diumenge, 28 de març del 2010

Barça, Estrella Damm, Catalonia or everything? - Explanation

A few weeks ago I left some pending questions and explanation about a current beer ad which I posted precisely because it is, for me, much more than a mere beer ad. Let's look at the questions more deeply.

- What do you think of the ad?
Like MaryMoon and Isabel, I like the ad. I think that it is the job of good publicists and really creative. And the more I watch the ad, the more I see that it has multiple techniques that I could not appreciate at first sight and that make me think that it is not such a simple and ordinary ad.

Pretty interesting I found the comparison Derek makes. As he says, American beer ads seem to have a very particular structure and particular targets is a format we rarely see. Of course, there have been ads in this mood, like Budweiser ads during late nineties or early two thousand. But still, Budweiser is not an Spanish/Catalan beer and most time they had no spoken words or they were subtitled (the videos Derek linked on the comments made me think of them).

With this, I am not saying that Spanish/Catalan beer ads do not have an structure or a target. Indeed they have, but it is not the same as American beer ads. When I watch a Spanish beer ad, I do not feel it is targeted at 21-30, I rather feel anyone in the age of doing so can enjoy it. And more that being funny, I think they try to be original and ever-lasting, giving beer moderate consumption a high status. I wouldn't say something reserved to intellectuals though, I am more inclined to think that they try to appeal everyone. And this is the case of this particular ad.

I think it is targeted as everyone on legal age, using Barça to do so. The link appears so simple to me: lots of people like Barça, lots of people will like this beer. Barça is something great (the best team in the world!), this beer sponsors Barça, this beer MUST be great. I could go even further to give the nationalist sense I find in the ad, but this is answered in other questions and the link then can be easily established ;).

- Do you think it is a good beer ad?
Here I find divided opinions.

Well, I think it is a good ad and very original in its construction. It does mention the brand "Estrella Damm" but it gives more weight to Barça images and the poem, which I think is a good technique. You get the idea of the ad uniqueness (nothing of the kind before) and you can establish a connection with the brand it announces. Strictly, the product appears in the end, but the imprint of the ad is so deep that it makes you remember which brand did it and what it announced. This is, mostly, what Isabel pointed out.

I do not know if it is a good beer ad, though. Because...what is a good beer ad?

Other campaigns by "Estrella Damm" have been equally good and successful, like last summer ad with the song "Summercat" by the Swedish group Billie Vision & The Dancers, filmed in the Balearic Island of Formentera. The ad is the videoclip by this group and it incorporates images of Estrella Damm bottles. I recommend you watch it.

This summer ad used a complete new ad formula and it was successful. The ad I posted follows the same style and has been equally successful. So then...it must be a good beer ad...I think...

- Do you think it tells something to the (Catalan) audience?
Indeed. The poem tells people (Catalans) can achieve their goals, that nothing is impossible. I do not remember the Generalitat's campaign MaryMoon mentions, but I do see the positive turn the ad gives it.

- Does it tell something more to you, rather than just advertising beer?
It does tell something more if you can give it a context which allows interpretation.

- Do you like the ad text?
I agree to all of you. It is a nice lyric poem, craftily built. And combining it with music gives it a nice rhythm.
Isabel said that she liked he different accent it showcases. Well, she's come to my favourite subject :D and I feel the need to comment something about it.

The poem showcases differents accents but not dialectal accents. The general dialect is spoken standard Catalan. Most of the actors in the ad are professional actors or TV presenters and they speak in a quite neutral accent. Well, with the exception of the two cookers, which have the characteristic accent of Barcelona.

Probably, what Isabel noticed is the accents of non-Catalan people speaking Catalan, namely the young man working with wood and the boy in the skateboard. The young man is probably from Northern Europe (his way of pronouncing "r", his blue eyes and fair hair make me think it) and the boy is South-American (I would even venture Argentinian...)

- Do you think it is a nationalist ad?
There is a very good point that Anna made. She mentions that these ad might use football to convey national feelings. Indeed Catalans, may easily interpret it as such, but it is not the typical "we're good and the others aren't"; to use Isabel words, it tries to raise the spirits of Catalans. It is very easy to understand the poem as somehow nationalist and it make sense in a nationalistic frame.

On the other side, it could also make sense in a non-nationalist context (and hence, the "could be" in MaryMoon's comment. However, I am inclined to think the ad is indeed nationalist, and what is more, it represents, for me, an "inclusive" nationalism: some of the speakers are Catalan well-known actors or TV presenters and an also some non-Catalan people appear. Besides, there are all those images of Pep Guardiola and Barça players. The ad uses all this to convery that Catalans not only accept plurality, but also integrates it in the culture. And there is the music, which integrates more instruments every time and become more joyful. The feeling you have when you finish the ad is: Wow, WE are great! But you do NOT feel that others are not great as well.

Maybe I wouldn't agree with Isabel when she mentions that it can imply that independence can be reached, as I think the ad does not go so far and deep, as I said before I think it is not a separatist ad (note that I make a difference here between nationalism and separatism/independentism). But her interpretation makes perfect sense.

- Do you think it seems to mix things up?
No discussion on that ;). It mixes things up: football, beer, Catalan pride in its people and nation. And it does so in a positive way. And what is more: it has been craftily manipulated to seem "natural". Here I have a negative criticism on the ad: it can seem to build on the tendency to mix everything up. In Catalonia, as I said many other times, everything can have a sociopolitical turn. Look for example, at the insight MaryMoon does about Joan Laporta, current Barça president, who, taking advantage of Barça's achievements and position, has launched an independentist political campaign. I might agree to some ideas Laporta may have, but I do not approve his way of speaking them by mixing football and politics. Talking about it requires another post!

Well, I think this is it. I probably skipped some of the appreciations in the comments (hope you can forgive me :)...). Thanks for your collaboration!

3 comentaris:

MaryMoon ha dit...

Anna, I meant the old campaign... "La feina mal feta no té futur//La feina ben feta no té fronteres", from the Generalitat when Pujol was still the President. I was a child... you're too young to remember!

Isabel ha dit...

Aha, I knew it! I had this weird feeling that there may be some non-native Catalan speakers in that ad... I wasn't sure because I thought it could either be that or they could be using an accent I was not familiar with.

What about the guy in the lighting studio? The redhead with the yellow and brown (or red?) checkered shirt. His accent sounds odd to my ears.

This is why I love this ad so much. When I watch it, I feel included. I've been trying to figure out why Catalan Nationalism feels quite different from Basque Nationalism and I'm starting to think that it's due to the the brand of nationalism being inclusive... at least, that's how I perceive it to be.

Anònim ha dit...

Do not get confused by Damm. The company used to belong to a very well known fascist, that wanted to be allied to Hitler prior to end of WW2. Later was Franco's preferred minister. Thats were Damm comes from...catalan? Ha!