June 11, 2013

Audience: Modern-day moms and (especially) dads who have an emotional reaction to the timeless appeal of Tide and Downy


Message: Tide and Downy are the laundry detergents for modern-day moms and dads


Success or failure: This message successfully communicates the fact that Tide and Downy are “great on their own” and “even better together.”  But it also acknowledges the role of the modern-day dad – an acknowledgment that both men and women welcome with open arms.  Here at m+p, we’ve found that household roles, chores, and decision-making are changing.  And if you want to stay ahead of the game, you’ve got to make Mom and Dad the targets of your message.  Time and again, we’ve seen genders react to messages very differently.  We specialize in finding the sweet spot that appeals to both – and we know it’s no small task.  Tide and Downy found that sweet spot, and we give them our wholehearted stamp of approval.


Why: Dads today are not incapable fools or ignorant children whose wives must keep them in check.  So why have marketers, up until recently, continued to portray them in this light?  We’re thinking of Huggies’ controversial, “Have Dad Put Huggies to the Test” campaign, which the diaper company dramatically altered after receiving widespread criticism from insulted dads who felt the company had reduced them to inattentive dummies.

Modern-day dads participate in carpool, cook dinner, and wash clothes.  They’re playful, helpful, loving, and bright.  Tide and Downy know this, and they articulate the point perfectly in “The Princess Dress.”  The message here is simple, yet effective.  Dads today play an active role in keeping their families clean, healthy and happy – and they can count on Tide + Downy every step of the way.


Best line: “Since I’m the one who has to do the laundry, I do what any expert dad would do: I let her play Sheriff.”

We love this modern-day dad’s explicit, yet humorous acknowledgment of the role he plays in his daughter’s life.

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