PETER YORK ON ADS; No 120: CRAFTMATIC

Click to follow
ARE YOU sitting comfortably? Lying comfortably? Bathing comfortably? Climbing the stairs comfortably? If not, a raft of electrically powered devices awaits. You can phone free for information on the Balsan Hydrotherapy unit; it could turn your ordinary bath into a massage centre for tired aching limbs. The Stannah Stair Lift could transform that terrible ascent; it even goes round corners.

And the Craftmatic electrically adjustable bed can restore restful sleep even better than Night Nurse. It's quite a thing, the Craftmatic; it can assume the most extraordinary shapes at the touch of a button. And, like all the other electronic help for the mature customer, it's advertised on TV now, rather than on a quarter page in Saga magazine. With an ageing population, some of them quite well off, this sector is booming away.

The Craftmatic ad looks as if it was made in America - and some while ago too. It's a straight product-demonstration-plus-call-free-for-more- information formula with not a shred of self-conscious creativity or attitude - it looks just like a direct-sell magazine ad transferred to TV. We see a range of middle-aged couples - one of them black - and singles in blissful comfort on their Craftmatics in nice klutzy bedrooms (of course, none of them is seriously old).

By contrast we have another couple tossing and turning on their horrible old bed, piling it high with cushions to no effect. But with the Craftmatic you can raise and support waist and shoulders by magic and, with the more expensive versions, you can even have heat and massage without moving an inch.

Advertising for the older person comes from another universe from the lager, mobile phone and car ads, one where unambiguous product benefits, re-assuring imagery and clear follow-through count for more than creative tension any day. There's more to come from the Parker-Knoll set.

! Video supplied by Tellex Commercials.

Comments