Sorry, but an ad like this:
Does not say Southwest Airlines. And, I'm far from alone. (It actually says something like, "We're American Airlines in 2009, pretending that our market share isn't about to go into the toilet and that we're about to file Chapter 11.)
Herb Kelleher's probably doing a slow burn on his Harley.
You ought to fire TBWA and go back to GSD&M.
The iconoclasm that used to be part of Southwest's "branding" is gone, simply gone.
Of course, TBWA will probably spin this as a "success" because everybody and his dog is talking about how much your ads suck.
Whoever signed off on that ... Chief Information Officer Randy Sloan? Vice President Linda B. Rutherford? ... needs an injection of Southwest DNA.
Or, if this is ultimately Gary Kelly's idea, to somehow make Southwest more "respectable," maybe HE needs an injection.
Bags may fly free, but bad commercials sink like a sack of hammers.
The basic "your own path" idea is good. THAT "backbone" does say Southwest. But, the conceptualization, the visualization, the attempt at realization? That says anything BUT Southwest.
Rather than "generic basketball" player, why not Dennis Rodman? Or if that's too much, Charles Barkley?
The actors playing Southwest employees? NOTHING like you've had in the past, on the "bags fly free" series, above all. Paint drying on walls would be more exciting.
Per my "American Airlines" crack above, this commercial screams complacency. Settling. Traditionalism. Three words that, until now, were never in the Southwest playbook.
And, yeah, I never thought I'd be putting Southwest and the Dipshit Double A on a level playing field for anything.