Gets a Personality

Talking Plants Star in McGarrah/Jessee’s Second TV Campaign
DALLAS–McGarrah/Jessee has launched its second campaign for with six new television spots featuring talking plants.
The humorous TV spots depict actors dressed as flowers, fruits and vegetables, sitting on an oversized stool and discussing their relative merits. “I’m low maintenance,” squawks the flashy “Bloomfield Dainty Rose” in a New York accent. The “Bartlett Pear,” a stem atop his head, seductively implores the viewer to “run away with me.” The “Mona Lisa Tulip” simply refuses to smile.
The commercials, which broke last week, will air nationally on network television and cable offerings such as HGTV, Food TV and CNN’s Headline News.
An accompanying print campaign will appear in national magazines including Better Homes and Gardens, House and Garden, Southern Living and Country Living. The print work features taglines such as “If you’ve got the money, we’ve got the thyme” and “If we don’t have your plant, it’s probably illegal.”
The campaign is the second for McGarrah/Jessee since the Austin, Texas, agency began working with the online client in 1998.
“Our first campaign introduced and focused on introducing the whole concept of being able to garden online,” said agency partner Mark McGarrah. “What you see us doing now is starting to evolve that into a clearer company personality and show the variety of products you can get.”
That variety is huge, ranging from the tiniest seeds to a seven-foot Christmas tree, delivered via Federal Express with a stand attached. The Austin-based company, founded in 1995, operates three Web sites:, and
The television spots broke one week after McGarrah/Jessee client Netpliance shifted its advertising business to BBDO in New York. McGarrah/Jessee had introduced the client in an inaugural Super Bowl TV commercial depicting people wearing “nerd” glasses held together with tape. The tagline: “Everyone can become a Web-head.”
McGarrah said response to that commercial was positive and encouraged Netpliance to hire senior marketing manager Bill Cobb, formerly of Pizza Hut. Cobb then chose to shift the business to Pizza Hut agency BBDO. K