Marketing Characters

I never realized before how seriously companies take advertising. I was just reading an article about characters that sell products, like The Pillsbury Doughboy, the Trix Rabbit, Ronald McDonald and the like. Companies actually have books full of rules explicitly laying out what these characters can and can’t do. It’s really kind of frightening. They actually think about things like where the Lucky Charms leprechaun, Lucky, can be seen (only in the forest), and that a shot of the Doughboy from behind wouldn’t be very flattering. Somebody actually gets paid to determine what these stupid characters do. Most of these characters follow strict guidelines where the characters are almost always perfect. I think the best part is how these characters are failing. Think of the best character spokespersons. Who’s the best? The M&M guys? I think they’d get my vote. The ad agency doing the M&M ads decided to give the candies a little spunk. They bucked the trend and came up with enjoyable commercials. Now if someone could just do that for all those goofball characters selling cereal, we’d be set.

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