Friday, 20 April 2012

Progressive Insurance & Quaker Oats - very deceptive

It seems that a lot of foreign owned companies want to hide any indication that they aren't Australian.
When I discovered that Red Rock Deli had made sure that their American owners (Smiths Chips & PepsiCo) are not acknowledged anywhere on their packaging or website, I've been looking out for other American/Foreign companies that are deceptively releasing products in Australia as if they are locally owned (by not declaring their parent companies, which could be seen as bad publicity for not being Aussie-Owned).

In the last couple weeks, two big name American Brands suddenly started appearing on our TV screens... and it would only be obvious to people who have spent time in America.

The first is Progressive Insurance. And the DECEPTION in this instance is redubbing their iconic commercials in "Aussie" accents.
For those who are unfamiliar, the Progressive Insurance commercials have a cult following in America, because they have this one lady (Flo) in a white "store", talking about all sorts of weird things during the commercials.
Okay... go have a look at this commercial on Progressive's own youtube channel, and watch a few others (there are heaps over the years). Flo has a very distinctive American accent, so when I saw the Aussie-dubbed version for the first time last week, it felt "wrong" because I was looking at something I was so familiar with, but not hearing it the way it should be.
Then I realised that it would have been a marketing decision.  For that American company to enter the Australian market, they would have assessed there being a certain level of resistance by consumers here if they heard the American speaking, leading them to find out that it was an American company taking our money. Marketing would have ascertained that people would be more comfortable risking their money on a local company... or at least, a company that "sounds" local.

The Second is Quaker Oats.
I saw these at a Coles Express, and immediately recognised it as being a long-time American brand (owned by PepsiCo).
Nothing so wrong there, as Oreo's broke into our market some years ago before the exchange rate was as good as it is now... it is only natural that we are going to see a lot more American brands in Australian retails stores while the AU$ is above 1 US$.
The thing that got me with Quaker Oats as being DECEPTIVE though, was when I saw the TV commercial. It emphasised the product as being made from Australian Oats, with no mention of it not being an Australian company (which it does mention on the packaging).

Maybe we should have tighter advertising laws in Australia, that forces products to declare their source (where they are made) and their owners (where the profit goes)... without being able to highlight just one, without mentioning the other that would work against them.

No comments:

Post a Comment