Got a problem? Ask a woman.

Got a problem? Ask a woman. Or at least that’s Vanish’s advice. It seems the detergent brand want to make their brand message as clear as their product will make that raspberry stain on your favourite girdle. Not satisfied that their fuschia packaging made clear enough who their target customer is, the company have turned to less subtle methods in their recent TV marketing campaign: ‘Got a stain? Got a tip?’.

At its root, the campaign is actually fairly good, as far as advertising campaigns encouraging consumers to engage with a brand via tragic internet displays of just how many people have too much time on their hands go. Consumers are being encouraged to upload videos of their problem garment to Vanish’s website for the online community of Vanish fairy godmothers to advise on.

The problem is that every single one of the supposed customers shown on the TV ad is a woman. Because obviously, only women are stupid enough to spill their food or get their pretty little knickers in a twist over something as trivial as a stain. And obviously, only a woman knows how to wash clothes: that’s her favourite thing to do in fact, so much so that she can’t imagine anything better than spending her free time giving out stain removal advice online. Thank you, Vanish, on behalf of all women, for finally giving me this much needed outlet for self expression.

Vanish is the number one stain removal product according to the owner of the Vanish brand Reckitt Benckiser’s own website. It has a responsibility to lead the market by not relying on lazy female stereotypes to sell more product. You might not be surprised to hear that of its 20-strong worldwide Executive Committee and Board of Directors, just two of the company’s bosses are women. [http://www.rb.com/rb-worldwide/executive-committee]

For me at least, the egg on Vanish’s face is going to leave a much tougher stain than even their own detergent can cope with.

BY: Kirstie Fairnie