The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]


Are Hotels Telling Us Something …
November 28, 2006, 12:14 pm
Filed under: Comment

This is a photo of the bed I had at the Shangri-La Bangkok. 

As you can see, it was bloody huuuuuuuuuuuge – infact it was too huge … I actually woke up sideways across the bed which even for a person who likes space when he sleeps, is abit too much space.

Why did they do this? 

Well, it’s probably because they ‘can’ … plus it fits with their ‘Fit For A King’ image … but seriously, do they know something we don’t?

Are hotels expecting us all to get so fat that ‘width’ is going to be the ultimate ‘comfort selling point’ for Hotels, Cars, Airlines?  I mean, this bed was actually wider than bloody it was long. Mad!

Well, I think the Hotels could be thinking ahead, especially when Macca’s – despite all their ‘health attempts’ – launch the World’s first Unhealthy, Health Menu in Singapore …

For those who can’t read it properly, Macca’s have started offering Garden Salad, Apple and Sweetcorn.

All good eh? 

Well sort of … except Macca’s then go and ruin it by selling the Garden Salad with ‘1000 Island Dressing’, the Apples with Caramel Sauce’ and the Sweetcorn with ‘Butter’.

Jesus … they just can’t help themselves can they???? 

OK, so Macca’s in Asia hasn’t copped as much crap as in Western Markets, but the diet out in Asia is far from healthy – despite what many say – and this sort of thing is hardly conducive to Macca’s global attempt to ‘clean up their image’. 

Mind you I don’t blame them for doing it as they’re only addressing ‘human nature’.

Eh???

Well, when I worked on Diet Tango in the UK, we knew that people – even those who claimed they were ‘trying’ to be healthy’ – tended to eat tons of bad-but-tasty grub like chips, gravy, curry, sausage etc etc.  To make themselves ‘feel better’, they would do something like buy a diet drink or walk up the stairs to the office [even if there were only about 3 of them] in some misguided belief that it would counteract the 8 trillion calories they’d just stuffed down their gob.

It led to some of the best radio ads ever with the great line, “YOU NEED IT BECAUSE YOU’RE WEAK’ … and it really tapped into the psyche of the Tango consumer – beer bellied men [or kids who aspired to be beer bellied men, haha] who realised that if their stomach continued to grow at the rate it was going, they’d have to stop kidding themselves they’re just a ‘few pounds’ over their perfect weight, because they wouldn’t be able to get close enough to the mirror to check themselves out!

Of course the word ‘DIET’ tends to be quite negative for brands – infact Diet Coke is one of the few [except in some countries where it is named Coke Light] that has managed to get away with it – but I wonder if that is part of the reason obesity is getting so bad – because the word DIET has been replaced by things like LOW CALORIES / LOW FAT when in reality, the food they refer too are generally so chock-a-block with other crap, they are about ‘healthy’ as a bacon and egg sandwich smothered in HP sauce.

Brands and people are living in a World of denial – and whilst this might be good for Hotels selling bigger beds etc etc – I really feel it’s time that brands who ‘claim’ to care about their consumers choice, stop having a foot in both camps [they call it ‘consumer choice, ha!] and come out and attack the issue head on. 

First thing?  Stop using the word ‘healthy’ when they’re not that healthy … stop using the word ‘energy’ when they’re referring to tons of sugar … stop using the words ‘low fat’ when they’re full of every other thing that’s bad for you – because if we don’t, the real industries of growth will be those who can best exploit the restrictions faced by ’bigger people’ [ie Hotels and the Airlines who are starting to charge ticket prices based on the persons ‘weight’] and creativity is already about as low as it can go.

What really, really, really bugs me is that WEIGHT WATCHERS should be the brand that takes this issue head-on – be the brand that fights for peoples health rights – but I guess they are another perfect example of a company who say’s one thing and then acts totally in the other way because money is more important that principals.

Sure we have to make money … but at any price?  Unfortunately, that seems the ‘corporate way which sorts of makes a mockery of companies [and agencies] that say they are ’strategically focused!’

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1 Comment so far
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The brands that start to be honest and do something about it can reap so many benefits. (As Birds Eye are doing in the UK)

Comment by Rob Mortimer




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