The Brain Power of Marketers – Energizer Bunny Edition

May 9, 2014

Marketers like to think they’re smart. They like to think they’ve figured out how consumers think. They sometimes make silly decisions based on these oft incorrect beliefs.

Best example I can think of came up the other day during a Boston Red Sox game at Fenway Park in Boston. No, it wasn’t any of the myriad marketing campaigns plastered all over the stadium, but a discussion over batteries with Steve Garfield and my friendĀ CC Chapman.

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Quick, name a battery company icon. Unless you’re mired in the age of Eveready or Duracell, you probably came up with the Energizer Bunny. The bunny is animated, more memorable than a copper top battery or whatever Eveready puts out. And the Energizer Bunny is JUST WRONG!

As kids, we all learned the story about the tortoise and the hare. Spoiler alert – the hare is arrogant and fast and generally the stupid jock stereotype from any teen comedy movie. While the tortoise plods along at a constant speed, with predictable energy and drive making him the perfect spokes animal/mascot for a battery company.

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The stupid hare sprints ahead and shows off – generally making a donkey of himself. Alas, marketers must have missed the moral of the story – that slow and steady wins the race, because they chose the flashy, short-lived speed demon for their product mascot.

Are turtles less cute than bunnies? Perhaps. But the fact exists in this case and many others, that marketing often has no logic at its core.

What’s your take? If you think the bunny still works, do you also think the Charmin ‘enjoy the go’ commercials are genius?