Girl on the Platform Smiled

[Written for my ‘Strategy & Planning’ module of my Advertising Degree]

Summer 2011 saw the release of Match.com’s newest advert, where a man armed with a ukulele and his singing voice tries to impress a woman at a train station. The advert is aimed at the 25-34 demographic (who are obviously single).

It starts with the man spotting the woman from across the platform. He begins to play his ukulele and sings about the woman. He ad libs about her, commenting on her appearance and tries to guess her age. He guesses too low and it transpires that she is 28. This subtle nod to the demographic that they are advertising to works very well, and comes off as romantically charming. The man continues to sing across to the woman until her train arrives and interrupts him. He looks crestfallen as the woman appears to have disappeared forever. As he sits on a bench on the platform she sits next to him, as she chose to leave her train.

The advert works really well and it’s execution is subtle yet cinematic. The choice of actors for the roles works well, they’re both representative of the target market. They’re both fairly attractive in their own way and neither has a particularly strong look which makes it far easier for a mass and diverse audience to relate to them.  The end of the ad tells consumers to start their love story on match.com, a strong call to action that builds on what the ad already shows.

Match.com were looking to demonstrate having what they call a ‘match moment’. After their previous ad with the accidental duet the audience was treated to another musical bit that this time is available through their facebook page to download as a song.

The ad has a romantic charm to it, it’s not too tacky, and it’s not an insincere attempt at word of mouth recommendations which seem to be becoming more commonplace with dating sites, toothpaste, insurance and whole plethora of other brands. It’s refreshingly different without being low brow or too cheesy. Having the woman come and sit next to the man, leaves the scene open to all possibilities and gives the audience reason to believe.

It manages to convey the purpose of the product and the target audience that match.com are trying to sell to. Whilst it doesn’t directly address the features and benefits of the dating site, the overall message is very clear. The features of a dating site are fairly universal and so there isn’t the need to be completely blunt.

Having the man serenade the woman is a somewhat romantic, slightly cringe-worthy approach to dating. It doesn’t feel too forced within the context of the advert, and it is certainly a memorable piece that compliments the previous advert in the series. Of course this scenario could only exist in the fantasy realms of advertising, as idealistic scenarios involving ukulele-wielding strangers would unfortunately not end so romantically.

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