Tuesday, June 24, 2008

The Emperor has No Clothes

Yesterday there was a full page, four color ad in USA TODAY for the new M & M's Premiums. I mentioned these in an earlier blog - I had read they were foil wrapped, larger than regular M & M's, and in new and intriguing flavors. Yahoo!!! What could be better? When I saw the ad in USA TODAY I knew it was game on and I had to get some. Quick.

First of all, let me warn you women - they are totally targeting us. These are in elegantly shaped boxes and the ad says - "Stylish. Sophisticated. Simply Fabulous!" What guy wants candy described like that? Is it chocolate or a pair of shoes? I can just hear the product planners on this one - "Let's make them shiny! Women like shiny things! Oh, and let's say they are shimmering chocolate gems in five glamorous flavors!" I kid you not - that's what the ad in USA TODAY says - shimmering chocolate gems in five glamorous flavors.

Let me be the first to say I don't want my flavors glamorous.

First of all they are NOT foil wrapped - they are metallic colored.

This is a picture of the Raspberry Almond (pinkish and biggest), Mocha (coppery) and Triple Chocolate (purplish). They are only slightly bigger than regular M & M's - I was expecting them to be significantly bigger. I didn't buy the Mint Chocolate ones because I'm not big on Mint Chocolate and the Chocolate Almond ones were sold out. I was sad, now I'm glad.

Here are my thoughts: Raspberry Almond was my favorite and I'm not a big raspberry person. I do like almonds, however and the combination was good. Would I buy them again? Probably not - I'd rather have regular ol' almond M & M's. (These also cost about twice as much as regular M & M's.)

Triple Chocolate (which is described as "truly tempting layers of milk chocolate, white chocolate & dark chocolate") is just truly lame. Tastes like a blob. These don't have candy shells like regular M & M's, they're just kind of balls of chocolate. I didn't know how much I loved the candy shell until it was gone. M & Ms really benefit from the crunch of the shell. I don't know what these things are - but they ain't M & M's in my book!

Mocha is like a naked M & M mixed with coffee. Ho-Hum. Actually they are all just naked M & M's in trendy flavors. They look really good, but they have nothing to offer.

These will look fancy at parties. They are very trendy. They are indeed "Stylish. Sophisticated. Simply Fabulous!" But they are not as fun and don't taste as good as the regular M & Ms. M& M's Premiums are the fashion models of the M & M's line. They cost more and they look pretty, but they don't have the soul of the regular M & M. They won't be there when you need a good, reliable, noncomplicated chocolate fix. I don't need my candy to be glamorous, I need it to be good.

Maybe they can change the slogan from "Melts in your mouth, not in your hands" to "Who needs flavor when you've got fashion?"

Mars may make a killing with these, but I think they forgot what makes the M & M so good. (And indeed, what makes the M & M the M & M!) It's the candy shell. The crunchy shell offsets the creamy chocolate. It's a neat contrast of textures. It's a beautiful thing already. Why do we have to make everything "stylish, sophisticated, and fabulous?" Those things are like dust in the wind - they change with the passing fancies of designers and other trend setters. Don't we hold qualities such as dependable or loyal or funny or smart as more valuable? Make the most of who you are - that's what makes you extraordinary. Don't buy into other people's ideas of what is "sophisticated and fabulous." What's really fabulous is being yourself. And you don't need metallic coating to do that.

1 comment:

Heidi said...

I haven't tried these things but that photo you've posted resembles something I've seen many times in a diaper. Not really appetizing. My favorite candy has always been peanut M&Ms -- I hope they stick with what they do well and leave the rest to Godiva. It's a good lesson you've laid out -- stick to being ourselves, because that's actually the best ever.