26 April 2006

Open up and say ... Ikeeaah

If you'll pardon the lame ass Poison (as in the glam band) reference there, if you were hapily ensconced in an innerwest enclave of groovy yet distinctive and handmade* homewares, you will have happily missed the kerfuffle in Adelaide last week as they got their very own ikea store!

I laughed to myself like a sad old nanna in a large rattly house when I saw that they'd picked it up on MediaWatch on monday night. A very rough estimate by a local PR guru put the value of all the frothing at over 100k, easy. It was a very big deal. I was here. People thought there would be traffic queues delaying entrance to the airport. There weren't. Anyway, I've got a very trivial bit of marketing waffletalk to share, just for my own amusement, and if you'd rather eat glass than talk about marketing tactics then just look away now.

Clearly all the Adelaide competitors to aforementioned flatpacked furniture specialists are bunging on as much tv advertising to avoid taking a major hit. You remember them.. "love it, at LeCornu" etc.. and they all feature a barrage of products and prices kind of spinning and leaping out of the screen. Now icky-ah have a totally different tack. Their classy, clean, ad feautres a six year olds voice talking about what he likes about the store. Not a single couch or magenta lamp to be seen. Just some chicken nuggests and a ball crawl. Perhaps there's some soft-focus flat packs being surreptitiously slid into the station wagon as he says "not bad ...for a shop". So right, in layman's terms, they're not actually trying to sell you any furniture, they're trying to sell you an experience. Horrible, isn't it? Its a leisure activity, all this shopping business. With its own car park, playpen and cafe. And if you happen to buy some nice homewares at the same time, thats just lovely for them isn't it. Now I am first to admit Ikea has some nice things, I've had a good old browse there on more than one occasion. But better that kind of consumption be done by consenting adults, in the privacy of their own credit ratings, surely?

*By old Sri-lankan and Peruvian ladies.


El Bizarro said...

Of course, the ad isn't for "us" it's for the 6 year kids. Seriously, as any good cold blooded shape shifting human flesh eating reptile from a parallel dimension marketing exec would be at pains to smuggly point out, modern marketing is all about targeting children and harnessing the "nag factor". Clearly, Ay-KeeYah! (emphasis mine) sees the way to their customer's wallets is through their sprogs. Next time you're passing by one of their stores and count the number of Volvos with bassinets in them and you'll get the picture.

To qoute Saint Bill - "If you're in marketing, do us all a favour and kill yourself"

'nuff said

BSharp said...

Nooo thats not my point! (okay granted its a small semantic differnce in analysis) but they *are* talking to the adult viewer. (Never mind the 8pm screening time) They are selling you your child's happiness, a peaceful weekend outing, an activity to take up the whole afternoon.. they are encouraging you buy your leisure time. In a flat pack. With nuggets.

El Bizarro said...

Nup, they're selling it to the kids baby. What person who can afford to buy Ayyyykeeeeeyah! (emphasis mine) would even be home by 8pm, given that Australians work the most hours of any developed nations? Play parks and fluffy animals don't twig with 'dults. A scenairio:

Middle class family out driving in family car (which may have even been chosen by the child as well), potentially going from one govt. approved family activity to their homeswhen they pass by the Aykeeyah store. 6 year starts nagging to stop for the fun park and nuggets which he/she/it has seen on the cathode ray nipple the night before while waiting for Daddy to come home from work. The parents eager to please their child out of a nagging sense of guilt about neglecting them by working so much, do as child asks and end up buying mountains of useless shit for the two spare rooms in their massive house they never spend any waking time in anyway.

The fact that it is a child who presents the ad says it all. This is evil suck satans cock marketing 101, and it's a growth industry.

meririsa said...

Would be great if nfp or charity organisations started using the same tactics... greenpiece using sad tales of lampooned whales "mummy, daddy, why don't we help the whales?" or world vision etc etc

BSharp said...

I think we should just keep on lampooning those whales.

meririsa said...

Actually - this targetting ads at parents to make Kid management easier or using the pester factor has been around since we were kids I'm sure. My parents limited our commercial telly viewing, talked us through ads, taught us to think about them objectively, and rarely gave in (I had to save up for my own things with my pocket money if I wanted them so badly - good test of how badly you want things). Parents today with common sense should be able to do the same. Sure my parents are pretty smart and mum was around most of the time during the day, but still.

mermaidgrrrl said...

I love the fact that at Ikea they don't even pretend to give you assistance, whilst at Le Cornu of all places I was actually snobbed so badly (snobbed! By Le Cornu staff!) that I ended up refusing to buy a sofa from them. I must have looked really particularly homeless-ish that day for Le Cornu to snub me.