Advertisements are one of the key points that companies use in order to sell their products. It is one of the most effective ways to let the public know about and get the hang of the products you have manufactured. So if an ad goes wrong, it could have a heavy impact on the brand and its sales. Here are some of the most absurd ads that have come out in the 21st century that will make you question the company’s moral and ethical conduct.

Mickey Mouse’s Mistake

marketing fails, alice tweet, disney japan

Alice is seen here with the caption ‘A very merry unbirthday to you!’ that seems like a very cute Twitter post. However, this is not sweet at all with regards to Japan on the anniversary of the Nagasaki bombings. The caption also roughly translates to ‘Congrats on a trifling day.’ Disney Japan obviously releases an apology tweet because of this horrible tweet.

The Dove Campaign


There was one ad that Dove putout involving a black woman turning into a white woman who then turned into a Middle Eastern woman. American makeup artist Naomi Blake was extremely upset with this ad saying, “the tone-deafness in these companies makes no sense”. In the end, Dove had to release an apology statement saying, “An image we recently posted on Facebook missed the mark in representing women of color thoughtfully. We deeply regret the offense it caused.”

Victoria’s Secret Perfect Body Ad

victorias secret perfect body woke ad campaign
The famous lingerie company Victoria’s Secret tried to pass off as an inclusive brand that catered to all types of body shapes. However, the ad showed models having the same height, weight, and shape. The inclusivity was not there to be seen at all. The ad had a lot of backlashes where people criticized the brand for being a hypocrite. Do you agree?

PETA Fat-Shamed Non-Vegetarians

PETA Fat-Shamed Non-Vegetarians

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) had kept some billboards in Jacksonville, Florida, in 2009 with the words “Save The Whales, Lose The Blubber: Go Vegetarian.” The ad had multiple complaints and soon the organization left a reply. “Gone: Just like all the pounds lost by people who go vegetarian.” PETA founder Ingrid Newkirk said as she defended the advertisement: “America’s obesity epidemic calls for tough love…not more coddling and mock shock over a billboard.”

Budweiser And Date Rape?


Remember that one Bud Light slogan that had reference to rape. The ad claims beer is for a ‘certain type’ of a woman who does not care about anything that happens to her. The brand further went on Twitter to market a campaign with the title #UpforWhatever. This should have never been a go in the first place. The consequences that they faced later could have been fathomed.

Athletic Immigrants Welcome Ad

paddy power, marketing fails, ad on lorry

The marketing team at Paddy Power decided that it would be wise to have British athletes born overseas on their ads with the slogan ‘Immigrants, jump in the back (but only if you’re good at sport).’ It was during an immigration crisis the country was facing. This company has had a few unethical ads but this one clearly crossed the line with its mockery.