Being an advertiser’s wet dream

Back in the day you never really noticed advertising. It was all cars driving around mountains in the mist and women eating chocolate in giant bubble baths. The stain-removing powers of new two-in-one Daz Ultra were about as interesting to you as the days of your kerbside refuse collection and the name of your local Conservative party candidate. It was all just boring boring blah blah blah. In fact the only ad campaign that ever engaged you was the one about AIDS with the tombstones, which kind of ruined things on THAT front for the next 20 years. Thanks very much, advertising.

So it comes as something of a surprise these days when your mouth involuntarily forms an O shape every time Cheryl Cole pops up suggesting Elnett’s new styling spray locks in moisture for three whole days. And you have to slap yourself for thinking ‘that looks really handy’ when the voice on the Persil ad explains you can remove hard-to-shift stains by simply rubbing the affected area with the dimples on the dispenser. Those new Flash wipes that come recommended by Febreze? Man, they look like a right laugh.

Gone are your Generation X years, when you were just too hip to have your head turned by anything so mainstream as an advert. Now you feel emotional during the John Lewis Christmas offering, and you probably download the track with whichever baby-sounding teen it is they’ve got doing the Elton John cover this year. The chef-endorsed stock that comes in the little jellies, the shampoo that gives you hair like a cashmere cardi, the nappies that help your baby sleep and the formula milk that it’s really OK to use because the ad says it’s better to breastfeed anyway – all this stuff means something to you now. Because it’s not just advertising any more, it’s the story of your life.

You're so mummy never misses the adverts
You’re so mummy never misses the adverts

Never before have you needed so much stuff. And never before have you stayed in and watched so much TV. You are prime rump for the clever young things in oversized glasses whose job it is to tell you how much you want all this tat. As far as marketeers are concerned, you have arrived. For you are the decision-maker, the holder of purse strings, the influencer, the doctor and the nurse, the organ-grinder and the monkey.

You’re not snobby with this new found enthusiasm for being sold to either – you are just as keen on below-the-line gimmickry as you are on the big budget TV ads. Where once your brand loyalty extended to a Boots Advantage Card – handy for buying lunch at the end of the month and an occasional bump of the medicinal in a toilet somewhere – now you think it’s Christmas when a letter from Waitrose arrives packed with coupons for £5 off your next online shop. When M&S remind reminds you about the pants you nearly bought yesterday as you browse the diet books on Amazon, you feel genuinely flattered they cared enough to get in touch. You’re all over voucher codes and catalogues and VIP cards and flash sales and buy-three-and-get-the-fourth-for-a-pound deals.

You’re an advertiser’s filthy wet dream. Now pass the Flash wipes and let’s clean up this mess.

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