Worst. Ad. Ever.

Broken homes, death, and estranged loved ones – who knew a feel-good initiative like Singapore’s “National Family Week” would actually use Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt to persuade people to spend more time with their families. Where are the smiling grandparents? Happy children? Joyful family dinner scenes? All replaced with a graveyard.

This could be the worst ad ever created. I know that’s an extreme statement, but seriously…

National Family Week should re-think about how they want to brand their image. Apparently they want to be associated with cemeteries and death.

Look at this garbage – run in today’s Straits Times:


The small text at the bottom reads:
“Before you know it. Your children have outgrown you. Your spouse stopped talking to you.
Your parents and grandparents…
Life is unpredictable. You never know what tomorrow brings.
Make time for your family. Today.
Visit www.nationalfamilyweek.com.sg

“You never know what tomorrow brings” – I know what tomorrow brings – another chain of morons that create trash.

Way to destroy your brand, “National Family Week.” Make me scared that my family will drop dead at any second.


13 responses to this post.

  1. Drop the agency and the person who approve it. Poor taste. What is this person thinking?

    Who knows? Next year, they might re-use the image for an AIDS campaign.


  2. Posted by L on June 21, 2007 at 12:22 am

    Most people only find the discipline to take action when they see that things could possibly screw up. Oh well…


  3. Posted by BJ on June 21, 2007 at 1:25 am

    We have created a problem with the family unit without the proper education in school. The valuable Confucius teaching is not taught and emphasised in school, thus creating a situation whereby family cohesiveness is not the result. Now they are trying to scare people to value the family relationship. The real problem is not the parents attitude towards the family but the children who grew up in this unguided environment that leads to the weak family relationship. They should target the young rather than the old parents who are powerless to bring about a good and cohesive family environment. Those people responsible to bring about good family relationship are only paying lip service and not looking at the root cause of the problem which is poor education of the young.


  4. I thought it was for the anti-smoking campaign, little did I know…


  5. […] an omen that the Digital Terrorist will be the Highlander – for there can only be one! (Update: This was what I was refering […]


  6. I would love to know which ad agency thought this wonder up.


  7. Posted by risi on June 21, 2007 at 9:23 pm

    say “NO!” to drugs.


  8. Posted by LJ on June 22, 2007 at 12:24 pm

    You mean you would prefer the motherhood stuff of happy families together, eating together etc? Thought Singaporeans are tired of motherhood stuff. At least this one got people talking.


  9. Posted by Felix on June 22, 2007 at 9:42 pm

    I actually think this ad is not bad lor. I mean, one reason I don’t spend much time with family but rather just work is because it’s so stable it’s like they are always there. But it’s times when I remember that my parents will pass away, that makes me treasure my time with them. So I don’t think it is so poor taste actually, it is relevant to my life lor.


  10. Posted by Chhavi on June 23, 2007 at 3:18 pm

    I think the ad is brilliant and so true. Why do you want to see just the happy side of life, why are we so reluctant to acknowledge the bitter truth.
    You are talking about portraying happy families, moms cuddling their children with grandmms and granddads…but what you forget is real life is not all that rosy….sometimes we are not so expressive and sometimes we have grudges against our parents and vice versa…but that doesnt mean theres no love..I for example have a love and hate relationship with my mom…my parents never were so expressive as to cuddle me and pamper me..pple like me will never be turned on by a rosy ad..it would just make them feel “wow wish my family was like that” instead what they need to realise is all families are different and family life is not all about being all nice nice to one another…I had a fren whoz mom always complained about him not spending enough time with him…he was always shrugging her off…he went to US to study…and aunty died of heart attack..and all he keeps telling me is..wish I had spent more time with her…


  11. Posted by Felix on June 24, 2007 at 2:51 pm

    Personally, the “happy families” portrayal (ie. two happy parents, two sets of happy grandparents, plus happy grandchildren” modes to me looks really fake and gross. Some years ago they ran some ads like that on TV which made me really uneasy because the feel is like they were “acting” and I know many families not like that.

    So, I prefer this ad to too idealistic stuff. “Perfect” families seldom exist. Families with supportive members do, no matter how “dysfunctional” they might seem to outsiders.

    eg. A widowed grandma who steps in to take care of son’s divorced baby children,

    eg. the single mother struggling to take care of her teenage children with the help of her siblings and a supportive bf who could become the step husband.

    eg. a gay life partner who selflessly helps his partner financially to maintain mounting bills of a mother with chronic organ failures. (Contrast with this shit about “gays = antifamilies = promiscuity = Aids” which does not apply to all gay people.)

    I am not joking. Sometimes what is seen on TV, may just be out of touch with ground reality. So when they do try in the right direction to run ads like this, I’d rather give credit where it’s due. A supportive family unit has many variations.


  12. Posted by Singaporean in Australia on June 25, 2007 at 8:59 am

    Although the presentation is quite morbid, it does take a reality check on the previous Disney-esque campaigns. Maybe in the future the emphasis should be on the individual family unit, however unique they may be instead of the picture perfect family of 3 generations living together.


  13. Classic white terror…
    Trying to scare us little children to do anything they want.


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