Thursday, September 13, 2012

Awkward Toronto Branding: Glory Hole Doughnuts


My friend Martha posted a link to this Toronto gourmet donut joint on Facebook. I have to admit, I literally laughed out loud when I saw the name and graphics.

In either a masterful or idiotic stroke of coy in-joking, they managed to make their donut brand make people think about dirty, anonymous bathroom sex encounters.

(On the site, the taglines "hand made with love" and "give us a try!" don't help either.)

Personally, I find it off-putting. I'm looking at that donut, and wondering what has been through that hole...

Previously in awkward Toronto branding: Mammoth Erection

16 comments:

  1. they haven't done any ads referring to 'jelly rolls'? :-) :-)

    I-)

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  2. Its a new type of glory hole. I really like it. I also have some new type of glory holes if you want then please tell i will share with you.

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    1. That's the best comment spam ever. Thank you.

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  3. It's located on Queen Street!

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  4. The actual "hole" parts (like Timbits) are called Little Glories, which is great branding. They are sweet and just right and the name suits them.

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  5. Dear "Ethical Adman" i really would like to call you to task and recommend that you should take into account the "top of mind" and brand recognition potential of double entendre in a crowded and highly competitive business category with their branding choice alone. I would highly recommend reading "Disruption. Overturning Conventions and Shaking up the Marketplace" by Jean Marie Dru. Glory Hole, on their brand alone, have taken a business category that generally is fluffy, frilly, homey, bakey (sp) and presented their product in a way that is cheeky, fun and playful. It, from a campaignable standpoint is in a highly sought after position in which the cheeky, irreverent yet product focused, strategic focus and brand voice can almost write itself....... No need for pesky agency support or input ( I've been in the industry for over 20 years so this point from an economic standpoint to a small brand is the holy grail!!).

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    1. Sure, Anon, this kind of stunt branding will get lots of short-term earned media and will appeal to a certain audience. But can young, irreverent male customers keep the place in business? And how many people do they turn off, who are either offended or just turned off by the "brand voice" that talks about sticking your cock through a hole?

      This is no "Pink Taco". It's just nasty.

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    2. Wow! There's some professional, objective conversation! I'll let your response speak for itself

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  6. woah whoever wrote the above ramble should speak in english and walk away from the boardroom.... now. yikes! change your career - you have literally swallowed, digested and become everything that is repugnant about the industry and it's terminology.

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    1. I hate marketing jargon too. It's douchey.

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  7. @Tom Meggison - is this blog not called The Ethical Adman - An industry look at social issues in advertising and media??????? Is the "marketing jargon" you speak of not essential to an educated and insight driven conversation???? Am i not simply highlighting that this branding is good? (lets leave your perception of Glory Hole out of this for a minute)...... Perhaps Im an idiot, blind, oblivious, depraved, whatever BUT i am at a loss as to where "sticking your cock through a hole" is part of the brand voice???? Please enlighten me

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    1. Not "my" perception, Anon:

      "A 'glory hole' is usually a hip-high hole drilled, punched or filed in a wall between stalls in a public restroom or adult bookstore peepshow; through this hole one man will insert his penis for sexual contact with another person. Usually it is the centralized location which facilitates impersonal, anonymous sex, rather than the structural feature of the setting itself.

      To use a glory hole a man puts his finger through the hole to indicate interest in sexual activity. Offering a condom indicates interest in protected sex. If the other party is also interested, he will accept the offer and put his penis through the hole to be serviced. The most common activity is oral sex, and to a lesser extent anal intercourse, a handjob, or vaginal intercourse.[citation needed] Glory holes are today most commonly found in established adult video/bookstore arcades, sex clubs, gay bathhouses, and adult theaters.
      If a glory hole is found between two booths in a video booth at an adult bookstore, the person who wishes to perform oral sex will normally be seated in a booth. The seated (and sometimes kneeling) position commonly signals to others that they are there in order to perform oral sex – which allows those who wish to receive oral sex to take the adjoining booth. That second person will normally remain standing."

      - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glory_hole_(sexual_slang)

      And no, jargon is not necessary. If you can't state your opinion in plain language, it is my belief that you are hiding its weakness behind pseudo-professional blather.

      "Eschew obfuscation"

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  8. I clearly see that you have the "definition" fully covered.

    When it comes to the brand voice, it is fun, cheeky, irreverent, sexy NOT sexual and lives in a space that is truly unique in the business category. If it was crude, offensive, demeaning, objectifying, etc, I TOO would take exception as you do. I DO however not see any of that and that is my opinion.

    your responses have been exponentially more graphic than anything they have on their site, FB page, etc

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    1. Just calling it the way I see it. I think shock branding is cheap and lazy, myself.

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    2. "Shock Branding"?????? Again, i would revert back to an earlier point that there really is nothing that is "SHOCK" about the brand...... It's cheeky. It's fun. It's fun. It's irreverent....... I again would task to have a clear, not personally biased, example of SHOCK branding

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    3. I'm sorry, but this is pointless. Thanks for reading and commenting, but I just don't think you're getting it.

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