Half Naked Hotties Sell Cross Pens
Ad Age's Bob Garfield skewers this use of sex to sell pens and the idiots that would actually buy one saying, "Some pitiful wretch will pay up to $450 to buy one. You know, the kind of hotshot who already owns the Patek Philippe watch and the Hermes neckties and the Dolce & Gabana sunglasses and the Lincoln Navigator, who pays lip service to "excellence" and "quality" but who gets no functional benefit in exchange for the obscene price premium."
He then, eloquently, brings us back down to earth, "Face it: a $1.49 Rollerball performs as well as any "fine writing instrument" on the market."
On the actual ad campaign, Garfield continues his attack, "Three ads from Carmichael Lynch, Minneapolis, apparently at a loss for anything else to say about a luxury pen, have focused instead of near-naked hotties about to do the dirty, or just finishing, and who can blame them, because they are both SOOOOOO HOT!!!!!!!!"
So, according to Garfield, sex really doesn't sell all the time. Especially for a product that has, forever, been positioned as the premium in stuffiness. He offers this final advice to A.T. Cross and Carmichael Lynch, "The way to give a product sex appeal is not necessarily to present literal images of sex in progress. Because, if it did, the Joe Lieberman campaign would suddenly get very interesting."