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McDonald’s Canada addressed criticism directly in a high profile campaign last year that purported to offer frank answers to consumers’ questions about its food. (McDonald’s Canada)
McDonald’s Canada addressed criticism directly in a high profile campaign last year that purported to offer frank answers to consumers’ questions about its food. (McDonald’s Canada)

New Year’s resolutions for advertisers Add to ...

Just a few days into 2014 there are likely more than a few gym memberships already gathering dust across the country. Now that we’ve made our promises for new year’s betterment, what better time to turn our attention to others?

We asked readers for their suggestions on the resolutions that advertisers should make for themselves.

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Some chose to direct their ire to individual ads: one reader shamed furniture retailer The Brick for the shouting style of its commercials.

The Nissan Canada commercials using the Bruno Mars song “Locked Out of Heaven,” for example, has been in heavy rotation for some time and has begun to wear on at least one viewer, who responded via Twitter .

Another reader, Nick Mosgrove singled out a new commercial for Expedia Canada, showing a man’s fear of winter with grating Hitchcock-style violins in a bid to advertise the travel website’s getaways.

Wal-Mart Canada’s recent commercials, which categorized moms into different types (such as the “always prepared mom” or the “emotional mom”) struck  Lori Ridgeway as insulting to women’s intelligence.

And Rebecca Zimmer criticized McDonald’s for the fact that its burgers look different in commercials than they do in real life. That’s a criticism that McDonald’s Canada addressed directly in a high profile campaign last year that purported to offer frank answers to consumers’ questions about its food. The campaign won awards in Cannes, and the video showing why burgers in ads look different has attracted more than nine million views online. But the comment shows McDonald’s still has more work to do to win some consumers’ trust.

Here are some of the other thoughts that readers shared for advertisers looking to do a little self improvement in 2014:

“Most ads are mindless and irritating these days, with ridiculous characterizations and simply silly writing that is an insult to any half-intelligent person. It seems a race to be the most senseless advertising message. [The best ads] are in a class of their own and are memorable as well as appealing to our emotional intelligence.” Ron Gulka

“Resolve to develop and market products that will sell themselves.” William Johnson

“Stop using sexuality to sell to teens.” Elaine Barnes

“The radio ads that include honking/sirens need to be stopped. It's startling and dangerous as many [people] drive [with the] radio.” Britt (via Twitter)

“Sexism, weight loss ads, treating [people] like we are idiots. I love the ads where businesses move towards donating [money] rather than spend millions ... on an ad that won't make me buy your product anyway. I choose [with] social conscience.” Marnie (via Twitter)

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