Insult to Injury

Maybe you’re familiar with this advertisement, but I couldn’t help but share it. Have you ever seen a more depressing ad? I mean, both my parents are already dead, and this ad manages to make me feel like one of them is going to die again any minute. And if that wasn’t enough, it clearly reminds me that I could just as easily drop dead as well. Sweet.

I’ve actually seen this ad several times while browsing the web, and I can’t help but wonder if this is target advertising at its best. Have I searched for “hospice” too many times? Or “King David Memorial Gardens Cemetery”? Or maybe just “pancreatic cancer” once?

Dear Search Engine, I think you need to rejigger some of your formula outputs. For the above searchable terms, how about generating a pleasant picture of a frolicking pony? Or a bouquet of sunflowers? Even an irrelevant Bed, Bath & Beyond ad would be preferable. And more importantly, it wouldn’t make me feel like it’s possible for my deceased parents to die all over again. I can’t even imagine what it’s like for a teenager with two living parents to see this awful ad for the first time.

I do recognize, however, that the merchant is primarily responsible for this absurdity. Why not take a different spin, Accuquote? What about images of the younger generation smiling, feeling safe, evoking feelings of protection and financial security? This is in fact the true essence of what you’re offering anyway, right?

I get what you’re shooting for: You’re trying to strike a chord. Tug at the emotional heartstrings (and clogged arteries) of America’s baby boomer generation. Fine, but I think you went too far with this one.

Again, while less relevant, I think a nice, frolicking pony would do just fine here as well. The Accuquote Pony would be a lot more pleasing to the eye than what you have going on now which, quite frankly, I can’t take my eyes away from quickly enough.

*****

What do you think?  a) Girl bent over father’s grave crying  b) Happy, smiling children evoking feelings of protection and security or c) The Accuquote Pony?

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9 responses to “Insult to Injury

  1. You should totally copyright the Accuquote Pony. I agree with you — what a turnoff of an ad. Parental guilt is powerful stuff and nobody likes to be jerked around by it.

    Found your blog linked from The Happiness Project and am enjoying it so far. Keep it up.

  2. I agree I hate that add every time I see it, and it seems like I am seeing it quite a bit, What have I been searching????
    The option is happiness and security for the loved ones we leave behind…but we all know that advertisers want to scare us. I want my family to thrive when I am gone.
    I am four year out from my cancer diagnosis, and recovering from the effects of the treatments (chemo is a bitch). Don’t call myself a survivor as I consider it an affront to all my friends/family who have not been as “lucky” as I have been.

    • Dee,

      Thanks so much for your insight, and thank you for sharing your story — I’m so glad to hear of your progress since your diagnosis, and I hope you keep reading The Infinity Game and sharing your thoughts. I am in COMPLETE agreement with you regarding the ad. Just as you said: “I want my family thrive when I am gone”. Amen.

      All my best,
      Lauren

      @laurenthaler

  3. either the children or the pony, in my opinion! I mean, I understand that everyone needs life insurance, and I”m sure my own searches on insurance is the reason I see this ad all the time now. But it is really depressing, and does need to be changed, pronto!!
    Lisa

  4. Never seen that ad before…..very depressing. And like yes1and, I found your site from The Happiness Project.

  5. I’m afraid that I am the dissenter here. People think bad things aren’t going to happen to them. Sometimes they need to be scared into realizing that bad things can and do happen, often with no warning. Things can wreck your life in a heartbeat. Too many people are woefully unprepared for tragedy, and poor planning ends up affecting them really badly. I think the image of the negative consequence is way more powerful than that of the positive consequence. Are people more likely to buy life insurance thinking of the bad consequences of failure to do so? I haven’t seen the studies, but it makes sense to me.

  6. To be honest, what bothers me most about that ad is the juxtaposition of the somber ‘What would happen to your family…’ with the excitement of being able to ‘Get a free quote!’

  7. loool! this is a great idea! 😦

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