stupid rubber Yoda thing is a suitable name in that it describes the company in question’s current advertising strategy. It wasn’t five minutes ago that they’d ditched the cheap and cheesy approach and as Robin previously noted, settled on friendliness, reliability and ease as the key values they were attempting to get across.

ling (and clever) rival campaign from, which stars an amusing Russian meerkat called Alexandr, a rushed new advert from has been cobbled together starring a disgusting rubber thing called Confucius. (I’m assuming this name is a stab at a pun on the word “Confused” but who’s to say.)

It’s becoming obvious that is a fundamentally rubbish name for a mature price comparison website. It certainly seems like they’re struggling with anything approaching a coherent brand identity and are lumbering from one daft idea to the next as they attempt to escape the tedious “bloke pulling his hair out” motif of yesteryear.

As to the content of the advert, you’ll notice Confucius can barely move his mouth and is thus perhaps not the ideal brand ambassador. He looks in pain and isn’t funny. They’ve got him reading a magazine called What PowerBoat, presumably to convey some kind of wackiness. And his way of speaking sounds like someone doing a really poor Yoda impression.

All in all, not entirely a success. – friendlyeasywelcoming

There comes a time in every thrusting new internet start-up’s life when it has do ditch its desperate, cheap, attention-grabbing campaign and rebrand itself as warm, cosy, non-threatening and decidedly middle-class.

This means that its ads go from the television equivalent of someone slamming a can of tizer in your face before spraying its contents into your eyes, to a cup of unpleasantly milky and sugary tea – not as immediately annoying but guaranteed to have you feeling decidedly queasy after a time.

This brings me to’s new friendlyeasywelcoming adverts, which evince a definite effort to position the company as a non-threatening mainstream brand.

This means lots of normal-looking people talking about how friendlyeasywelcoming the new site is, as if anyone really looks at a website and bases their judgement on its quality by how ‘friendly’ it looks. The BBC has a long way to go by this standard.

“Oh, it’s recording!” is how things kick off, with a young man with an emo haircut feigning surprise that his camcorder is working. This, apparently, is AmazingPhil. AmazingPhil has a successful Youtube channel where he talks about his life.

This means that there isn’t really any attempt on the part of to pretend that these are actual customers. Phil bookends the advert by the drawing a smiley face on his hand and making a ‘ta-da’ noise. He may not be a complete prick, but that’s certainly the impression given by the advert.

Elsewhere in the ad a variety of target demographics repeat words discovered by a focus group to be important to people searching for car insurance comparison sites on the internet, hence friendlyeasywelcoming. The overall effect is like drowning in Horlicks. Tellingly has disabled ratings on its Youtube video.

Unfortunately while, and have all gone for the same approach, has thrown a massive spanner into the works by creating a campaign that is both funny and memorable in their ads, blowing the others out of the water. has immediately responded with an unfunny new advert featuring a small blob of rubber called Confucius. It’s a weak comeback when faced with Aleksandr the Meerkat, but it doesn’t make me want to kill AmazingPhil.