Originally published in 2009.
Oh, the drama over a nun and her gelato! For the second time, Antonio Fedirici Gelato Italiano pushes the limits of tasteful advertising. The first involved a possible tormented kiss between a priest and a nun. With Antonio Fedirici Gelato Italiano’s newest ad touching on the aspects of the Immaculate Conception, the company instigates the age-old controversial question, “What makes a great ad?” Judging ads is no easy task. Millions of social media, marketing, and creative professionals have their own perspectives on what makes advertising great, but it filters down to three agreed upon points:
Is Antonio Fedirici Gelato Italiano’s newest ad relevant to branding the gelato and generating sales?The ad touches on the aspect of Immaculate Conception, which is sacred to Catholicism. The company positions its yummy gelato as purely “conceived” and “unadulterated.” These descriptors are parallel themes between their gelato and the Immaculate Conception theory.
Is the ad original? As far as ads for gelato or ice cream are concern, the ad is extremely unique! Tying in religion to create an ad for gelato is very original.
Is the ad impactful? Does one even need to ask? There is enough controversy with the ad that it will be memorialized in the minds of all marketers and consumers. Crafting the ad campaign around the Immaculate Conception has triggered a massive response from consumers, and met the requirements for a great ad.
I believe that there is more than just the three known intersections for determining what is considered a great ad. Now what is not in this three-step analysis is the question, “Was it done tastefully?” This depends on the consumers of the ad. (The Advertising Standards Authority in the UK banned the ad, because a population of consumers is offended by the religious tone.)
As a social media marketing professional and a gelato lover, I found the campaign to be ho-hum. Tying in religion to gelato is still a little far stretch from relevance, but it does meet the three mainstream concepts. If you believe that the three criteria are enough that’s perfect. More or less the aim for the campaign was to generate controversy. But as a gelato lover, maybe they should try a “gelato is the cream of my life” campaign instead. I can imagine the campaign to be much more tasty.