Local Advertising Fail – The Ugly Steak Dinner

Local Advertising Fail – The Ugly Steak Dinner

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Local Advertising Fail - The Ugly Steak Dinner

Local Advertising Fail - The Ugly Steak Dinner
Food can be a tricky thing to photograph, as the ugly steak dinner in this 300×50 local advertising fail illustrates.

Was this a print ad from a Hotel Restaurant Guide?

This online display ad looks like it was translated from one of those restaurant ads usually found in hotel room restaurant guides.

Animated, but why?

This ad was animated, but only a small window of text changes with each frame. Unnecessarily, I might add.

Frame 1
Local Advertising Fail - The Ugly Steak Dinner - Frame 1
Frame 2
Local Advertising Fail - The Ugly Steak Dinner - Frame 2
Frame 3
Local Advertising Fail - The Ugly Steak Dinner - Frame 3

But why is this thing even animated?

Sure, animation can help grab attention, but in this case it’s because they wanted to cram even more text into the ad.

How to fix it: It’s okay to use animation, but not in this ad. Since there are already so many things going on I’d recommend no animation at all.

The Ugly Steak Dinner

As mentioned previously, food can be very difficult to photograph correctly.

In this case, the steak dinner looks like a lump of something brown, next to something brown and white, with a little bit of green stuff served on top of a dirty plate.

Maybe this photo looks better in print, but I somehow doubt that.

How to fix it: Hire a professional photographer with experience – and the right equipment – for photographing food. It’s worth it.

There’s too much text – hell, there’s too much everything

The animation shown above is just an excuse to cram in more info about:

  1. Corporate lunches
  2. A happy hour
  3. Valet parking
  4. A piano bar
  5. And their wine selection

And that’s just the animated part of the ad. The rest of the ad has:

  1. The headline
  2. The steak dinner on a dirty plate
  3. The tagline
  4. A flame icon that isn’t immediately recognized as a flame.
  5. Their logo with some sort of glowing light behind it.
  6. A logo for some “Best Of” type of local award.
  7. The address
  8. The phone number
  9. And reminder to call for reservations.

How to fix it: Reduce the components. This ad started off with a half-decent headline that should have been much bigger/more prominent.

I might have rewritten that as “No Skinny Steaks!” or “No Skinny Steaks Here!”

Any images should back up that claim. Maybe a steak so large that it is falling off of the plate.

The rest of the ad should only be about the name of the place and how to call them. Maybe a location if it can be short and easy to read.

Which brings me to…

Poor font choices

The tagline is written in some sort of script that makes the word “Perfection” look like “PerfLection.”

The logo also uses a script-y font, while the rest of the fonts seem to be tall and super-skinny in an effort to cram as much text into it as possible.

The end result is that people can’t, and likely won’t, stop to read it all.

How to fix it: If the elements listed above are reduced to a larger headline, the logo, a picture of a meal you’d actually want to eat, and the phone number and address, then the fonts could be made much larger and clearer.

Avoid script-y fonts at all costs.

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It doesn’t have to be a strictly local advertising fail – any sort of advertising or marketing fail will be considered.

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