Nothing about the “Mayhem” commercials makes me want to get All State insurance.
The series is dark and uses shocking images without presenting a solution to the illustrated problem. It’s a far cry from the “Good Hands” campaign led by Dennis Haysbert, who portrayed All State as a company with stability and shared common values.
Why “Mayhem” doesn’t work:
1. Dean Winters is a little too convincing as a borderline psychotic guy.
2. The screeching sound of a key against a car is unbearable to most human ears.
3. Seeing a man get hit by a car, with his body flying through the air like a rag doll, causes an unexpected visceral reaction.
All of the above would be fine if the ads somehow presented an alternative ending, so viewers can imagine what life could be like with All State.
Instead, the commercials show Mayhem causing trouble but never getting punished. The narration is saying that All State protects you, but the visual images say that Mayhem wins, and you lose.
If you present a problem, show how your product/service solves it. Make sure that verbal and visual messages are aligned.