Interviews, insight & analysis on digital media & marketing

Advertisers Watching Ads: ‘Valentino and Lady Gaga’

By Tom Ollerton, Founder of Automated Creative.

Lady Gaga has a new album out, a movie on the cards and is the face of Valentino’s latest fragrance, Voce Viva. Vogue say that “Lady Gaga is still the reigning chameleon queen of fashion, music and film” – but does she make a good ad?

This week on Episode 19 of ‘Advertisers Watching Ads’ we hear the opinions of Tiktok‘s Kinney Edwards, MARSHeather Stuckey, Channel4‘s David Amodio and KFC‘s Jack Hinchliffe.

Is this ad a contemporary work of advertising art or is this an unimaginative use of a very famous person who has been paid a lot of money to say nice things about the brand?

KFC’s Jack Hinchliffe had some positive comments such as “I like the femininity of it” and “I like the fact it isn’t overtly sexualised” however he countered that “I’m not convinced I’m going to remember who it was for or anything about it” and that “it wasn’t particularly memorable or distinctive.” A perfume ad that Jack is a fan of is Johnny Depp’s Sauvage ad where he is digging a hole in the desert. But Valentino’s effort falls short for Jack stating that “there’s some power to it but just feels a bit pedestrian”

Jack’s takeout for advertisers is that brands should make full use of their assets and integrate them into the brand’s storytelling.

MARS’s Heather Stuckey’s believes that, despite having a lot of time for Lady Gaga and having all the elements of an ad she would like, she says “It fell a little bit flat for me” and that “the brand itself was such an afterthought.” Harsh words indeed – but she asks “How does this relate back to the product they are trying to sell?”.

Heather points out that the TVC doesn’t tell the full story and that it requires the viewer to do some digging to understand the context of the song and why she’s doing what she’s doing – which presumably doesn’t mention a suitcase of unmarked fivers.

Heather’s key takeaway from this is that there’s a lot going on with this ad, it needs to be simplified and the product needs to be weaved into the overarching larger messages.

TIkTok Kinney’s says, “It was a perfume ad but it spoke on another level in terms of cultural diversity” but the brand needs to think about how to make it work on TikTok. Valentino needs to go deeper and help the audience understand the meaning behind the lyrics so that they can re-interpret it.

Kinney’s takeaway: Learn how to activate a community on TikTok by understanding how the audience can take part in retelling the story.

Channel 4’s David Amodio believes the brand has done amazingly well to land Gaga and that “it’s beautifully crafted, very slick and aspirational.” David sees an opportunity to do a click-to-buy mechanic on VOD or introducing an option for the audience to find out more about the ad itself and Gaga’s involvement. 

Takeaway – Sweat your assets, push as far as you can and use a diverse cast.

Come back next week for the latest episode of ‘Advertisers Watching Ads.’

Opinion

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