Dr Mumbo

Louie the Fly – back from the grave before you know it

Dr Mumbo salutes Mortein for appearing to adopt the Heinz Salad Cream strategy over the weekend.

For those unfamiliar, it’s an approach taken by brands that claim iconic status but don’t shift many units.  

Heinz Salad Cream did it successfully more than a decade ago. So loud was the outcry – or rather, free PR – that the brains behind the strategy was named marketer of the year in the UK.

And it looks to Dr Mumbo like the same’s in store for Louie The Fly, the face of Mortein for more than half a century.

The Sun-Herald reports that Louie will be killed off for good in its next ad.

The good folk of Mortein will hopefully forgive Dr Mumbo for his cynicism when he fully expects Louie to be saved “by popular demand”.

Expect the Facebook campaign to save him to start any moment…. now.

9.37am update:

Ping! a press release arrives…

Sydney, Australia, 12 September 2011 – Pest control household brand Mortein has announced it is killing off its mascot of over 50 years, Louie The Fly. While Louie has done his job pestering the homes of Aussies of all ages through our TVs and newspapers, Mortein believes that Louie the Fly no longer represents what the brand stands for: a range of pest control products that are innovative and advanced.

Heading up the longest continuously running campaign in television history and one of the most-loved icons, Louie The Fly is a household name that was created in Australia in 1957 by writer and cartoonist Geoff Morgan Pike, and in the same year the famous ‘Louie The Fly’ jingle was written by renowned Australian author Bryce Courtenay. At one point Louie even had his own regular spin-off cartoon strip in an Australian newspaper.

Chris Tedesco, Marketing Director at Reckitt Benckiser, owner of Mortein, said, “It was a hard decision, but Mortein has decided to kill off Louie The Fly once and for all. Mortein has advanced throughout the years and we believe it’s time our face did as well. Mortein now kills cockroaches, spiders, mosquitoes, ants, silverfish and many more pests. In fact, Mortein is not just about killing a bigger range of bugs, but has continued to innovate beyond fly sprays and we feel Louie can no longer showcase the advancements of the complete Mortein range.”

Actor Ross Higgins, who has provided the distinctive voice of Louie since the 1950s, said, “Nothing ever lasts forever; it is a sad farewell to an iconic and loveable character. I guess Louie just finally ran out of lives but he can be proud of a very good innings.”

Over 90% of Australians recognise Louie and know the ‘Louie the Fly’ jingle. To enable consumers to stay connected to Louie, Mortein has created a Louie the Fly Facebook page – www.louiethefly.com.au.

The new adverts for the upcoming pest season are planned to focus on the high-tech nature of Mortein products.


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