Comet – we live electricals

SimonGeneral5 Comments

Working in marketing and PR it’s difficult to watch TV ads from a consumer point of view – I always find myself analysing the thinking behind the ad and the quality of the execution.

The one that is really troubling me at the moment is for the UK electrical retailer Comet. Through Saatchi and Saatchi they’ve managed to come up with this strapline:

Comet – we live electricals

For me this fails dismally on a number of levels. For one it’s symbolic of a really old school corporate way of thinking – we’re telling you about us because what we’re telling you about us is important (we think).

The pedant in me is also troubled by electricals. Is that really a noun? The last time I looked it was an adjective – electrical goods maybe, but electricals? C’mon…

But the killer reason why this doesn’t work for me is that it fails to offer the potential customer a benefit. One of the things that was drummed into me early in my career as a lowly product manager in Boots, was the features and benefits.

Features are specific characteristics of something. But benefits are the good things those features give to customers. And customers buy benefits, not features.

So what’s the benefit here then? You should shop with us because we are passionately into what we do? Well yes I sure Comet is passionate about electricals (sic), and in today’s retail climate you’d struggle to find a big retailer who isn’t similarly passionate about what they sell.

Straplines can be a good way to expand on a business name or campaign, and can reinforce brand values well. But only if they’re done well, and for me Comet’s is the worst one I’ve seen in a while.

5 Comments on “Comet – we live electricals”

  1. Having worked at Comet for several years, I can only imagine the idea to imply that the staff know what they are talking about (by “living” they therefore know whats good in terms of features/benefits).

    One of the strongest criticisms of Currys and other stores is their lack of knowledge and disregard for what the consumer wants. I think its an attempt to get away from that image.

    Its better than the previous (and awful awful) “We’re Pos+tive we can Help” ads; but not as fondly remembered as the “You Know Where to Come(t)” ads.

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  3. Lets just hope Comet get what they deserve along with Toshiba. Comet doesn’t give a damn about its customers and told it customer after the recent announcement by Toshiba about ending the HD-DVD format that they will not reimburse customers, its not their fault and basically they “dont care anyway”.

    Comet has a terrible reputation when it comes to customer service, quite possible the worst.

  4. You say comet has a terrible reputation for its customer service, but when I went to the shop to browse for a computer, twice the help I got has been brilliant!

    There were several of comet’s main rivals such as PC World, Currys and Dixons situated extremely close to it so I went into both to see which prices were better. In PC World, the help I recieved was extremely poor, and in Currys and Dixons I got no help. In Comet, on the other hand, not only did I recieve a large amount of help, and friendly customer advice, they also offered the best deals.

    I have nothing bad to say about Comet.

  5. I have had 2 faulty washing machines off Comet in a month. They wont give me a better or different model unless i pay the difference!!
    Which i cant afford. They call this Customer Servive??
    I’m at my wits end…

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