The new Tide Laundry Detergent does stay-at-home dads right

by Daddy Mojo on October 26, 2011

More often than not dads in TV advertisements are portrayed as knuckleheads, jocks or ‘dumb-dad.’  The ‘dumb-dad’ is the generic dimwit father that buys a falcon with the money he saves by switching insurance companies.  Every dad on television doesn’t need to be a scholar who can cook and operate a chainsaw.  However, it is nice to see the dad who is shown in an intelligent or humorous way, without being demeaning.

The latest commercial from Tide is a good example of how to treat a stay-at-home dad.  For the record, Tide didn’t contact me to write about this spot.  I just saw the spot on TV and loved how it portrayed a SAHD.


It’s direct

“It’s classic problem solving”, the dad says early in the spot.  My wife has often told me that sometimes it’s tough to talk to me (or men) because we just want results and are action oriented.  We don’t want to talk about the issue, just tell us what it is and it will either be fixed or ignored.   Being a stay-at-home parent is problem solving, albeit with lots of patience and a little psychology.

It’s funny and real

At :14 the dad says, “see this thing here.”  I’m a stay-at-home dad and I say that every time I do the laundry.  I don’t know what to call some of the things that I wash, I just know that if there’s a stain on it my wife will see it and ask for it to be washed again.

It’s unexpected

The girl at the end of the spot asks dad a question that most of us wouldn’t know how to handle.  The dad takes the style of hair braiding one step further by asking if she wants a herringbone or fishtail French braid.  When she says herringbone, he goes even further and compliments her by saying “good call.”  Go Dad.

It’s entertaining

Its playful nature is enjoyable and very easy to watch.  Some people will watch it and think to themselves that they know a SAHD like that; while others will think that such a dad can only live on television.

Whatever your thoughts on this Tide spot it’s certainly more respectful than the Ragu debacle that C.C. Chapman experienced.  Including a dad or SAHD in an advertising campaign doesn’t guarantee success. As a SAHD, we are a market, but we don’t need to be wined and dined, just don’t speak down to us all the time.  The simple steps, like reaching out to stay-at-home parents, vs. specifically reaching out to the stay-at-home moms is one thing to do.

What other commercials have treated stay-at-home dads with respect?

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Zach Rosenberg October 27, 2011 at 1:39 am

Funny, I think the only part I disliked was the “see this thing here” line. Otherwise, dude looks intelligent and together – and thank the stars, they put him in a shirt with a COLLAR, not just a t-shirt. And he’s clean-shaven! Good job knowing your audience, Tide!


Jeff Bogle October 27, 2011 at 9:11 am

Fantastic spot!


Phil @dadvsspawn October 27, 2011 at 9:38 am

Yes, they get points for this. Now the price just needs to be the same as the generic stuff.

Fifty cent coupons don’t help, either.


Matthew Peregoy October 27, 2011 at 10:07 am

seriously dude, are you poaching my ideas? check my blog in about 10 minutes.


Trey Burley October 27, 2011 at 10:39 am

Great minds, something something. That spot is amazing and you also caught the C.C./Ragu issue. That Ragu mess was offensive on so many levels.


Laura Mayes October 27, 2011 at 10:56 am

Smart advertising always gets my vote. I’m sure they all get “this thing here” clean. But Tide is proving to be a thinking company….or at least thinking clearly enough to hire a smart ad agency, and then to greenlight this commercial. Well done, Tide. I’m buying you from now on.


Rmlauk October 27, 2011 at 11:37 am

No doubt a long ignored audience.


Lindsay October 27, 2011 at 2:53 pm

Hello Mr. Burley,

I am writing to you because I was impressed by the dedication shown on your blog to being an involved dad. At the company I work for, WonderDads, we think dads like you are heroes. We are a leading publisher of dad/child books and a media company expressly designed to help dads engage with their children and families.

On our website, we have a growing collection of child related blogs; we’d like to include you as a featured guest dad blogger. In addition, we’re planning to publish a book inspired by the idea of “101 Lesson from Dad Bloggers”. Should you choose to participate, your blog would be featured in the new book!

We’re very excited by the chance to give hero dads like you the opportunity to show the world that the stereotypical portrayal of dads as bumbling fools is as outdated as it is inaccurate. If you’re interested in contributing, please send me an e-mail, and I’ll give you further details.




David Thomas October 27, 2011 at 4:11 pm

It’s on spot except for the outfit. When I’m working from home and doing a load of laundry I’m in jeans and a sweatshirt. And I leave the french braids to my wife…Otherwise solid commercial. Almost looks like it’s a spec ad, but you saw it on TV right?


Trey Burley October 27, 2011 at 8:47 pm

Yup, we saw it during the NBC news. However The Real Matt Daddy saw it during Survivor.


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