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Denny's Daily Zinger: The Buffoon of Hotels.com

March 13, 2014 By Denny Hatch
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Hotels.com is a good service for a lot of reasons.

Alas, the current TV ad campaign is an exercise in smartypants stupidity.

The new spokesman—Captain Obvious—is a costumed, brash boob without one scintilla of charm or class.

Groucho Marx Remembered
"I don't want to join any club that would accept me as a member," Groucho once said.

I would never stay in a hotel that would accept Captain Obvious as a guest. He is unpleasant, disruptive and a consummate jackass.

Great Spokesmen
[In the media player at right] is a galaxy of corporate spokesmen from years past. They are upbeat, often sophisticated, with a twinkle in the eye. Their message is an honest pitch for a product they believe in and love.

I would welcome the opportunity to entertain any of these gentlemen in my home.

Even the chicken kings—Col. Harland Sanders and Frank Perdue—would no doubt have fascinating life stories to keep a dinner party mesmerized.

We all relished David Ogilvy's elegant entries: Schweppes Commander Whitehead and The Hathaway model with his mysterious eye patch.

But the brash, humorless Captain Obvious? Give us a break!

Takeaways to Consider

  • David Ogilvy on Corporate Spokespersons

If the client moans and sighs,    
      Show his logo twice the size.
If he still should prove refractory,
     
      Show the picture of his factory.
But only in the direst case
     
      Should you show the bastard's face!

  • Captain Obvious? Pshaw!
  • Check out "Obvious Adams" (opens as a PDF) by John D. Updegraff. It's free. You'll love it.
Denny Hatch is a copywriter, designer and direct marketing consultant. Click on the title to read the first three chapters of his new book, "Write Everything Right!" No cost. Contact him at dennyhatch@yahoo.com.
 
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