All inclusive?

When diversity goes wrong.

I love a good advertising strapline. And let’s face it, there aren’t just one or two decent ones out there, down the years we’ve been exposed to some true greats. From “Beanz Meanz Heinz”, to “Just Do It”. “Because You’re Worth It”, to “Finger Lickin’ Good”.

But I’m afraid Tesco’s decision to amalgamate “However You Do Christmas” with “Everyone’s Welcome”, just makes Mrs G and I want to hurl the TV at the tree every time we see or hear it.

Now before you ask - yes, I’m very much aware of their highly commendable company policies. The corporate website announces: “Everyone Is Welcome At Tesco is our way of letting colleagues and customers know that we take equality, diversity and inclusion seriously. It means that whoever you are, wherever you work and whatever you do, we want you to FEEL welcome too.”

However, in the final mad dash to the finish line, it appears even after all this time no-one has actually realised that in context, when adopted as an advertising slogan, it’s just plain daft.

Even putting to one side last year’s own-goal concerning the portrayal of Muslim families in some of the advertising, but with the stores failing to stock Halal produce. Taken at face value, “Everyone’s Welcome” just dumps Tesco unceremoniously into possibly the single most populous category of advertiser to be found anywhere in the known universe. Namely, that of being a business which ‘welcomes you’. 

Because I’m welcome at my local petrol station (ironically a Morrisons outlet) I’m welcome at Barry’s Stores – our corner shop. We’re always very welcome, whichever Premier Inn we stay at. And worse still for Tesco, I’m extremely welcome indeed at our local branch of Lidl, where I’m on first name terms with many of the staff. You get the picture. Furthermore, I not only expect to be welcome at all of these outlets, but at any business I may care to set foot in.

So what are we to believe Tesco have been trying to insinuate all this time? That I might get unceremoniously strip-searched on the way into Asda? That Mrs G could be spat at by the check-out staff in Sainsburys? Or, perhaps we’re supposed to imagine that we may find burly bouncers on the door at Iceland?

I’m sorry, but no matter which way I look at it, I can’t help but surmise that this slogan - when aimed at the consumer, is just one of the dumbest ever conceived.

And for that Tesco, I’m afraid… “You’re welcome”.

What do you think of their latest Christmas ad? Is there another ad that stands out for you?

Mark Gregory