Since “Life’s Short”, are all ads fair game?

Posted on May 11th, 2007 by

By now, we have all heard about the infamous Chicago divorce billboard.  If you haven’t, you can see it here.  Basically, it shows a voluptuous woman’s torso in black lingerie on one side and a tan, male torso with washboard abs on the other.  In the middle is the tag line “Life’s Short. Get a Divorce.”

The purpose of advertising is to elicit a response and the national controversy that this advertisement stirred up did just that.  Was this a genius ad?  Or does it push the limits too far and become offensive?

What do you think?

2 Responses to Since “Life’s Short”, are all ads fair game?

  1. Demica says:

    In Advertising – having a shock value can be more important than being politically correct (or fair). Advertising’s sole purpose is to make you remember the product, person, or ideas when you decide buy or do your research. Although the divorce ad is racy it gets the simple point across – look at me. It is truly a great example of advertising – a simple message, dramatic visuals, and it is memorable. Moving on from the theory of advertising…from a legal profession standpoint consider this: Every lawyer is looking for the right type of clientele. Maybe this law firm will cater to clients with a dark sense of humor (we all have it in us even if we don’t admit to it). Bottom line – there are more tacky lawyer ads out there that make false promises and misleading guarantees. “Life is short” is a true fact – the law firm just decided to interpret it in a way that got some attention. As it is true to life it is the same for advertising: To each his (or her) own!

  2. While many law firms could do with a far more imaginative approach to their print/billboard advertising and marketing in general there is a limit. It applies to other professions as well but when you’re advertising in an area like family law I think a bit of a sense of humour is good, provided a reasonable level of sensitivity is maintained.

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