Angel Soft released an advertisement celebrating Father’s Day. However, the toilet paper company decided to add a twist. No, it was some lame pun about fathers be messy. Indeed, the ad is not about fathers at all:
I will let a representative of Angel Soft explain the thought process behind this ad:
Anna Umphress, Director of Communications and Public Affairs who handles media relations for Angel Soft told me that this video was “just one execution in a larger overall campaign called ‘Be Soft. Be Strong.’ that the Angel Soft brand is currently rolling out.” In relation to the series, there are video ads planned for back to school, the holidays, Valentine’s Day “and now, based on feedback to this video, something to think about for May 2016.” This is not part of a Father’s Day series, rather a video-per-holiday series.
That is interesting. Mother’s Day is a holiday. It happened last month, yet Angel Soft did not release a video celebrating it. They did not appear to mention it at all.
“The goal of the ‘Be Soft. Be Strong.’ campaign is to create an emotional connection with our consumers – in this case, by letting the children of single moms openly express what their moms mean to them and appreciate the sometimes challenging role they played during their childhood,” Umphress wrote. “While the timing may seem unconventional, we saw this video as a way to do something different and recognize single moms in a very unique way.”
As opposed to recognizing the less conventional single dads. Our society rarely pays attention to fathers. We do not thank them for their sacrifices, their love, or their support. The difference between the way we treat Mother’s Day and Father’s Day is evidence of this. Angel Soft could have used this to their advantage by being one of the few companies to acknowledge fathers beyond the Father’s Day sales.
Instead, the company used the day to focus on women.
Why would anyone do this? What purpose does this serve?
In response to the claims that the ad enforces gender stereotypes by saying single mothers “take on both roles,” Umphress said: “Angel Soft celebrates families in all shapes and sizes. We support anyone who plays a parenting role in whatever form that might be: moms, dads, grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc. – for everything they do to balance all that life throws at them, and how they do it – by being both soft and strong, not just one or the other.”
That would have been fine if there were other ads featuring grandparents, aunts, uncles, and fathers. There were not. There is only this one ad featuring single mothers.
This is so wrong-headed that it is baffling no one at the ad agency or Angel Soft thought this would play badly with most people. Indeed, the only people who seem to like the ad are so-called social justice warriors. Everyone else seems to find the ad at best distasteful marketing ploy.
In light of that, here is a much better ad about fathers: