Being under 21 sucks in a lot of ways… There is of course the obvious disadvantage, but there is so much more. From personal experience, I can legally do a lot of things… I just can not afford to do most of them. As the old saying goes, “Youth is wasted on the young.” Turns out once you can afford to go out and do the really fun stuff… you are too “old” according to society’s rules. Even worse, a lot of things like groceries or movie tickets are actually cheaper! I totally disagree with society’s “law of the young”, but that is not the issue for today’s post. Oh no, I would like to use my time today to introduce an advertisement idea I have been thinking about for some time now.
One of American society’s most unique and identifiable characteristics is our firm belief that products should be restricted by age. Yes other cultures “restrict” products like alcohol and tobacco officially by age, but the rules are generally more a recommendation than a firm law. As a result, we spend huge amounts of time and money trying to stop underage consumption of goods. In other words, you will not see a “We Card” sign in a German Biergarten. In fact, they think it is delightfully funny and prude. Even so, we all know we are unique in this way and to be honest, I think we take pride in it. More to the point, most of us live for the day we turn 21. There is nothing like the joy of being able to legally do something so “Verbotten”, even if it pretty much tends to instantly make us fatter, dumber, and a whole lot poorer. At the same time, I have also noticed people feel sad when bouncers or check out clerks stop carding them. Something about passing that sign that says “We ID under 30” without being checked triggers the “Oh no… I’m old” fear.
Well fear not post 21 year olds of America! I want to appeal to that wonderful sense of joy we get when we are carded for the first time and I know just how to do it. And this time, you actually save money! The one problem… you need to be 55 or older to enjoy it. Yes, I want to establish carding 55 year olds for their AARP discount. Of course you also need the AARP card, but then again, I have plenty of cards that say I’m 22. I still get asked for my license just to prove it.
Television Spec AD
This ad uses TV as a media base and starts off showing a check-out line and a bunch of people waiting in line.
Cashier: Next please
(55ish man steps to the counter and proceeds to buy a few things. The final item is a bottle of wine)
Cashier: Sir, I’m going to need to see some ID. (The man looks nervous and fumbles around his wallet to find it. He hands it to the cashier)
55yearold: Here you go son. (Said in an old man voice)
(The Cashier looks suspicious. Calls his manager who arrives momentarily. The manager brings out an ultraviolent light and checks the ID. The shot switches to showing an obviously fake ID and a bold birthdate. The manager looks up displeased shaking his head.)
55year old: (looks frustrated, takes the bottle, and brings out his credit card)
Narrator: Being 55 doesn’t mean you can’t have fun, it just means you don’t have to pay as much.
(Screen transitions to black screen showing AARP logo and joining information)
Print Spec Ad
Magazine and other forms of print ads can also be used in this campaign. Of course an appropriate publication would be used, but that is common knowledge.
I would love to use a photo showing someone in their late 40s trying to look older while a clerk is checking their id. The perspective will be behind and above the clerk. I want the audience to see what the clerk is seeing, but at the same time, I also want to show a clear view of the customer. A line of people can be seen waiting. None are very happy. The clerk is pointing to a sign that says “We ID…Under 55… no discount”
Ultimately I want to produce an ad campaign that pokes fun of our age restrictions, but at the same time reminds 55 year olds of that first time of being IDed. As humans, we love milestones and look forward to most… even if it is officially becoming eligible for AARP. In fact, after seeing the massive number of 60+ year old recent retires enjoying themselves (and whipping out $20 bills like they were nothing) on River street, Savannah, Georgia last weekend, I am convinced 55+ year olds are very much still ready to go out and have fun. I plan to be! The fact they can afford to do so tells me they are probably fairly successful and have been thrifty throughout their working careers. It is probably the same reason I see recent retires riding five to ten thousand dollar professional grade road bikes while loafing around at 12-15 miles per hour. The old adage really is true… “Youth is wasted on the young”