Badvertising: Wachovia

Wachovia Securities has a series of ads that I find to be trite, and a waste of money for them. The copy in these ads follows a pattern of "What does X have in common with Y," where Y is some sort of financial service.

I just saw one that has a shot of a ship plowing through arctic ice. The voiceover says, "What does an ice breaker have in common with an investment bank? You need someone in the lead to crush all obstacles."

Problems with this ad: First, it's trite and simplistic. Second, even if I believe that message, all it's done is tell me why investment banks are valuable, not why Wachovia is special. Third, anyone who makes decisions to select investment banks wouldn't learn anything from, or be impressed by, an ad like this.

Another case where the only winners are the ad agency and the media.