Friday, 17 April 2009

Numerals are the New Letters. Word. I Mean... Integer.

Product: injurylawyers4u
Slogan: "100% Lawyers! 100% Compensation!"
Recommended Alternative: "WeSpendsoMuchTimeWrkingonyourKses,WeHavtoAbbrevi8Everythin WeWriteByondRecognition!"

This one by request of my sister, as we've laughed at it on television together many times.

Here's the offending advert:

Again, there's so much wrong here it's hard to know where to start. The fact that the guy in the advert feels the need to clarify that "They're real lawyers!" says an awful lot.

The biggest immediate problem is the name. injurylawyers4u contains a number of crass colloquialisms that are simply out of place in the name of a legal service company worthy of any respect. The obvious horror is the clumsy "4u" contraction, but not content with merely butchering the English language in this way, they also deign to remove all the spaces and capital letters. Phones4u can just about get away with this; it's still a pretty unpleasant way to write, but at least they are purveyors of mobile telephones, rather than (allegedly) qualified legal personell employed to help people through difficult and painful situations in their lives.
Seriously, would you trust these people to give you legal advice??

All this, and we've yet to even address the slogan. I'm sure I don't need to point out why this one is hilarious, but lets subject it to the usual over-analysis anyway...

"100% lawyers!" Not like all those other legal firms who make do with 80% lawyers and have to make up the numbers with zookeepers and sous chefs! So when you hire a lawyer, you're guaranteed to get a lawyer. Every time! One would have thought that trading standards would keep tabs on this sort of thing, but I suppose you can't be too careful.

"100% compensation!" I suppose this refers to comments on other similar advertisements where they say something like, "You get 100% of the compensation because we recover our costs from the other side". This clumsy rewording, though, retains the depressingly misleading spirit of that statement while also managing to crush the meaning out almost entirely.

I've often wondered what type of customer this kind of advertising approach is meant to attract. Anyone with a modicum of intelligence would dismiss them on the grounds of their appalling use of language, and everyone else would at least shop around for the best price. I think if we can ever find the type of person who is actually *attracted* to a company like this, we will have a far greater idea of what is wrong with the world.

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