Grey takes Pantene along the ’empowerment’ ads route

I wonder what Julian Koenig, the copywriter who wrote VW’s iconic ‘Think Small’ campaign for DDB, would have made of the current trend of what we might call ’empowerment’ ads?

Would he have applauded the move of girls out of the kitchen (to which they they were mostly confined in his day unless they were decorously sipping a martini or smoking an improbably long cigarette) or regarded it as a weaselly way to sell the same old, same old?

The trend really got going with Dove’s ‘Real Beauty Sketches’ from Ogilvy, still picking up gongs at this year’s Cannes Lions, and now Procter & Gamble (which has already produced a paean of praise to ‘Moms’) is having a crack with an interesting campaign by Grey New York for Pantene.

It’s as artful as you’d expect from the rejuvenated Grey but….is ‘don’t be sorry, be strong and shine,’ courtesy of a certain hair product, the equivalent of the client wanting to make the logo rather too large? Sure it’s a pun of sorts, but it might also be seen as a non sequitur.

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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.