banned

Alexandria Morgan and the PR of Banned Ads

There’s an old saying that says “all publicity is good publicity” and sometimes that is true.

Alexandria Morgan is a 20-year-old model with a star on the rise thanks to a combination of smart social media interaction and a sexy commercial that was deemed too hot for TV. The ad in question, promoting the TomTom runner’s heart monitor, is racy in more ways than one. It features Morgan jogging, clad only in running shorts and a strapless bra.

Suffice to say, Morgan fills out her outfit – and the screen – in a riveting way most people would find difficult to ignore. When asked about the controversy surrounding the commercial ban, Morgan reacted as expected, saying it’s just a body, what is everyone so upset about? The response might come across as cliché and scripted, but it’s just one more step in the expected PR dance. Morgan and TomTom both know exactly what they are doing. Get close to the edge, stick a toe or, in this case, ample cleavage, over the edge and let the chips fall where they may.

And, for both the brand and the blonde bombshell, those chips are falling very nicely, thank you very much. Every time someone mentions the banned ad, both TomTom and Morgan get nice returns. Their brands have become incessantly searched keywords, leading not only to increased views of the commercial in question, but increased opportunities across the board. TomTom is now being discussed as a market innovator operating across market segments, and Morgan got a call up from the folks at Sports Illustrated. She might be the Swimsuit Issue’s next “it” girl … all thanks to an ad that was “too hot for TV.”

And it’s not like Morgan doesn’t have a point. The ad was aimed at consumers who watched Pam Anderson do exactly the same thing on network television every week on Baywatch. It was “controversial” then, and, in some circles, remains controversial decades later. Controversial…and highly profitable.

Welcome to the roller coaster PR of sex appeal.

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Jonah Engler

Former Stock Broker and Financial Expert, Jonah Engler is a New York City based entrepreneur who writes about entrepreneurship, investing, public relations, and other topics that fascinate him. Engler explores Entrepreneurship through his Mobile Phone Franchises in the NYC area.