Some of my favorite TV commercials this holiday season are part of Target’s sarcastic “Blue Christmas” campaign. The retail chain’s edgy, slightly gloomy approach to holiday shopping stirs up conversation no matter when the commercials appear on-screen, and after a little bit of investigation, it has become apparent to me that the controversy about the campaign has extended into the online arena as well. Frequenters on many advertising and marketing-related forums and message boards weigh the appropriateness of Target’s holiday advertising this year and mixed opinions abound.
I find Target’s take on thrifty spending to be tactful and right on “target” (pun intended!)- the current recession has put a damper on the holidays for many families, and finding humor amidst this enormous crisis is one way to shed light on how Americans are coping. Why ignore the truth when it is a glaring reality that fiscal challenges are facing almost every member of our society on a daily basis? Yes, the bluntness of Target’s ads may offend more conservative viewers, who fare better when problems are kept behind closed doors, but for other avid TV watchers, the ads are easy to relate to and provide a much-needed dose of comedy. The thought of spending excessive amounts of money on holiday gifts is stressful enough for consumers when the country is NOT in a recession!
Economic hardship has been an on-going struggle throughout 2009, and although we all hope to see financial improvements in 2010, the recovery is shaping up to be a long and arduous process. In the meantime, we can all add the phrase “recessionista”* (made popular by another Target ad campaign earlier this year) to our vocabularies and try our hardest to return to normalcy next year. You can save money on your promotional products by exploring Pinnacle Promotion’s Sale and Closeouts category- the recipients of your custom imprinted giveaways will be none the wiser about how much you actually spent on the items! ;)
*Wikipedia defines “recessionista” as: “a blend of the words Fashionista and recession that describes a person who strives to remain fashionable on a minimal budget… originated in the United States during the economic difficulties of 2008.”
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