Monthly Archives: August 2009

A cultural question to you as internationals…

Actually I wanted to discuss the cultural aspects of Sex Sells later on. But due to the fact that it was so obvious in our Benetton presentation today I have to state it now:

“There is a difference in cultural feelings towards Sex Sells Strategies!!!”

And the Benetton case revealed that once more.
Some of you were more than shocked by the company’s ads we showed you today. Some of you found them disgusting. And some of you just said afterwards (Not to cite someone particularly, but yes:-)) “What was so bad about the ad with the two horses? I just think it’s funny”


Yes, what was so bad? In the case of this blog I only want to refer on the sexual issues: So what is bad about the “Genitals of different coloured people” or the “Coloured Condoms Campaign” or the “Two Horses”?

Don’t get me wrong here, as I definitely cannot say that we are used to these ads in Europe. Not used to, but we are not shocked…

I’m sorry but I have to ask you again:

“As a citizen of your home country, as an international student  – How did you feel watching these ads???

Unbenannt2Someone said: “I have never heard of Benetton before” and one of you stated:
“It’s disgusting. I would never shop at a Benetton store.” So here Sex Sells definitely didn´t work…

I have to admit that I wear Benetton clothes since I have been four years old. In Germany and also in Europe the company is an institution. So noone will ask you ” What is Benetton? Is that something about cigarettes?”:-)

It’s the other way round. One of my best friends is a big fan of the brand and she wears the clothes not only because she likes the colours but because she identifies with the sociocritical, political background. She feels these issues have to be discussed to solve them.


And honestly, I´m not joking:  She now started working as a CSR responsible for a big auditing firm at home. And… which is probably not a circumstance she has her own small organization to help Tsunami orphans, as she was in Sri Lanka when the catastrophe happened. Just have a look at: Human Helps Human e.V.

“Hey Rieke, I had to mention you here!!! Maybe you as well want to join the discussion…



Filed under Communications, Marketing, PR

Aphrodite, Eros & Co – the antique answer on Sex Sells?

Do you think Sex Sells is a modern invention? A strategy the advertising and PR branch developed just to raise awareness or sell products? There are a lot of evidences, which say: Sex Sells exists probably as long as we do….

The cave paintings of the Cro Magon people who lived around 30,000 -10,000 B.C. attest the “sexual publications” of our earliest ancestors in Eurasia. The representations show a variety of sexual activities, which were usually released to the others by painting them on the walls. Scientists assume those were rituals, which were celebrated to contact with the spirit world.

Eros & Psyche     source:

Eros & Psyche, source:

Since around 20,000 B.C. both the Greeks and the Romans decorated pottery with obvious sexual scenes. And above all the sexual adventures of the Roman emperors are still notorious. Thousands of antique sexual writings are still published and sold. The story of Aphrodite, Eros and Psyche, Cleopatry´s love affairs or Ovid´s sexual poems “Ars Amatoria” still belong to the world´s bestsellers.

In my eyes, Sex Sells is a never-ending story – from former times until now and further on. It´s the oldest strategy ever, but it still works.

What do you mean? Are Sex Sells Strategies old or new? Copy or innovation?


Filed under Communications, Marketing, PR