Advertisers Don't Want You to Forget Mom on Mother's Day!

When my Mom was alive I found it difficult to decide what to do for her on Mother's Day.  Take her to lunch?  Buy her flowers?  Buy her flowers and take her to lunch?  There were other options, of course, but the point is that I never thought what I planned to do was ever enough.

In talking to friends, I find that I'm not the only one who thinks this way.  Mother's Day (and Father's Day) is sort of tricky in that they are unlike birthdays, unlike Valentine's Day, and definitely far removed from Christmas.

Those who read my blog probably know what I'm going to say next: Advertising firms are clued into this indecision-and they use it to market a wide range of products.

Mother's Day Ad # 1: The Breast Cancer Institute of Australia

Why not use Mother's Day to heighten cancer awareness?  The tagline "Please Give Generously" obviously has more than one meaning here.

It would be interesting if thousands of gallons of breast milk were donated instead of cash...  Not pleasant.  Just interesting.

Mother's Day Ad # 2: Renault

I find this ad a bit out-of-date.  It would have served well in the 1970s when women's empowerment groups were forging ahead toward liberation.

As it is now, all I can see is a poor guy who married She-Hulk.

Mother's Day Ad # 3: Meat & Livestock Australia

Egad, that's creepy!  But I'm sure his mommy loves him.

Mother's Day Ad # 4: Eternol Tint Oil Shampoo

I couldn't resist including this shampoo ad from 1942.

"Gee, mom, you look a lot prettier than the other boys' mothers."

So that's what Eddie Haskell's mom had to deal with...

Mother's Day Ads # 5 & 6: Fleurop

We've all been there-though in my case I endured far more spittle face cleanings than I did embarrassing costumes.  This is a wonderful ad campaign, banking on nostalgia to move flowers.  And it works.

Mother's Day Ad # 7: Exotica

I'm not exactly sure what Exotica sells.  In searching to find out, I encountered multiple companies with this same name.  Products/services ranged from swimwear to Dining Eco Tourism.  My favorite (just because it sounds naughty) is a German nursery for African succulents.  But there was one company that specialized in flower production and transport to Lebanon.  I suspect that's the one.

If, however, the Exotica above sells adult toys, then this ad is creepy as hell.

Mother's Day Ad # 8 & 9: Tower Records

Possibly my favorite Mother's Day ads of this year.

"Thanks for the lullabies, Mom."

Mother's Day Ad # 10: Teleflora

Thank God flowers can't really speak.  Think of how many marriages would be torn asunder-not to mention how many pissed-off moms there'd be out there.

Well, for once I'm gonna have to curb my snarky attitude and agree with the marketing firms: Don't forget your Mom on Mother's Day!

SOURCES: Ads of the World, The Inspiration Room, Ad Rants, Duke University

May 8, 2010
by J. Barker
J. Barker's picture


That's a really good idea...