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Fifty Shades of Grey – I Wish I Wrote That #2

Valentine’s Day is upon us, this year bringing with it the highly anticipated Fifty Shades of Grey movie. Like you couldn’t have guessed from the explosion in S&M sex-related advertising that has suddenly appeared, fuelled by lazy marketers and their “me too” approach.

Ad for Duck Tape - 1 Shade of Grey, not 50 Shades of Grey

A clever rebuttal of the 50 Shades of Grey hysteria from Duck Tape

Kind of like a porny attempt at newsjacking.

So in the midst of all the cable-tie and rope related nonsense, this ad for Duck Tape stands out.

For those unimpressed by the Fifty Shades of Grey hysteria, the underlying sarcasm of this ad is a welcome relief. It also proves that a well-executed play on words can work wonderfully.

The ambiguity of the ad (what are the other 49 uses for Duck Tape?) is another stroke of genius. It encourages the reader to use their imagination, to try and come up with their own mental list.

Which means that the impression left by the ad is far greater because the reader spends a lot longer thinking about the implications.

And yes, if you really try, you can still shoehorn a bondage-inspired subtext into the ad.

I salute you Mr/Mrs/Ms One Shade of Grey Copywriter, consider me jealous.

Enjoyed this article? Check out I Wish I Wrote That #1.

As always, any trademarks or other protected material referenced in this post remains the property of the original owner.

Written by Ben Lloyd


Ben Lloyd has worked in the IT industry since 1996, covering a number of roles from helpdesk support to network management and everything in between. Tech Write is built on this experience, offering outstanding technical copywriting services to agencies and clients across the world.

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