The Worst Advertisement I’ve Ever Seen

I was browsing Science Daily today and noticed the following advertisement:

HarrisonFordI spent awhile trying to figure out if it was a joke or not and have come to the conclusion that this group actually believes that people will sign their petition just because a haggard looking Harrison Ford thinks that they should.

Does this sort of advertising actually work on people? I personally don’t know anything about what Harrison Ford stands for.  Why would I blindly follow a man about whose belief system I know nothing?  I know he made a darn good Indiana Jones, but I don’t even know which political party he generally identifies with.

Too bad they didn’t use a picture of Harrison Ford from 20 or so years ago.  Maybe then I would have signed their petition. Or maybe if Hugh Jackman thought I should sign it…..

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10 thoughts on “The Worst Advertisement I’ve Ever Seen

  1. It looks like you have stumbled upon another bit of cultural evolutionary theory. The advertiser above seems to be trying to exploit a “success bias” of cultural learning. This is the idea that, all things being equal, it often pays to copy the behaviors of those that are more successful. This is a particularly good heuristic in a temporally varying environment. Boyd and Richerson’s 1985 book have some basic models of the conditions under which success biases might be adaptive.

  2. I laughed out loud when I saw this post! I’m a private pilot, and I can tell you that the advertisement only really makes sense to those who’ve been in touch with the General Aviation community, and who’ve been privy to the flurry of activity surrounding the “user fee” controversy. A bit of background – Harrison Ford is a titan in the General Aviation community, and has been one of the key leaders (read – someone who can garner public attention) on all things General Aviation. So by saying, “Harrison Ford supports this!”, what General Aviation pilots hear is, “Hey, this is a good idea!” It’s a two-fer: Pilots get the implied message, and people who have no connection to aviation might go throw in their support because, hey, a celebrity says so. In conclusion – not the worst ad ever, just a audience specific ad. Also, the advertisers(AOPA – the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, of which I am a member) must assume those who read Science Daily would be curious individuals and look up what exactly Harrison Ford supports.

    P.S. I agree with les – It’s Han, not Indy 😀

    P.S.S. The issue at hand isn’t political so much as the airline industry vs. smaller businesses and private individuals.

    • Thank you for clearing up the context, les. Every once in a while, an ad is so unclear about what it supports that the rest of us just scratch their heads. Is this an ad that is supposed to appeal only to aviators?

  3. As soon as I saw this advertisement I wanted to do whatever it was this haggard looking Harrison Ford wanted me to. If I had seen this ad in it’s natural habitat I definitely would’ve clicked on it. Sooooo… Shoot first!

  4. J. Schmeelk already said it, but I just had to say it again: Harrison Ford is a pilot, so it makes sense, even if he weren’t involved with General Aviation (which I didn’t know), to ask him to speak on behalf of this cause. As for “haggard” …well, maybe it’s just that he’s aging without the aid of plastic surgery?

  5. Only knowing Ford through his movies and interviews, I’m still interested enough to perhaps click on the Ad and see what he’s supporting. I think they should have made the plane in the background less blurry, I didn’t notice it until I looked at the ad a third time, and I certainly would have been more interested if I knew Ford was trying to do something in regards to planes, because when you bring Harrison Ford together with a plane, you just might end up with a lot of Win.

  6. Pingback: Don’t Be a Sucker 101 « Fundulus schmundulus

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