Last night Groupon aired three commercials (see below) during the Super Bowl, and quickly managed to offend viewers everywhere. While the majority of the outrage was focused on the Tibet ad, all three commercials could easily be deemed offensive by certain groups of people.
Quite simply, the commercials were done in poor taste. But what’s more upsetting is that Groupon is better than that, and they didn’t need to go this route. Let’s look at the facts:
- Groupon turned down a $6 billion acquisition offer from Google.
- Groupon is preparing for an I.P.O. at a $15 billion valuation.
- Groupon is an awesome service with amazing deals.
So why, must a company with so much success in their young history, risk offending their customers through these commercials? To me, a company like Groupon – tech-savvy and innovative – should have had the best commercials. But these ads weren’t funny, and the only talk they generated was negative.
With LivingSocial on their heals and putting up a big fight (partially thanks to Amazon’s investment), Groupon needs to focus on keeping their customer base happy and growing. Last night was a step in the wrong direction.