There are many different types of soft loo roll on the supermarket shelves and there’s not much reason to choose Andrex above, say, Kleenex, except for one thing – the adverts.
Andrex adverts have always been about cute puppies, not butt-wiping paper. And it’s fair to say that no-one really needs to see an advert for loo roll but we all need a regular dose of cute puppies to boost our mental well-being.
The Andrex puppy campaign has worked well for many years now – in fact since 1972 – so why change things now?
In my search for an answer to that question, I found an article from the Daily Mail which says that the change is to save money but I can’t believe that it’s cheaper to make a cartoon than to sit a live puppy in front of a camera.
The article also says that no cute puppies turned up for the audition – so why didn’t Andrex’s ad agency just send out some scouts to find one? In fact, had I known they were looking, I would have pitched them the cutest, wettest little poodle/spaniel-cross puppy that I met last week on Piccadilly in the snow. Or if they’d bothered to do a bit of scouting on YouTube, they would have found this little set of quintuplet puppies that my friend Anna sent to me this morning.
It really can’t be about money because I’m pretty sure these un-cute and rather freaky-looking new cartoon puppies will not encourage anyone to go out and buy Andrex. I’d certainly bet a tenner that their sales slump from here on.
On the other hand, it does leave the advertising market open to a new kind of puppy campaign. Maybe the coalition government should start a new campaign to get people to like them. Dave and Nick could personally sponsor Battersea Dogs Home and go on regular dog-walking/meet-the-press outings. I’m sure it would be a great success.