Snickers Pulls 'Kiss' Website, Sales May Drop

snickers_superbowl.gif

Apparently, the backlash over the Snickers Super Bowl commercial in which two men end up kissing after eating a Snickers bar from opposite ends was too much for the company to take and, as a result, the candy maker has taken down the commercial's accompanying website, afterthekiss.com. Typing in the URL simply redirects to the Snickers site.

While we liked this spot purely for its shock value, there's a faintly high probability this will have a very real negative affect on sales. Can you imagine the looks one will now receive from the checkout clerk when they buy a Snickers bar? That's just way too much snickering for most people to take and there's plenty of other perfectly good candy choices with far less embarrassment attached to them.

This just might be one of the most powerful Super Bowl spots ever to have run. Powerful, of course, in a very negative way harming the brand's sales significantly. Beware all you hipster creatives who think your ivory tower, insider coolness will be welcomed by all. Hardly. Remember, there's a whole lot more people living outside your world that in.

Somewhere along the line, this industry forgot that Super Bowl ads still need to accomplish what advertising is meant to do: sell. It's perfectly fine for advertising to go for the laugh, the tear, the shudder but it still has to sell or else it's all a pointless waste of money. It's too bad that many in the industry creating ads have forgotten that and have put too much effort into the creation of entertainment at the expense of advertising primary function: to aid in the movement of product from manufacturer to consumer.

The Snickers ad did accomplish something though. It just might be the first Super Bowl ad in recent memory to reverse the process and halt sales versus increase them.

One can debate (and many are) whether or not the spot, itself, or the reaction to it is homophobic or whether it was just an innocent play on "manliness" but that's not the point. It's an ad that, for whatever reason, has turned many people off of the brand and planted a negative association. That's the worst thing that can happen to a brand and the road to recovery might take some time. Or, like so many important incidents that occur in this country, people will forget within a week and go back to their normal routines with nary a snicker.

UPDATE: One commenter brings up a very relevant point. Had this ad featured two women, we'd all be drooling over it and loving it. The double standard lives on.

Written by Steve Hall    Comments (53)     File: Brands, Commercials, Opinion, Strange, Super Bowl 2007, Worst     Feb- 6-07  
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Comments

Come on people get over it!! Just because two men kissed is not a reason to go ballistic over Snicker's!! With all of the problems in the world this should not even be a blip on the radar screen. I am sickened by how you the public are reacting to a very minor event!! It is time that the citizens of the U.S. grow up and take on a more worldly outlook on human sexuality.

Posted by: Todd on February 6, 2007 10:21 AM

I am just tired of the Agenda of others and thier imoralities and perversion to be pushed on us,I thought the snikers commerical was disgusting and I will never buy another Mars product again, My support will go somewhere else but it is my right to spend my money where I wish.Some organizations to their agenda will make it a joke by the hidden agenda is evident. I just dont like thier life styles pushed on me

Posted by: TimeOut on February 6, 2007 10:38 AM

Isn't too early to say this ad lowered Snicker's sales? The commercial has terrible taste and it's not funny at all, but we're jumping into conclusions.

Posted by: Anon on February 6, 2007 11:24 AM

I agree with Todd. It's just ridiculous that this is become such a big thing. Of course if it were two women then it would have been hailed as the best ad this year. Gotta love double standards. People will eventually realize that humans are sexual beings and that it is not unnatural for men to love men and women to love women. It has just been given a negative connotation since the expansion of religion. Talk about having an agenda! You may see this commercial as immoral and perverse but I didnít think anything of it.

Either way, I donít think they were promoting homosexuality or homophobia. I was questioning how pulling hair off your chest makes you manly. Iíll still buy a Snickers bar because I like them and this ad is not going to change that.

Posted by: stef on February 6, 2007 12:36 PM

Dude, that sucks. This was probably one of the better Super Bowl ads this year.

Posted by: Angela Natividad on February 6, 2007 02:14 PM

"Of course if it were two women then it would have been hailed as the best ad this year."


Damn, why didn't I think of that.

Posted by: Bob Parsons on February 6, 2007 02:19 PM

If you would have went to the website you would have seen alternate endings to the ad, each more homophobic than the last. One showed a redneck bashing the other over the head with a wrench, another showed the other guy slamming the hood of the car on the head of his 'friend'. I kissed a dude... must kill him! Another shows them drinking motor oil and anti-freeze... suicide? This is what is causing the outrage... and why they pulled their website.

http://americablog.blogspot.com/2007/
02/snickers-superbowl-web-site-promo
tes.html

Posted by: ken doll on February 6, 2007 02:22 PM

To counter the possible negative effect of the Super Bowl spot the candy maker may market a bite-sized version of the product called "Snipples" if they can reach a licensing agreement with Janet Jackson.

Posted by: Geoff Bush on February 6, 2007 02:40 PM

I consider myself to be an average, heterosexual male. I remember cringing at first during the commercial, but then laughing. I ended up highly amused, and in fact it's only one of the two Super Bowl XLI commercials I remember without having to think hard (the other being the Budweiser spot with the dog). I never thought there were any hidden meanings in the commercial. The net effect is that for the first time since the "I can't get no satisfaction" Snickers campaign I remembered the brand for longer than five seconds.

Posted by: Jozef on February 6, 2007 03:08 PM

If Snickers wants to drop a couple of million for an ad, they obviously want to make an impression... they did. However, I don't see why people get bent out of shape if most viewers just didn't care to see two ugly guys kissing. What does a wordly outlook, human sexuality and homophobia have to do with it? What if two girls were kissing and most viewers liked it...so what? I'm sure the heck not going to feel bad about it. Screw the "you're not worldly" judgements. You wouldn't find me judgding people who would be sickened if it was a man and woman kissing...or thinking they are heterophobic...or passing them off as limited thinkers. And Snickers knew that it sure wouldn't make nearly the same impression.

Posted by: Hodge on February 6, 2007 03:08 PM

"It just might be the first Super Bowl ad in recent memory to reverse the process and halt sales versus increase them."

I guess you've already forgotten the "Just for Feet" Superbowl spot that had White hunters in a Hummer chasing a black barefoot runner- capturing him and putting shoes on his feet.
The chain went under, the agency got sued.
See this excellent article:
http://www.salon.com/media/col/shal/1999/05/28/kenya/index.html

This is an example of why advertising isn't best handled by the "young guns"

Posted by: David Esrati on February 6, 2007 03:24 PM

>>Come on people get over it!! Just because two men kissed is not a reason to go ballistic over Snicker's!! With all of the problems in the world this should not even be a blip on the radar screen.

Todd - I think you're missing the point. The point is that "2 men kissed" and they then had to beat the shit out of each other so as to avoid "gayness". People aren't outraged by 2 men kissing, they're outraged that it's supporting that gay is a "bad thing".

My post on it:
http://www.shakewellbeforeuse.com/2007/02/homophobic_grab_a_snickers.php

Posted by: ariel on February 6, 2007 03:27 PM

It's relative though, no? Group of women watching Sunday laughed. Me and most of the other guys at the party cringed.

Innate fear of homosexuals? Can't speak for everyone, but for me, no. I just got turned off because well, I DON'T LIKE SEEING GUYS KISS. I don't need to spend 50 years on a shrink's couch figuring out the reasons why either.

I saw the 'Let's be a man to recover' thing that followed coming from a mile away. The scene with Steve Martin and John Candy in Plains Trains and Automobiles did it a lot better.

Posted by: makethelogobigger on February 6, 2007 04:26 PM

Hey... Guys... Dudes... Whatever.
You're all missing the point. It has nothing to do with homophobia, double standards, cringing, or whatever... It sucked. Plain and simple, in common with 90% of the other outrageously expensive pieces of shit on there at $2.6 million a pop (not counting production costs) It fucking sucked. Now the "Miller Cat Fight" gals wrestling in wet cement a few years ago... That was pure art. Standing by for the hate mail!!!
Cheers/George

Posted by: George Parker on February 6, 2007 04:34 PM

Sucky or not, you have to admit, George, that it's a somewhat irresponsible move for Snickers to imply that if you do something gay, you have to beat the shit out of each other to make up for it. That AND the fact that they took their website down - you have to see that someone must've gone "oh shit! bring the website down!" before they received any more complaints.

Is it stupid to take advertising this seriously? Perhaps, but I don't think this is something Snickers as a brand even wants to be caught up in.

Posted by: ariel on February 6, 2007 04:39 PM

I was really disappointed in the calibar of commercials this year during the Super Bowl. This commercial was one of the funnier ones. People who got offended should get over it - its only a TV commercial. I would have loved to have the money those 2 guys made for doing this commercia!!

Posted by: Pam on February 6, 2007 05:07 PM

Ariel is spot-on, although the comment from "TimeOut" seems to indicate that those who believe homosexuality is "immoral" are also opposed to the campaign. I guess the subtlety went over TimeOut's head...

Posted by: daveednyc on February 6, 2007 05:16 PM

Come on people, you take yourselves to seriously. All to stuff going on around you and you are up in arms about a commercial. Gays are outraged, straights are outraged. This is the last thing that needs this much energy spent on it. Get over it and move on to then much larger issues at hand.

Posted by: Jimbo on February 6, 2007 05:16 PM

It's funny to how so many people react so quickly. It's a commercial...I thought it was hilarious. Now they used two mechanics...who normally have their hands dirty and to most are manly men...so quit your wining people...I thought it was one of the funnier ones..

Would everyone been happier if it was two guys swimming in a pool and suddenly a snicker bar floats bye? or wait...that might upset people who like to shit in their own pants...

Where is our country going?

Posted by: Philip on February 6, 2007 05:18 PM

UPDATE: review from this gay sports group says "no harm, no foul", though: http://outsports.com/entertainment/2007/0205snickers.htm

Posted by: daveednyc on February 6, 2007 05:20 PM

The website was an abomination, however the first part of the commercial was original and funny. It should've just ended with them looking embarassed or awkward or something like that. One would think that with the kind of money these people make to create these things, someone could've come up with a funny non-offensive ending. It's not homophobic for two straight men to feel odd finding themselves in such a situation, but the "manly" part was. And the hair pulling was just stupid.

Posted by: Bill on February 6, 2007 05:38 PM

I've read these blogs and came to the conclusion that I am sick and tired of television promoting 'queerness'. Some people watch the sitcoms, full of this and should be happy with just that. Instead, here I am watching the Super Bowl and a candy bar has to advertise two men kissing each other. Man, those of you from the big cities, mostly the Northeast and Far West, I wish you would take your love of faggots and be silent. I mean Real Silent. Decent people don't want anything to do with you.

Posted by: Charles on February 6, 2007 06:07 PM

you would think that all these asshole watchdog groups would have something better to do than this okay if youre gay fine but stop whining about all the petty shit after all you may be gay but you are still a man right?

Posted by: steve on February 6, 2007 06:37 PM

"People who got offended should get over it - its only a TV commercial."

This comment kills me. It's not about being offended, it's about being disgusted. That gay groups 'signed off' or are ok with this, I could care less.

Philip had a better idea with the pool. Bill Murray picking up the candy bar in the Caddy Shack pool scene is funny. This wasn't.

Posted by: makethelogobigger on February 6, 2007 07:35 PM

I agree with most of the population, this is getting rediculous. People have way to much time on their hands, to even go there in their brains. What are people so insecure and want something to complain about? Geez!!!!!!!! GET A LIFE!!!!! People want rights and freedom, well don't let the government make rules for us to follow that are totally ridiculous. Think about it and don't point fingers and complain about something, and then there will be a rule to follow and then complain about it. Just leave it alone, GET OVER YOURSELVES!!!!!

Posted by: Tired on February 6, 2007 07:47 PM

Hey Tired...
Yeah... Fucking government... Fucking Bill Clinton. Fucking comunists.
Get some sleep.
Cheers/George

Posted by: George Parker on February 6, 2007 07:50 PM

These in your face Fagots and Lez are so paranoid that when someone gets in their face they panic and call it gay bashing and all that, these idiots are simply in a panic as they should be. keep on pushing the add and I hope that there will be more of the similar, would I stop buying Snickers? No!!! this will make me buy more from a company with a pair of BALLS to go up against all those Godless fagots and lesbians, that is.. IN YOUR FACE

Posted by: JARHEAD on February 6, 2007 08:06 PM

That was a funny ad. I thought it showed the men as commical idiots. Not homosexuals. Don't think they should pull the ad.

Posted by: suzanne warren on February 6, 2007 08:10 PM

Good idea to execute an integrated TV/on-line spot...but wrong creative.

I wonder what they are planning for bite size Snickers?

Not sure about you, but bring on the Kit Kats!

Posted by: Detroit Dan on February 6, 2007 08:11 PM

The commercial makes want to go and get a snickers! Might even get lucky and get a kiss, it is the month of LOVE. So folks, just smile and be happy!!!

Posted by: Tired on February 6, 2007 08:12 PM

That was a funny ad. I thought it showed the men as commical idiots. Not homosexuals. Don't think they should pull the ad.

Posted by: suzanne warren on February 6, 2007 08:13 PM

Ah, Suzanne, you bring up an excellent point. Even though I disagree with you about the quality of the ad. It sucked and it grossed me out a bit. Even though I, uh, had a Snickers bar today.

It shows, once again, that ad agencies simply have to treat men as idiots. That's because many of the people in these agencies have a two dimensional view of advertising. Women's breasts and stupid men.

Blue collar men in this case. Easy to pick on. A class of people that I would bet many who are responding to this post can't really relate to. That's part of the untold story. Not just homophobia.

To Charles, you need to loosen up. There's gay people in all 50 states...including the one you happen to be in.

Posted by: Jonathan Trenn on February 6, 2007 08:29 PM

And JARHEAD. Learn to spell. Also, who assigned you to determine who is close to God?

Posted by: Jonathan Trenn on February 6, 2007 08:51 PM

Snickers should run the campaign in the UK and Protestant northern Europe. Hands off the Catholic Mediterranean though: Reactions might be too similar to the comments above.

Posted by: Sophie on February 7, 2007 03:44 AM

Yes, Sophie, we Catholics are too unsophisticated for you.

It amazes me how arrogant some people in advertising are toward the 'general public'.

Posted by: Jonathan Trenn on February 7, 2007 08:18 AM

I think Charles and Jardhead just haven't come to grips with their own homosexuality. Don't worry guys...it will be okay.

Posted by: / on February 7, 2007 08:43 AM

No matter how gay groups try to justify the normalcy of homsexuality it should never be accepted as normal behavior. They made a big deal about the Janet Jackson breast incident at the superbowl. Is it not just as equally revolting that our young children should be subjected to this in the middle of the Superbowl. I object to both sides of the issue. Being christian there is no way I will ever be pro-gay, however i also look at the flipside of this and I see it as an attempt to desensitize the general masses by showing scenes such as this on TV.

Posted by: Ito9121 on February 7, 2007 10:07 AM

I think that this was an effective ad and I will, in turn, buy truck loads of snickers bars. The only thing Mars did wrong was to pull the ad. I would feel awkward if I ended up in that position and I'm sure I would do something wierd. What do these organizations want? For the guys to be ok with kissing each other and realize that they are really gay and then make out? It's ok to be straight.

Posted by: Peter Griffin on February 7, 2007 11:08 AM

I think that this was an effective ad and I will, in turn, buy truck loads of snickers bars. The only thing Mars did wrong was to pull the ad. I would feel awkward if I ended up in that position and I'm sure I would do something wierd. What do these organizations want? For the guys to be ok with kissing each other and realize that they are really gay and then make out? It's ok to be straight.

Posted by: Peter Griffin on February 7, 2007 11:13 AM

I thought the second half of the ad, when the two guys tried to act macho, was brain-dead stupid. First half was a hoot, however. They should have ended it with the guys admitting their sexual attraction for one another. Especially two un-metrosexual auto mechanic types.

If there's any fall-out from bigots, homophobes and other closet cases, I doubt it'll affect sales much. I've already forgotten which brand they were advertising.

Posted by: Auto on February 7, 2007 12:36 PM

Steve
Could you stop all these brain dead people doing multiple posts... Excuding me, of course!
Cheers/George

Posted by: George Parker on February 7, 2007 02:17 PM

Am I missing the point? I think it makes fun of heterosexual men. As for Steve Hall: ARE YOU OUTTA YOUR MIND? Do you really think that middle-America gives a rat's ass enough about an offended fringe group that they would stop buying Snickers? And what checkout person on what planet is going to look at you funny for buying one? Give me a break, dude. The best thing that could have happend is that everyone just shut up about it and it would have just faded away. It just wasn't that memorable.

Anyway, I really don't have time for this, I'm headed out to buy a CASE of Snickers. My FAVORITE candy bar!

Posted by: BRYMAN on February 7, 2007 03:18 PM

I swear, more than half of you creative folks (who are probably gay) and are insulted by this commercial.........are idiots. Please. First of all, in this commercial, the two guys are hetersoxuals, meaning, they will never be turned on by people of the same sex. The reason they were disgusted by their actions was because they accidentanly did somthing they normally wouldnt do.

What if a man and woman inadvertenttly kissed each other and were disgusted by their actions. Would the Heterosexual Aliiance of Normalcy freak out?

NO! Get a life you hyper-sensitive losers. Stop spending your time trying to pick a fight with a pathetic cause..

Posted by: roglockE on February 7, 2007 10:38 PM

Sale won't slip, let's use this campaign.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/52193924@N00/

Posted by: Cliff on February 9, 2007 03:27 PM

Steve...
I just pulled the plug on the Roehm Clock... It's over... What say we do the same thing on this Snicker shit. Also, because some of these lame fuckers need to post everything twenty fucking times, your bandwidth allocation is going down the tubes. Next up... "The Kleenex, Snot for Katrina Foundation"... Now, that's got legs.
Cheers/George

Posted by: George Parker on February 9, 2007 04:08 PM

Let's give em a new camp to run:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/52193924@N00/

Posted by: Cliff on February 9, 2007 06:00 PM

Cliff... Everyone...
It's over... OK... We are totally fucking Snickered out.. Join me in kicking the shit out of Kleenex... OK.
Cheers/George

Posted by: George Parker on February 9, 2007 06:03 PM

Hear that everyone? George has decided we're all fucking Snickered out. George is the boss. We should do what he says.

Posted by: Jonathan Trenn on February 9, 2007 06:07 PM

Jonathan... Good man... Went to your site, I shall check it regularly. Liked the bit about wankers who overdo the flash on their web sites. Reminds me of the IBM spot a few years ago, when someone asks the designer why he set the logo on fire... "Because I can!" he answered. Just about sums up the mind of these bozos.
Cheers/George

Posted by: George Parker on February 9, 2007 06:40 PM

George, the reason there are so many multiple posts is that the system is so damn slow to respond after the author clicks post/send.

Why doesn't management just delete the 2nd and 3rd and 4th posts?

Posted by: Auto on February 10, 2007 02:34 PM

Auto
Better yet, why doesn't Steve delete every comment, except yours and mine? I could live with that.
Cheers/George

Posted by: George Parker on February 10, 2007 02:41 PM

I just called my wife and asked her to buy a case of snickers bars. I will give most of them away because of health reasons but I want to do my part to counter act the people who are compaining over nothing

Posted by: Bob Mcalear on February 12, 2007 12:16 PM

If you want to know more about the Mars family, the people behind Snickers, diabetes, amd childhood obesity in the USA, as well as slave labor in thrid world countires, you should read this pair of books. I know these people personally, and they're monsters. These are the books they DON'T want you to see...The Emperors of Chocolate: Inside the Secret World of Hershey and Mars, by JoŽl Glenn AND Crisis in Candyland: Melting The Chocolate Shell of the Mars Family Empire by Jan Pottker http://www.epinions.com/content_68791930500

Posted by: Blake on February 13, 2007 03:53 PM

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