I’ve been thinking a lot about “Jake… from State Farm”

No joke, every single time I meet someone named Jake, it takes all of my strength to not say, “Jake… from State Farm?” Every. Single. Time. What this proves is two things:

  1. I had no idea how many people I’d meet with the name Jake
  2. The State Farm ads are funny and memorable

The campaign started with this one…

It’s since been updated to include a new Jake, but the original Jake still peaks out from the next cubicle in the new commercial. These ads are effective for two reasons:

  1. They’re funny
  2. They’re consistent

Another good example of consistency are the commercials from Progressive featuring Flo and Jamie. They’re funny and don’t stray from what’s working, which is the smily and funny Flo and the comedic enigma that is Jamie. Information about Progressive is weaved in nicely as a secondary part of the ads.

An example of ads I don’t understand comes from KFC. Whoever came up with the bizarre idea to have a different “Colonel Sanders” represent KFC over the course of various ads probably wasn’t thinking how confusing it would appear to consumers. Lots of comedians, actors, and even the beloved Reba McEntire portrayed Mr. Sanders over the years and I still don’t exactly understand why. These ads (if you haven’t seen them I’ll include one below) need explanation and in my experience it’s like having to explain a joke. If you have to explain it, it’s not funny. Here’s one of the ads with Jim Gaffigan as Colonel Sanders…

So back to the ads we understand, like these from GEICO, it’s important to be consistent and in the case of State Farm, be funny like “Jake… from State Farm.” I hope they can keep playing off the original ad. Maybe they can even bring the wifey back because she was great with her suspicion and her perfect use of air quotes, of course. I’d love to see her featured in a follow up ad in some circumstance where the husband is caught talking to an agent again. Good stuff!

Thanks for stopping by!

-Out of the Wilderness

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