is that it gives you myriad stalking options!



1. nancy (aka money coach) - July 26, 2008

my short response to the advert: It utterly disgusted me.
Effective, maybe. Responsible? Epic Fail.

2. Beau de Ville - July 29, 2008

Somehow I missed this one the first time around.

I’d like to point out that’s a Greek BMW ad (note the bmw.gr web address). I think that explains a lot.

I tend towards early Lexuses or 90s Jaguars myself.

Also, the ad gets its power and message from the idea that virginity is grossly overrated in a woman (or, er, a car). Technically, that means it is subverting traditional sexual ideals (and also, er, the new-car market).

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