Thursday, December 5, 2019

Your Advertisement Sucks, Peloton, Accept it

Whenever a big company finds itself or its products made fun of there are basically two ways they can handle it. They can accept the jokes with a good-natured, "Okay, whatever," and look pleasantly chill, or act defensive and seem tone-deaf and oversensitive. For example, when Saturday Night Live did a skit about someone in charge of Sara Lee's social media accidentally using it as if it were their own to make thirsty comments on Instagram and bemoan their love life being crappy, the real Sara Lee company responded with mild bemusement how, "“While the explicit jokes in the skit do not align with Sara Lee Bread’s brand, we know SNL pushes the envelope for laughs and are taking it all in stride." Sara Lee looked like a good sport and maybe even got some extra sales from all the hubbub. They handled things well. Peloton has done the opposite.

If you have been on the internet lately you've probably seen people making fun of an ad for a stationary bike that includes a streaming subscription to live training sessions known as Peloton. The advertisement focuses on a very pretty and thin woman who is given a Peloton by her husband on Christmas and proceeds to catalog all her process as she goes from 115-ish pounds to 110 pounds and declares--as if desperate for recognition to her recordings--how this Peloton, "Changed her life." The whole thing is awkward and cringe-inducing, and it went viral for these reasons. Apparently, Pelton does not appreciate all this, having made a press release saying people, "Misinterpreted," their advertisement.

It is a bad ad.
This press release--which included excerpts from three whole emails that had been sent to them expressing support for the ad--reads as self-pitying and isn't a good look. Perhaps Peloton has reason to be upset, with their market-share taking a hit due to some backlash from the ad, but maybe if they instead embraced this absurdity that could actually help. I mean, how many people had zero clue what Peloton was before this ad and now maybe those folk are at least curious about the brand? Seriously, Peloton, capitalize on this buzz and you can turn lemons into delicious and profitable lemonade, or you can sit around simply whining about your lemons.

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