Today, Bnet writer Jim Edwards wrote an article titled–
The “State Farm Guy” Is So Unpopular Even Google Suggests Insults for Him
My first though upon reading this was: phew, it’s not just me!
Just last night, as I watched television with friends, a State Farm commercial came on and, per usual, I cringed a bit. I’m pretty outspoken when it comes to my opinions on commercials (for instance, that hipster kid from the Toyota commercial– I don’t like him one bit). Marketing and Public Relations, while vastly different, are also quite similar (yes, I realize what I just wrote). So I felt pretty uninhibited as I spoke up and told my friends: “You know, I really, really do not like that guy.”
Apparently none of them had an opinion one way or another, and I actually began to feel a little guilty. After all, what had this guy done? There is nothing excessively annoying about him. I’m sure he’s a nice guy and all. And yet…I just couldn’t grasp why his presence troubled me so much.
And then I came upon Edwards article, and the whole world began to make a little more sense. According to Edwards, the spokesman, named Eddie Matos, seems to be receiving a lot of negative attention from viewers.
Describing Matos as a “cross between Tom Cruise and Christian Slater,” Edwards makes the same observations as myself: “There’s nothing specifically wrong with his performance. It’s as competent and anodyne as any from thousands of other commercials. But it’s that nebulous quality that many seem to find grating.In one ad, Matos repeatedly interrupts Carrie Maddox, a State Farm agent, as they compete to deliver their lines.”
The YouTube community apparently feels similar disdain for Matos, with comments on the State Farm’s YouTube channel featuring comments such as:
I hate you so much State Farm douche. I swear you are a psychopath & your smile gives me nightmares………
Get your head out of your ass State Farm! this guy is annoying and all these ads with him are lame and cheesy. Pull the ads! they aren’t helping you sell insurance or making you look ‘trustworthy’ and ‘friendly’ like you’re trying to do with them, you’re just turning people off and looking fake
But perhaps the best comment references State Farm’s competitor, AllState, who have launched a creative and hilarious ad campaign featuring comedienne Dennis Haysbert (yes, that’s Dennis from 30 Rock):
I wish Mayhem from All State’s commercials would destroy this guy.
I have to agree…well in part. While I don’t want Matos “destroy[ed],” I’m certainly as confused as the rest by the choice of Matos as a spokesperson. When choosing an individual to represent a brand or company, one would think the association would run some trials and tests togauge the audiences reactions. I’m not expert at market research, but this seems a bit like commonsense. Did all of the people in the focus group really like Matos? Was he viewed in the same context.
Well, what ever the reasoning behind their choice for picking Matos, or the reasoning behind my odd contempt for him, I will not be so rash as to join the “I Hate the State Farm Guy” Facebook group (which, by the way, has over 2,500 members!). Instead, I will quietly sit through State Farm’s commercials as I eagerly anticipate the next AllState Mayhem commercial. To end on a high not, I’ve included one of my favorite Mayhem commercials. Enjoy!