Have you seen the new Subway life coach helmet commercial? It’s easy to check out on YouTube and see what you think. Life coaching is not often the focus of a commercial, so it’s worth a look.
What is the Subway Life Coach Helmet Commercial?
The new Subway life coach helmet commercial starts with a couple eating at Subway. The man is wearing a helmet, which he describes as his life coach. With the old theme song from Monty Python in the background, the man is then shown going through the day wearing his helmet. The voice in the helmet barks orders at him to make good choices – get up early, use the stairs, talk to the pretty girl, don’t eat that bad food. It’s the attempt to eat bad food that leads to the point of the commercial: “you don’t need a life coach – Subway makes better choices easy.”
Will the Subway Commercial Have an Effect on the Coaching Industry?
Though the commercial basically states that you don’t need a life coach to make the right lifestyle choices, and the life coach in the commercial (a voice inside a helmet) is a parody of what a real life coach does, this new Subway TV spot may not be bad news at all for the coaching industry.
There is no such thing as bad publicity, the old adage goes. Is this true? Did BP enjoy all the publicity after their catastrophic oil spill in the Gulf? Did Toyota, once known for extraordinary quality, enjoy all the bad publicity their stuck accelerators brought? But, this new Subway life coach helmet commercial is not anything close to that type of bad publicity – those involves deaths and environmental disaster – this is just a obnoxious life coach! A million Subway life coach helmet commercials wouldn’t do that kind of damage!
In this commercial, coaching comes across as a bit obnoxious and perhaps a bit silly. No big deal. Those who have had life coaching may laugh, but they will still rely on their own experiences, and not this commercial, when forming opinions about the industry. No harm, no foul for those who have used a life coach.
For people who have not had experience with life coaching, or who have never heard of it (what planet have they been living on?), this commercial could certainly validate the claim that there is no such thing as bad publicity.
Alan Sorensen, an economics professor at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business published a study in Marketing Science on book reviews in the New York Times. The study found that good reviews for well-known authors boosted sales by over 40 percent, while a negative review caused sales to drop by 15 percent. However, for unknown authors, it didn’t matter if the reviews were positive or negative, just the fact that the book was reviewed pushed sales up by 33 percent.
Let’s Cheer Subway For Using a Life Coach in a Commercial
It seems likely that people who have used life coaches will not be swayed one way or the other by a silly commercial, and it is possible that bad publicity, and this is merely silly publicity, may actually be better than no publicity. The Subway life coach helmet commercial will probably not do any harm to the coaching industry, and life coaches should have a little fun with the ad – they can even use it in their sessions (show the commercial, have a helmet the client can wear, etc) to get a laugh and lighten the mood.
Perhaps coaches should put on an old football helmets and go to Subway for lunch. Maybe the next Subway life coach helmet commercial will feature real life coaches poking a little good-natured fun at themselves while generating some more of that valuable publicity!