This is the latest ad for Nestlé's baby formula SMA. It's still pretty hard for Nestlé to do much right around the baby formula market after decades of Nestlé boycotts. You can then see from the tweets alongside this post that there have also been shouts that the ad is sexist, showing only mothers raising the kids and also that the executive board of Nestlé does not really represent mothers. (I checked this out - only 1 of the 13 executive board members is a woman! Pretty poor effort...)

So lots of criticism coming from all angles. However, I watched the ad the other night with my wife and mother of our 3 kids and she absolutely loved the ad. She laughed aloud while watching it as she could clearly relate to what was going on throughout the mothers' days. "It's funny because it's true" as Homer would say (Simpson that is, not the Greek chap who wrote the Iliad).

So, in a slightly annoying marketing way, I asked her that as she liked the ad so much, would she now be buying SMA milk formula for our youngest kid? She replied that she wouldn't, so I asked why. It was not due to the Nestlé boycott nor the fact that their is only one woman on the executive board. Instead, it was down to packaging. She said it looked old and outdated and not as "serious" as the Aptamil packaging - the formula that we buy and have bought for all of our kids. She said that the packaging of Aptamil gives the sense of a better, more reliable and trustworthy product for babies. That is obviously extremely important when it comes to the purchasing decision of any product a parent is buying their kids, particularity around nutrition.

I think this really shows how important packaging can be (and how unimportant TV advertising can be - but that's a post for another day) when it comes to making purchasing decisions and that marketers need to take it very seriously. The SMA tin is made of metal with little ripples around it, a flimsy plastic lid, a bit of an "eighties look" to it and bright colours for the logo. The Aptamil container in comparison, is made of card with a much more understated logo, "less garish" and an almost clinical look.

Nestlé might never be able to rectify what has happened over the boycotts and it will probably take a long time for some men in suits to invite more woman into their boardroom - but maybe their is an opportunity for them to improve their packaging so that more of the next generation of mothers AND fathers might make SMA their baby formula of choice.