Friday, January 07, 2011

your fish will... what?

I may be shooting myself in the foot by confessing there may not be a blog entry in this. The thought, though, is kinda stuck in no-man's land... it's too big for a facebook post, but (probably) too small for a blog post. I'm not sure what's in between those two. Maybe a tumblr post, but, as you will notice (if you instinctively click links just because they're there - in which case I have some Nigerian friends who would like your contact details) I haven't actually posted anything at tumblr.

Anyway, we were in a well-known pet factory yesterday (yessss...getting a £*&%@&% kitten, o yay, but don't get me started on that!) and I saw a sign, which for several reasons made me chuckle.

Now, I enjoy advertising when it's done well. I still don't think I buy into it, but the experts would disagree. They would say that when I reach for those "specials" at the end of the supermarket aisle I do so, not because I actually need/want that product, but because it is placed eye-height, there's soft, soothing music playing, there are no clocks in my vision, and there is the smell of freshly baked bread wafting through the air-conditioning system.

I don't know. I just thought we needed weet-bix. Go figure.

So, when I saw this yesterday, I thought O.M.G. What?

I realise advertising/marketing's number one target is the emotions. And if you're in the pet factory business, appealing to people's emotional attachment to their pets is gold! But come on. A funny photo of a cute little puppy is one thing. A kitten mid-antic is a sure winner. Even a parrot who can swear like a sailor in three languages is right up there in cute-value.

But..."your fish will love these"??? Who came up with that little gem? It's one thing to anthropomorphise a Schnauzer (who demonstrably has some modicum of emotional facility); it's a whole other thing to ascribe to a fish the loftiest of human capacity. Your fish will love these? Yeah right.

Your fish will swim past it and before it's out of eye-sight have forgotten it. At least, I guess, it will be a whole new exciting experience for fishy on the return journey from the far side of the bowl to see anew the characters from one of the most popular fish movies of all time. But in saying that I may be undermining my own argument and have fallen into the trap so cleverly designed by the "your fish will love these" people!

Fish (apparently) have a memory-span of about 3 seconds. Only slightly shorter than my 6 year old, but in my most generous moments I reckon Joshua has more capacity to "love" than your average goldfish. Of course, I could be wrong there.

So, and no offense to stupid people, but surely only the most stupid would be pulled in by this most basic attempts to appeal to the emotions. Oohhh...wouldn't little Guppylicious just LOVE that? Let's get it for him. Huh? Can we? Huh?

Good grief. I may have been sucked into buying weet-bix with fake bread smells and clockless warehouses, but I'm pretty sure even I could resist this "your fish will love these" ploy!


Anonymous said...

Well my little end of the department, are all laughing their heads off at the moment. We totally enjoy your blogs and they are tending to make morning tea fun.
So, the animal menagerie has grown by one cute kitten. You really will have to blog on the antics of newly acquired kitten, though dont imagine it will be very complimentary.
As for the advertising.."your fish will love this", well it made you stop and got you thinking, to the extent you took a photo of it! Isnt that what advertising is all about? So when are the fish and the tank going to arrive with all the toys that your fish will love!!!!!

peter said...

The point of advertising is to get you to BUY the product, not ridicule it and the concept, so at this point, given we WONT be buying any fish OR nemo ornaments, I'd say epic fail to the "your fish will love these" people.

greenfaerie said...

Thinking they couldn't afford a real advert so just made a sign by way of explanation for the product. To actually promote these they would do better to appeal to the discerning fish owners' appreciation of fine art rather than the notion of improving their pet's environment.

JackieWrites said...

I want one! Not for a fish tank which are the one animal I do not seek to share my home with (been there done that - talk about time consuming! I wasted hours watching them swim back and forth, even more fun at night with the lights out and only the tank light illuminating their fishy world, fake plant background and all), however, as a door stop or that little surprise around a corner or a welcome on the front door step! Awesome.

Perhaps Mr 3Chairs you were lucky I was in cat world when you saw these as I missed an opportunity to add yet another wee critter to our kingdom!

peter said...

Doh! I forgot my wife is the ideal consumer.

Anonymous said...

Okay, Mr 3 Chairs, point taken. But if you already had fish, swimming around in a tank that are a total time waster watching them for hours and hours as a another respondant commented. I wonder if you would have bought one or been forced into buying one by young son and the ideal consumer!

peter said...


peter said...

"the discerning fish owners' appreciation of fine art" = LOL