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If I had written the Motrin Ad…

November 17th, 2008

This is what is what you would have heard if I had written the Motrin Ad:

Lately, we’ve noticed that wearing babies in a sling or carrier has gotten quite hip.

But did you know that moms, dads, grandparents, siblings…all caregivers, have been wearing slings for centuries? Babywearing has been shown to stimulate and improve the cognitive, physical and emotional health of infants and toddlers. And needing a nurturing and handy way to keep babies close and safe while you take care of daily life is an age-old necessity that crosses not only the lines of history, but also those of geography, race, religion, class and culture.

Babywearing is something that many people on this planet have in common, but it’s not the only thing.

Studies show that many caregivers don’t know the correct way to wear their slings. This can cause a lot of unnecessary pain in your neck, back, hips and knees. And, sometimes, even carrying the weight of your baby correctly can cause some discomfort. We highly recommend that you find a resource online or at your local baby store to help you wear your baby safely and correctly – for the health of both you and your baby.

In the meantime? Try some Motrin. Many of us are parents too, and we feel your pain.

In honor of International Babywearing Week and caregivers everywhere.


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17 Responses to “If I had written the Motrin Ad…”

  1. Jane on November 17, 2008 11:59 am

    I did a rewrite yesterday here:

    http://twitteromics.com/motrinmoms-how-that-motrin-web-ad-should-be-done

    (scroll past the analysis of where the ad went wrong if you only want to read the copy)

    My tactic was to simply use the original, change a few words, and demonstrate how a slight modification can alter tone and approach.

    I like yours for bringing up how incorrect configuration of babywearing CAN be injurious, and for reminding everyone that in other cultures for thousands of years, babies have been worn.

  2. Julie Roads on November 17, 2008 12:04 pm

    Jane! This is fantastic…I love your approach. The whole post is great. Also – your brilliance in writing that they can buy your words with the refund from the ad agency is fabulous!!!
    Love it! Will tweet about it asap…

  3. Sandra Foyt on November 17, 2008 12:10 pm

    Perfect! It still sells Motrin, without offending the consumer. And, I’m guessing, there would be no strategically placed cuckoo sound either.

  4. Julie Roads on November 17, 2008 12:12 pm

    No, Sandra – maybe some bone cracking or something, but no cuckoo sounds!

  5. Mary Wehrle on November 17, 2008 12:45 pm

    I love your wording! This is much better and would have gone a long way to create a positive conversation on line. Had this approach been used, a lot of bloggers would have focused the discussion around the company endorsing baby wearing not just for moms but for all the care givers in a babies life. I like that you take the message beyond just moms and into the world of dads and grandparents. They should so hire you! Nice job!

  6. Melissa, Multitasking Mama on November 17, 2008 1:10 pm

    Much better- they should hire you :-)

  7. Barbara on November 17, 2008 1:52 pm

    Great points Julie. Curious to see how they will clean this up.

  8. Anne Mayhew on November 17, 2008 2:39 pm

    Wonderful replacement – have you forwarded it to them? Just shows they should have started with a talented and creative mom to begin with!

  9. Tawnya on November 17, 2008 3:55 pm

    I think your version would have been a big hit with all the moms…

  10. Motrinmoms: Tying up the loose ends | Crunchy Domestic Goddess on November 18, 2008 3:16 am

    […] Julie Roads: If I had written the Motrin ad […]

  11. Lisa Badalamenti on November 18, 2008 3:20 am

    I love your wording! This is much better and would have gone a long way to create a positive conversation on line. Had this approach been used, a lot of bloggers would have focused the discussion around the company endorsing baby wearing not just for moms but for all the care givers in a babies life.

  12. phyllis on November 18, 2008 9:56 pm

    well said!!!!

  13. Bobette Kyle on November 19, 2008 6:25 am

    Great writing, Julie. I think your approach makes much more sense. There are some instances where tongue-in-cheek or sarcastic humor work, but it was highly inappropriate for this campaign.

    Marketing 101 says you want to *attract* your ideal customers, not outrage them. Plus, pleasing the influencers (i.e. high-profile bloggers and influential Website owner) is very good. Pi**ing them off is very, very bad. If Motrin Brand Management actually understood babywearing — and babwearing moms — going into this campaign, the results would have been quite different. Perhaps there *is* a babywearing segment who’s overriding motive is fashion and who tend to whine “what about me,” but the price Motrin has paid in attempting to attract them is far too steep IMO.

    BTW, I’ve added your post as a resource in my Motrin Marketing Collides With Social Media blog post.

  14. Nakisha on November 19, 2008 10:29 am

    This is great. Because it shows that not only moms carry the baby/toddler and it sympathies with us but not in a condescending way. Great ad!!!

  15. Motrin Messes with Mommy-Bloggers and Loses - Scott Vandehey's Blog on November 21, 2008 5:57 pm

    […] by reaching out to their target audience to begin with. At least two bloggers have suggested rewrites. But mostly, everyone is impressed at the speed that this became a serious […]

  16. Motrin Messes with Mommy-Bloggers and Loses at Space Ninja on November 21, 2008 6:06 pm

    […] by reaching out to their target audience to begin with. At least two bloggers have suggested rewrites. But mostly, everyone is impressed at the speed that this became a serious […]

  17. Any-Mom » The Motrin Mess on December 6, 2008 8:06 pm

    […] more: For the text of an alternative ad, see http://writingroads.com/blog/if-i-had-written-the-motrin-ad/520. Another great post on this topic is […]

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