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Season 4: "Negative Advertising"

Season 4: "Negative Advertising"
Airs on Radio One:
Saturday 22 May, 2010 10am
Monday 24 May, 2010 11:30am

Attack ads have become the staple of political campaigns.  Now negative advertising is gaining in popularity throughout the ad business.  But do negative ads work?  This week, Terry O'Reilly explores the attraction- and danger- of ads that take shots at rivals. He shows how some great campaigns are negative without seeming negative.  And he'll recall some notable negative campaigns that backfired.

Listen to this episode as streaming audio (runs 27:30)

On this week's show you hear some of the best examples of this kind of advertising. To whet your appetite, here are some ads Terry talks about on this week's show.

During the cola wars of the 1980's, the two big soft drinks brands played hardball, while the world watched. Coke pursued its traditional, blue skies, apple pie, feel-good demographic. Pepsi went after youth.
Here's an award-winning 1984 spot directed by Joe Pytka.

Same war, different campaign. Terry explains why this ad featuring MC Hammer was banned in Japan and what Pepsi had to change in the spot to have it air in the U.K.

What do you think of negative advertising?