Use of Hitler in Biomen shampoo ad backfires for Turkey’s M.A.R.K.A agency

Agency creatives put their foot in in it now and then in their desire to be noticed but Turkish agency M.A.R.K.A unwisely donned jackboots for this campaign for Biomen shampoo, featuring one Adolf Hitler. The ad also features the somewhat contentious line: “If you’re not wearing women’s clothes, you shouldn’t be using women’s shampoo.” Right on, it ain’t.

The ad was promptly withdrawn after an outcry from American and Turkish Jewish groups among others. A pretty unrepentant agency owner Hulusi Derici said: “If Mustafa Kemal Atatürk (founder of modern Turkey and also noted for a robust attitude to ethnic cleansing) was giving a speech instead of Adolf Hitler in the commercial, people would to react as if we were mocking him. When it is Hitler, they say we are promoting him.”

But let’s try be fair. If you’re looking for someone with bad hair…

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About Stephen Foster

Stephen is a former editor of Marketing Week and London Evening Standard advertising columnist. He wrote City Republic for Brand Republic and is a partner in communications consultancy The Editorial Partnership.