Thursday, September 20, 2012

Is Folksy Always the Right Touch for Hoosiers?

John Gregg
I'm probably going to make some people mad here, but I always have to say what's on my mind.  I think a course correction is needed in the John Gregg for Governor ad campaign.

The latest ad by the Democratic nominee for Governor features John standing with an umbrella talking about Mike Pence wanting to spend the state's Rainy Day Fund.  At the end of the ad, it's revealed that it's John's two sons on the roof with a hose "raining" down on Dad.  It's another folksy ad that has John at his "two first names runnnin' for Governor" best.

I get that Gregg is having fun, and I salute him for that.  It's important to enjoy the campaign.  While Gregg is smiling and having a good time, Pence is advancing the political football down the field three and four yards at a time with a solid and professional ad strategy.

In his latest spot, just like many of his others, is well-produced showing a workman-like Pence talking in a variety of settings to a variety of Hoosiers showing diversity talking about his plan for Indiana.  The ad, to me, works very well on a number of levels.  Despite my personal feeling about Pence's views and readiness to be Governor, I have to hand it to him and his campaign.  Pence definitely looks and sounds the job.

Pence's ads are a stark contrast to the Gregg ones which are easy to like, but they are starting to wear thin.  For those of us that don't want to see four years of Mike Pence (before he runs for President), I am quite concerned and alarmed.  I don't know what kind of shot John has at this thing, but I don't know that he's doing himself a lot of favors with these spots.

I was on his side after the "Hobo" and "Clip & Curl" ads, but I'm starting to wonder with these last two.  I think "Two Kinds" was a good spot, but there are lots of ways that point could have been made.  This latest spot comes off as cute but borderline silly, and there's important information in the spots.

It is nice to smile at a political ad, and that may be what the Gregg campaign is going for.  It's a non-traditional approach.  Gregg still hasn't provided much of a reason to select him over Pence in the spots only reasons why someone shouldn't vote for Pence.  I think he's going to have to get a sharper edge at some point as well as find a way to get his own resume out to the people.  We still haven't seen a bio ad from Gregg, and that may be necessary.  We still haven't seen anything from Libertarian Rupert Boneham up on the TV airwaves.

Maybe this will change soon. In politics, it's possible to fix an ad campaign, and I don't know what Gregg has up his sleeve.  With less than 50 days left now, time's growing short.


Anonymous said...

I like the John Gregg for Governor ads, because they are John Gregg. He is funny and well versed on the issues facing our state.

Mike Pence on the other hand comes off as a stiff politician with an odd religious cult twist.

John Gregg just needs to step up his humor in making fun of his opponents obvious weaknesses on real issues, while promoting himself as the more competent and trustworthy choice.

Anonymous said...

Keep in mind most people won't start paying attention until the Governor debates.

Anonymous said...

I agree that the ads are beginning to get a little worn and tired. The first couple were solid ads that introduced John in a unique way but also allowed him to take a shot at Pence without coming off as a typical politician. These ads would have been ideal in June or July, but, alas, he had no money.

However, it's time to move to the next level and begin talking about Pence's positions like they're as scary as they truly are. There are stark differences in this race and Gregg needs to quit treating the differences like they're worthy of cute little stunts.

As tiring and over the top as typical negative campaign ads are--with scary voice-overs and all--it's time he takes that approach, because they work!

Anonymous said...

He does not have enough money to be warm and fuzzy.
Honestly IM more concerned that there are no persons of door in any of the spots. For being the Party of Inclusion, there is none in his spots.

Do you really think that the folks up in lake county could care less about the clip and curl?

The new spot is really sucky. The sound is terrible.I love the concept, but the spot came off like a their grade video project.

I get where he is going with these spots, the problem is that he just does not have enough money to pull it off. I love the guy,but who ever is running his campaign needs a spanking.

Anonymous said...

It's hard to change course after a train wreck. Can you say...over?

Anonymous said...

At this point, I still know almost nothing about John Gregg. I was polled on the phone tonight, I am guessing by a marketing company for a Republican candidate. I could not honestly answer who I am going to vote "for" for gov. I had to say, it's more like who I am going to vote against. BTW, I asked if there was a third choice and the poller did not seem to know, so I don't think the third party candidate will hurt anyone at all. I did say that healthcare is my top issue in this election. It appears that one or more republican candidates are feeling some pressure. I have been polled a number of times and the same names keep cropping up.

Anonymous said...

I like that the ads aren't so strident and negative. But they also aren't effective, and that worries me. Gregg comes off as a hillbilly, out of his league. I'd like to see something more professional looking that emphasizes his background and qualifications and - gasp - addresses the issues.