FedEx is spending lots of money on online advertising hammering away at an proposed regulatory change that would benefit UPS. Using the parlance of our times, they are calling it the “Brown Bailout” – since the term “bailout” has such high negative connotations.
I’ve criticized this campaign before for tactical flaws – many of which have been corrected in the year since it launched. And the people in charge of the campaign messages have always done a good job of explaining a complex issue completely in a simple – and funny – way with great videos.
But here’s the rub: those videos, while once effective, are outdated. Those UPS whiteboard commercials are two or three years old, and the company has moved to an ad campaign which highlights “logistics.” If FedEx’s government affairs division wanted to really hammer UPS, the new ads are quite mockable.
By recycling a year-old campaign, FedEx is taking a shortcut. It would be like bringing a knife to a gun fight – but luckily for them, UPS is bringing a whiffle bat. In the year and a half since FedEx has been running the Brown Bailout campaign, the best UPS could muster is this visually thrilling online press kit that could serve as that antidote to caffeine scientists have been searching for: