Sunday, February 15, 2009

Their flower power is no match for my glower power

I've said this before, but be wary of attacking competitors when your own product is hardly the pinnacle of necessity. Right, Teleflora?

See, Teleflora, here's the thing. When you're talking about what flowers in a box might "say"? What they're "saying" in reality would already be determined before the person even opened the box. Because if there's actually a problem with getting flowers in a box, the script for this commercial would not start like this:

Gary: "Hey Diane, flowers came for you!"
Bald Guy: "Oooh, flowers for Diane!"
Woman: "I never get flowers!"

They sound pretty impressed, in spite of the fact that they can all see that the flowers are in a box. Therefore the rest of this commercial (which we'll get to in a minute) is actually completely meaningless. I would probably have started it more like this:

Gary: "Hey Diane, flowers came for you!"
Bald Guy: "Oooh, flowers for - wait a second, are those in a box?"
Woman: "I don't know about this..."

And then, on to the rest of this nonsense.

Flowers: "Oh no! Look at the mug on you, Diane! You're a train wreck! That's why he only sent a box of flowers."

Why would the box of flowers insult itself? Whatever. Look. If he bothered to send flowers at all, there's no way he actually thinks this. For the sake of argument, let's say that sending a box of flowers is, in fact, totally lame. What woman would receive said flowers and decide that he thinks she's ugly?

Flowers: "Go home to your romance novels and your fat, smelly cat!"
Voiceover: "This Valentine's Day, don't send flowers in a box - you never know what they'll say."

They'll say, "I cared only just enough to send a trite gift that required effectively no thought on my part." Here's the problem where Teleflora is concerned: so would any flowers. Because sending someone flowers is a lame gift. I realize it's traditional, but let's not pretend that it takes any more thought than, "Hey, maybe I should get her some flowers! I'm so getting laid tonight." It's just like a box of chocolates - sure, you might like getting a box of chocolates on Valentine's Day, but no one in their right mind really thinks of that as some grand romantic gesture.

Flowers: "No one wants to see you naked!"

I'm a little surprised they got away with this. But, again, I call bullshit. If he sent flowers at all, and there wasn't a card included that said "It's over," then he wants to see her naked. I'm confused as to what perspective this ad is even taking. No guy who's sending flowers in a box is doing so thinking, "That hideous hag only deserves a box of flowers," and no woman receiving them is thinking, "He thinks I'm a hideous hag who only deserves a box of flowers!" Does Teleflora think they're actually going to convince people that they should be thinking that? I'm guessing it isn't going to work.

Voiceover: "Teleflora's bouquets are hand-arranged, hand-delivered in a keepsake vase, not in a box."

"Keepsake"? Seriously? Whatever. Anyway, who gives a shit if they're "hand-arranged," honestly? Unless your boyfriend hand-arranged them himself, ladies, I don't see any compelling reason to give him more credit for calling one flower company instead of another. I guess it's nice that you don't have to scrounge up your own vase, but let's face it, these things will be dead in a week no matter what you do with them. Maybe you could put them in your "keepsake" Star Wars collectible glasses.

Voiceover: "That's the Teleflora difference."

If you actually do a little research on the interwebs, it turns out that sending flowers in a vase is pretty much standard practice. In fact, I Googled "flowers in a box," and after a wholesale florist site, the next two hits were links to videos of this very commercial. 1-800-FLOWERS, FTD and ProFlowers, the top three hits on a search for "flowers," all include vases, and 1-800-FLOWERS and FTD both tout that a local florist will hand-arrange the flowers for you. Who is Teleflora even attacking? It's like that ad Pepsi ran during the Super Bowl:

Teen 1: "Yo, man, I'm thirsty."
Teen 2: "Me too. Hey, let's crack open a frosty can of Coke with Anthrax!"
Teen 1: "That's what I'm talkin' about!!!"
[they open the can]
Talking Can: "Whoa, you two are a bunch of losers! Coke with Anthrax? Enjoy dying of anthrax!"
Teen 1: "Quick, recycle it!"
Voiceover: "Coke with anthrax in it - that isn't refreshing! Drink Pepsi and refresh everything!"

Oh, wait, that didn't happen, because only Teleflora is dumb enough to make an ad suggesting that you don't buy a product that none of their competitors is trying to sell you.

Gary: "I'd like to see-"
Diane: "Gary!"

"Don't send sexual harassment lawsuit papers in a box - you never know what message you'll send! Teller and Flores, Attorneys at Law will hand-deliver your sexual harassment suit and even give that sleazy coworker a withering look as they do so! That's the Teller and Flores difference."


Quivering P. Landmass said...

When we were doing the Super Bored Awards post, I didn't think the Teleflora spot was bad enough to get an award. But now that I know they're completely inventing a competitive advantage, I'd say they should retroactively get the SkyMall Trophy, just for sheer absurdity. Talk about living in your own world.

Anonymous said...

spot-on, as always.

Adam said...

I'd think that the women would be more insulted that they did not receive the flowers from the person that sent them. Just because some strange man gives her the flowers rather than a box, it doesn't mean that the man who sent her the flowers if off the hook methinks.

Anonymous said...

And how is there not any collateral damage here? "Flowers in a box are for losers! Buy some flowers from us!"

philip said...

I really appreciate the simpsons quote as the title.