Kelloggs Sucrilhos: When will kids be kids in our advertising?

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This campaign for Kelloggs Sucrilhos has been getting a lot of positive comments, over at Ads of the World. The attempt is to convey that it’s OK if our kids aren’t over achieving super heroes – the important thing is to be healthy.


In contrast, we rarely see advertising that portrays kids as kids, warts and all in our advertising. There are stereotypes galore: super achievers who excel in everything, saccharine sweet cuties or brats with attitude. No grey areas. I understand that moms love it if their kids do well and this ‘aspiration thing’ in advertising but should it always be about topping the class, being the sports champ and being the achcha bachcha? Unfailingly so. These Kelloggs ads maybe meant for sophisticated markets but I am sure all mums would also empathize with the message that is implied. The universal benefit of health is implied wrapped in a message that ‘it’s OK if kids have some quirks or failings’.

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  1. Maybe, growing up ensures that the kid within each of us, gets sufficiently thrashed?
    Never daring to speak anything, but adult-speak?
    Kids are precious in their curiosity, aren’t they?
    The corollary, of course, is that all mums have an infinite capacity for guilt.
    But, that is fodder for another post…

  2. Harshal, Charles – thanks for the comments. Oh yes, the Kelloggs ads are far from perfect/ideal. In other ads they show a dense, dim-witted kid sitting in a classroom full of kids who appear to be much younger to him. Those aren’t advertising imageries that one would look up to in this part of the world. But very few ads show ‘kids as kids’. The exception that comes to mind (can’t find the YouTube link) is an the MTR Instant Gulab Jamun ad where a mum makes the dish to celebrate the kid coming second in a race. Kid reveals later that there were only 2 kids in the race.

  3. Loved the campaign, as also the MTR one you narrated! Remember the Dhara one? Have also loved the stuff Surf Excel pulls off, in the context of expertly negotiating a kids worldview.

  4. Saw this at Sociological Images, and I’ll paste here the comment I’ve left there:

    First of all, these ads were never published here in Brazil. They seem to be “ghost” ads – those things that publicity folks do just for fun, or to exhibit in festivals.

    Now, the content. It’s a common saying in Portuguese, “o importante é ter saúde”. One says it as a kind of consolation to someone whose kids/parents/relatives are NOT normal. It is implied “all right, we know you are ashamed, and maybe even feeling guilty, but that’s not as bad as, say, cancer”.

    If those were real ads, there would be a strong reaction here.

    • Marcos, thanks for the comment. Oh yes, ‘ghost’ ads as you call them are common in this part of the world too. I am not surprised that the Kelloggs ads were scam – meant for award shows etc. The ‘common saying’ you mention has a totally different connotation than the positive spin in these ads.

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