Wednesday, October 18, 2017

133. Why Don’t You Shop Around With a Friend? 680 HOME APPLIANCES INC.


In the late 70s and 80s, 680 HOME APPLIANCES INC. built a reputation as the go-to place for affordable domestic appliances and electronics, big and small, for the home, for school and for work. It was well known for its wide range of products—from calculators to electric fans, lamps and TV, rice cookers and gas ranges-- all at bargain prices. To top it all, it gave away lots of freebies too!


680 HOME APPLIANCES began its store operations in August 28, 1968 at its first and original store on 680 Rizal Avenue, Sta Cruz. Manila—hence the name, 680. Just 11 years after, the company moved its main office to a spacious 5-storey building on a sprawling 3,300 sq. m. lot along EDSA, on 839-841 Edsa, Diliman in Quezon City.


It was just a matter of time that 680 HOME APPLIANCES expanded its operations base to P. Burgos, Makati (1989), Imus, Cavite (1995) and the following year, Dasmariñas. Later in 1996, the Baliuag branch opened, followed by the one in Tanay (1997).

WATCH A 680 HOME APPLIANCE AD HERE:

As well known as its easy-on-the-pocket merchandise is 680 HOME APPLIANCES' brand of advertising. Shot mostly in betacam formats, they looked rather unfinished, and amateurishly directed. Most memorable was its jingle, with a cloying, but easy-to-recall music and lyrics that went something like: ”why don’t you…shop around, with your friends…”. Why, 680 HOME APPLIANCES even managed to snag celebrity endorsers to appear in its TV ads!

SOURCE:
youtube, 680 Home Appliance, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3B7FlKYyUew, uploaded by fishbolero, 2 Jan. 2008

Saturday, October 14, 2017

132. Is That Who I Think She Is? CHERIE GIL for CITROBELLE, 1979


CITROBELLE is a brand name of a skin cleanser produced by Oro Laboratories in the early 1970s. It was used to clean facial skin that ordinary washing cannot do, to help remove blackheads and prevent pimples and acne problems. Just like its major competitor Eskinol, CITROBELLE contains tiny cleansing granules in a medicated citrus-y solution, leaving skin soft and younger-looking.

CITROBELLE1972 Ad
CITROBELLE print ads appeared in major weekend magazines, featuring generic female models touting the efficacy of the product with its unique Lemon Action.  

Still going strong five years later, CITROBELLE enlisted an up and coming teener with an impeccable showbiz pedigree.

The only daughter of actress Rosemarie Gil and 60s singer-actor Eddie Mesa, Evangeline Cheryl Rose Eigenmann y Gil (b.12 May 1963) had made several early appearances in films and TV as an actress and singer, using names as Sherrie Gil, Cherry or Cherrie Gil. Not many know that also did commercial modeling, bagging a 2-year contract to model for CITROBELLE  Skin Cleanser at the tender age of 16.

CITROBELLE, Print Ad, Woman's Home Companion, 1979

She did at least 3 versions of these CITROBELLE print ads, but her big break came when people took notice of her in the  1980 film, “Problem Child” with Lloyd Samartino. That paved the way for many more appearances and recognitions in films, teleseryes and stage. Gil’s memorable body of works include: Manila by Night (1980), Gaano Kadalas ang Minsan, Oro, Plata, Mata (1982), Sana’y Wala ng Wakas (1986), My First Romance (2006).  She is best known for her role as the antagonist Lavinia Arguelles in the movie, “Bituing Walang Ningning”. As a singer, she recorded  her only hit song, “Boy”, in the late 70s.

CITROBELLE AD, Woman;s Home Companion, 1979

A favorite soap star,, she did her first TV drama, May Bukas pa, in 2000. In 2006 she was cast in the hit TV remake of Gulong Ng Palad, and was in the 2010 fantasy, Grazilda on GMA 7. Her latest guestings include Alyas Robin Hood (2017) and Tadhana, as Madam Bital.


SOURCE:

Monday, October 9, 2017

131. Brand Icons: SUSTAGEN’S SUSY AND GENO, 1985


The adorable duo that drove Filipino kids to pester their mothers to buy cans and cans of Sustagen came to life in 1985. SUSY AND GENO were the marketing brainchildren of Mead Johnson, the company behind the nutrition supplement , Sustagen. Mr. Chichi Barros, Consumer Products Director for Marketing conceived the idea of having a tandem of adorable mascots who will epitomize the values of parents and children alike.

Sustagen, with its “23 Resistensya Builders”was, undoubtedly, a superior chocolate-flavored health supplement, but it looked and felt so serious to most kids. 

The mascots were the perfect answers to make the premium brand more relatable. SUSY was designed as a young girl with lots of charming personality, a perfect complement to the friendly, wholesome GENO.

The SUSY AND GENO tandem,  both embodiments of happy, healthy children, turned Sustagen as the no. 1 selling milk in the 80s decade. SUSY AND GENO not only appeared in countlessTV ads, but also went on school and supermarket  tours to perform, dance, sing and promote the health benefits of the brand.

WATCH A 1980s "SUSY & GENO" TVC HERE:

The brand mascots were the stars of their own Sustagen’s Kiddie Club, that had over 45,000 members at its peak. They went around the Philippines—attended town fiestas,  visited classrooms, hosted week-end gatherings, led puppet-making workshops,  and received countless invitations to grace birthday parties! Wherever they went, SUSY AND GENO spread the message of good health together with Mead Johnson’s professional nutritionists who often accompanied them on tours.


The high cost of mounting these activities forced their temporary retirement,  but by late 1990s, SUSY AND GENO staged a comeback. In 2013, SUSY AND GENO were seen again as adult mascots, leading separate lives and careers. This generated some interest on facebook, where the drama of their reunion played out.


SUSY AND GENO are often held up as perfect examples of the effective use of mascots in marketing promotions and communications—especially to kids who have to grapple with abstract ideas such as health, nutrition and friendship. The brand mascots have succeeded in explaining these in fun, engaging ways that allow kids to learn without losing their sense of wonder.

WATCH "SUSY & GENO" CASE STUDY HERE:


SOURCE:
Susy & Geno Photo: De la Torre, Visitacion. Advertising in the Philippines: Its Historical, Cultural and Social Dimensions. Tower Book House, 1989. P. 102.
youtube: Sustagen Con Yelo, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IoRS21GOb_A, uploaded by Want Promo, publihsed 12 Feb. 2010
youtube: Susy and Geno (A Case Study): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DWqJuPhQtiQ,, published by Ace-Saatchi & Saatchi-PH, Aug. 13, 2014

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

130. Brand Stories: RADIOWEALTH, INC. (1930)

RADIOWEALTH APPLIANCE AND ELECTRONIC, FOUNDED IN 1930

Since its foundation in 1930, RADIOWEALTH has been making appliances with an eye to the future, putting out modern products which become pace-setters in the local appliance market.

It was started by a visionary from Camarines, Domingo M. Guevara (b.1909/d.ca.1990s) who took up a correspondence course to become a radio technician—even as he was manning the family farm. 

After a land dispute that made him decide to move to Manila, Guevara set up a a one-man radio repair shop that would grow to become the country’s most dominant, well-known name in electronics and appliances before Japan-made products took over the market.

The enterprise, fittingly called RADIOWEALTH, would make Guevara one of the richest and most successful modern-day industrialists of his time.

RADIOWEALTH VINTAGE LOGO, 1955

The company’s history has interesting highlights:

OWN A RADIO FOR 62 CENTAVOS A DAY, 1957

1930 - Founded by Domingo M. Guevara as a radio repair shop an later, as a radio dealer.

RADIOWEALTH-THE BEST BUY! 1957

1935 – Incorporated, started importation and distribution of radio sets.

RADIOWEALTH HAS THEM ALL!, 1957

1951 – Under exchange controls, launched assembly of radio sets.

FOREFRONT OF ELECTRONIC PROGRESS, 1955

1955 – Pioneered in the manufacture of TV sets.

RADIOWEALTH DRY BATTERY, 1957

1956 – Started the manufacture of electronic components such as transformers, coils, chassis and metal parts.

BRIGHT MOMENTS IN TRANSISTORS, 1955

1958 – Started the manufacture of room air  conditioner.

MISS PHILIPPINES LALAINE BENNETT MODELS FOR RADIOWEALTH, 1963

1963 – Started the manufacture of local televison tuners under a license from Standard Kollsman Industries, the major manufacturer of TV tuners in the U.S.

RADIOWEALTH CARMEN MODEL, COMBINATION TV, PHONO, STEREO. 1965
1964 – Introduced TV sets with the implosion-proof Shellbond picture tube.

RADIOWEALTH ODOR-FREE KOLDPOINT, 1972

1965 – Introduced Koldpoint refrigerators

NOCTURNE PANORAMIC HI-FI RADIO-PHONO, 1960

1966 – Organized nationwide Radiowealth franchise dealerships.

RANGE OF RADIOWEALTH BRANDED PRODUCTS, 1968

1967 – Introduced the RW-RCA TV. Added ranges, beds, pianos, to its household appliance lines. Received Presidential Award for pioneering in electronics.


1968 – Acquired production facilities for manufacturing Worthington central and packaged air conditioning systems.

RADIOWEALTH PORTABLE APOLLO, 1972

1969 – Introduced the revolutionary Apollo 19 TV with Bubble Screen, the Nocturne LSD stereo with Light and Sound  Diascope and the Interlude AC-DC operated stereo.

This year, RADIOWEALTH developed the Professional modular super solid state component stereo, the Apollo 16 and the Apollo 17 TV.

1ST AC-BATTERY CONSOLE STEREO, 1969

The company also designed and invented an authentic voltage regulator which saves appliances from damage resulting from voltage irregularities. The inexpensive device is now on the market.

NOCTURNE LSD WITH PSYCHEDELIC LIGHTS, 1969

RADIOWEALTH subscribed to professional advertising and the brand was actively promoted tri-media and in-store. The brand continued to flourish through the  70s, but the influx of Japanese brands caused major shifts in brand preference. RADIOWEALTH,  thus, embarked on a “Buy Filipino” Campaign.

RADIOWEALTH XMAS AD, 1969

But by then, Guevara was secure in his RADIOWEALTH business and had branched out to other other lucrative pursuits.  He even forayed into politics –elected a delegate to the 1971 Constitutional Convention that he thought he could use  to advance his platform of industrializing the Philippines.

AFFORDABLE RADIOWEALTH COLOR TV, 1969

When Martial Law was declared, Guevara’s business plan was jeopardized, especially since he was one of 7 delegates who voted against martial law. Because of this, he was pressured by the Marcos government which wanted to take over his successful business. Knowing it was futile to fight Marcos, Guevara—whose health has been affected by the turn of events—together with his wife, fled to the United States.

RADIOWEALTH, YOURS FOR YEARS. 1971 PRINT AD.

RADIOWEALTH eventually closed, signaling an end of a shining era of industrial revolution. But Guevara’s legacy remains in Mandaluyong, where a busy, bustling street on where his manufacturing plants stood-Libertad St.--has been renamed after him—Domingo M. Guevara St. the self-made industrialist died in the 1990s.

THE GUEVARA ENTERPRISE MANDALUYONG PLANT in 1970 


SOURCES:
Various issues of the Sunday Times Magazine, 1963-1972
Various issues of Philippine Free Press, 1955-1960

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

129. KATIALIS AND BALATKINIS: A Tale of Two Ointments and the Brothers that Created Them.

KATIALIS, formulated by Dr. Lorenzo Reyes, B&W print ad, 1946.

The most successful local skin ointment in history was formulated in the 1930s by Dr. Lorenzo C. Reyes (b.?/d. 1985) and mixed by his chemist brother, Manuel, at his Locre Laboratorio in San Lazaro, Manila. The name of  KATIALIS topical ointment was coined from “KATI”(itch) and “ALIS” (go away), and was widely marketed as an effective solution to skin diseases such as “tagihawat, anan, anghit, buni, alipunga, bungang araw, bulutong tubig, balakubak, sunog sa araw, masamang butlig, ulsera, sugat, pekas, galis, pigsa, butlig pagkatapos mag-ahit, sigid ng lamok, surot at iba pang maliit na hayop”.

KATIALIS was available in small jars, and was one of the first medicine brands advertised as being Philippine-made. Its whimsical ads showed allegorical figures like angels, biblical characters (the 3 Kings, for instance, bearing KATIALIS jars as gifts) and wild animals (to represent various skin ailments). After over 80 years, KATIALIS is still available in the market today. 

BALATKINIS, formulated by Dr. Manuel C. Reyes, B&W print ad, 1948

After concocting Katialis for 10 years for his brother, Manuel struck it on his own and came up with a copycat brand, BALATKINIS  in 1947. Like KATIALIS, the new BALATKINIS was guaranteed to effectively remove “galis, buni, pigsa, tagihawat, butlig, anan, pekas, alipunga, sugat na maliliit at kagat ng hayop tlad ng lamok, surot, pulgas, atbp.”

BALATKINIS also had its share of print advertising, going as far as capitalizing on the fact that its maker is the same Manuel C. Reyes, ”na sa loob ng 10 taon ay siya rin ang gumawa ng Katialis (pormula ni Dr. L. C. Reyes). Despite following the same marketing formula of the pioneering skin ointment, BALATKINIS did not quite take off, and failed to replicate KATIALIS’ pedigree of success.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

128. 1984 Creative Guild’s Radio Ad of the Year: GILLETTE’s RUBIE BLADE, “Harana” RC 30s.



The Creative Guild’s very frst radio ad of the year drew inspiration from the popular slice-of-life format, but further injected situations with a delightful brand of anticlimactic Pinoy humor.

As Bill Ibañez, then associate creative director of McCann-Erickson, now creative director at Great Wall Avertising and father of the RUBIE “Harana” 30-seconder ad, likes to say “Humor is my specialty. And Filipinos love it when a situation has a humorous twist.”

Source: flickr, Arne Kuilman
The client was Gillette Philippines, a 15-odd-year associate of McCann-Erickson, and the product was RUBIE Blade. When Ibañez took over the account, a popular campaign and a TV campaign starring the late comedian Vic Pacia were already airing. Client wanted to employ radio to encourage the men in downscale rural market to please shave.

“A lot of men out there were still using primitive implements to get rid of their bristles.” Ibañez explains. Such grooming innovations included two coins used as a makeshift tweezers or even splinters of wood. That is, if the gentleman ever bothered with his bristles at all.

Ibañez decided to utilize the popular jingle , which made a simple but very attractive promise, If you shaved with RUBIE, you would look good. “Ahit RUBIE, Ahit Pogi”—the eqution of the brand name with a Filipino slang for “handsome” was only of the cmpaign’s winning elements. Ibañez went a step further by pushing the satisfied user over the deep end; the hero becomes so handsome that, by the end of the commercial, he has a new problem altogether, “He becomes too good-looking for his own good.”

In “Harana”, only one of the several presentations of the delicious RUBIE dilemma, a fellow with the unsavory name of Tiagong Tuchang pays court to Kathleen, whose mother immediately puts the light out on the suitor because of his unshaven state. Calling him “tuchang” , a terribly coarse kind of bristle, is bad enough. “Yung hindi nag-aahit! Yung mukhang piña!”, the mother exclaims, and the listener goes to town figuring out how unbelievably fuzzy Tiago really looks.

RUBIE is presented as a resolution, and the playing of the jingle signifies that the hero has taken matters an razor into his own hands. He returns to Kathleen, who is so taken by the serenade (and the newly-trimmed serenade) that she asks for an encore. The crow of  rooster and a young man’s moan, “Josko, umaga na!” is the final twist and the hilarious revelation of just how many encores the now desirable Tiago was obliged to give.

Listeners began to await the next RUBIE Blade radio commercial like radio drama or comic installments, “The listener knew it was an exaggeration, because there was no attempt to present the situation as logical,” Ibañez recalls. Thus, they laughed heartily at the final turn of events, which, in subsequent versions, always had the hero ending up with more than he bargained for—as in a shotgun wedding, pehaps, or having more than one barrio lass demanding his attention.

From the distinguishing sound effects that set the ads apart from auditory clutter—a series of urgent knocks, or, in the case of “Harana”, the strum of a guitar---to the familiar characters and easily recognizable values, the RUBIE ads hit the Pinoy at his very heart. “They were indigenous and romantic,” Ibañez says. “The strength of the campaign was in fact that people recognized themselves in it.”

Enough to keep RUBIE Blade in the market for years to come.

CREDITS:
ADVERTISER: Gillette Philippines
PRODUCT: Rubie Blades
AGENCY: McCann-Erickson
ASSOCITE CREATIVE DIRECTOR: Bill Ibañez
PRODUCER: Baby Enriquez

SOURCES:
Article written by the late Butch Uy, forPerfect 10: A Decade of Creativity in Philippine Advertising, written by Butch Uy.Published by the Executive Committee of the Creative Guild of the Philippines. 1995, p. 66-67

Sunday, September 10, 2017

127. Brand Names That Became Everyday Pinoy Words #4: CUTEX


CUTEX AD, Detail from a ca. 1960 ad.

In the nail-painting craze of the 60s, the word CUTEX became a generic term for nail polish products. It became such a dominant name in the Philippine nail care market that all nail polishes were called “CUTEX”.  When someone asked, “What’s your Cutex brand?”, he or she  actually meant—“what is your nail polish brand?”.

The beginnings of CUTEX could be traced back to 1911 when the Northam Warren Co, of Connecticut developed its first ever nail care prouct-- a cuticle remover. 

Three years later, it created the first nail tints to color fingernails. Using pigments developed from automobile paints, the product evolved into the CUTEX Liquid Nail Polish. Prior to this, ladies prettified their nails using paste or powder tints. Other nail polish manufacturers would follow suit, and by 1925  virtually all nail polishes came in liquid forms.
 
CUTEX AD, ca. 1960
A major breakthrough happened in 1928 when CUTEX launched a nail polish remover with acetone as base ingredient. The product proved to be such a hit, so it was sold alongside CUTEX nail polishes.

CUTEX products became available in the Philippines in the 1930s, a decade that saw the introduction of new innovations—the gentler, nail conditioning “CUTEX Oily Polish Remover” , and a more opaque, glossier nail polish cream (1934). CUTEX Polish Foundation- the first nail treatment product that resulted in chip-free nails with longer-lasting finish—was introduced in 1938.
 
CUTEX MANICURE SET, pPrint Ad, Graphic magazine, 1936.

It is no wonder that CUTEX became the world’s best-selling nail care brand for many decades. The brand was highly advertised in beauty- conscious Philippines, and print ads regularly came out from the 1930s thru the 1980s. Its heyday was in the 1960s when the company was bought by Chesebrough Pond’s.
 
CHONA RECTO-KASTEN, for CUTEX. 1957
The CUTEX dominance was seriously threatened by a Japanese brand—Caronia, which invested heavily on TV advertising and made gains in the 1970s-80s. Eventually, CUTEX gave way to younger, newer brands. It remained available on store shelves, however, although it was not marketed as aggressively as Caronia and other fast-rising nail care brands, which led to its being viewed as a somewhat passé , with an old image.
 
PEARL CUTEX, 1955

It was only in 2010 that CUTEX marketing was restored and intensified once more,  mostly through digital and online platforms. This was after the product was acquired by Arch Equity Partners, in September 2010. 

CUTEX NAIL POLISH REMOVER AD, 1986.
Despite several transfers of ownerships and the changing landscape of the beauty business, CUTEX Nail Polishes continue to be an indispensable partner of today’s generation of Filipinas who want to nail their look right—from their fingers to their toes!!