Admit it. You've been able to think of nothing else since learning that ABC has whacked All My Children and One Life to Live, two soaps that have been airing since roughly around the Precambrian Era. Well, one major sponsor isn't accepting the news without a fight: Hoover, a company that knows from things that suck, is pulling all advertising from the network in protest.
But why should a vacuum cleaner manufacturer care so passionately about the fate of Erica Kane? The answer lies with one man: Brian Kirkendall, the company's Vice President of Marketing, and a lifelong fan of the daytime dramas he's watched since childhood with his mom. The idea for the boycott came after he saw how heartbroken she was about the news:
He was visiting his mother, a soap fan, in the hospital at the time. "She's like, 'When you were a baby,'" he said. "'You used to sit beside me and we'd watch them together. You were kind of raised watching those shows...What am I going to do without the Buchanans?'"
Kirkendall then did what any reasonable corporate executive with a profound emotional attachment to his stories and mother would do: He wrote a letter on Hoover's corporate Facebook page declaring an advertising boycott until ABC reinstates both shows:
My wife and mother are both passionate viewers of All My Children and One Life to Live, as are many of my colleagues here at Hoover...[W]e will discontinue our advertising with ABC this Friday, 4/22. We're making every attempt to pull our spots from these programs sooner.
Wait a second — is a marketing guy even allowed to do that? I've heard of companies pulling their ads over controversial content, and I've heard of audiences boycotting sponsors over content. But I've never heard of a company pulling their ads over a complete absence of content. I guess that makes this gesture somewhat significant, if entirely ridiculous? Or perhaps Kirkendall is a lot smarter at the marketing game than I'm giving him credit for. The name Hoover is on everyone's lips, after all, and angry housewives across the country are anointing him as their personal soap opera savior. [Newsnet 5, Facebook, photo via ABC.com]