Viva Advertising is a Dirty Job & Mike Rowe’s Parents Get to Do It

Viva Towels home page

Think advertising and paper towels and what’s the first thing to come to mind? “Bounty, the quicker picker upper,” right?

Kimberly-Clark’s Viva is trying to change that with it’s own advertising campaign featuring Dirty Jobs star (and Ford spokesman) Mike Rowe—and his parents.

The first round aired from Feb to May 2011. I don’t remember seeing any Mike Rowe Viva commercials at that time. But I did just see their latest ad. In case you missed it, watch this video:

Real-life relatives don’t always make for great TV, but Mike Rowe’s parents are cute as can be. His mother even seems, at times, like she’s not on script.

Watch their first commercial here:

Everyone talks about authenticity in advertising, especially in the age of social media. And Viva found a fantastic way to be authentic.

Mike Rowe is a very charming spokesman and his Dirty Jobs gig makes him perfect for this role. Viva struck gold with being able to include Rowe’s parents too. Whose mother didn’t chase after them as they tracked dirt through the house?

Two words come to mind—relatable and likeable.

You can’t help but smile as you watch these ads. And because they used his real parents rather than actors, you’re more likely to believe the paper towel worked on the grill instead of believing Bounty’s claims.

Seems like Viva is coming up with its own ABCs of advertising—Authenticity, Believability and Charm.

It’s funny, Bounty ditched their “quicker picker-upper” line for their new “Bring it,” call to action, and Viva seems to be doing just that.



  1. twoonlychildren · October 6, 2011

    Totally stoked to find your site. Thanks.

  2. Hyoc Riddle · February 10, 2013

    I swear to god until recently I thought Mike Rowe was advertising for Bounty O.o Hahahaha looks like their marketing ploy failed horrible, at least on me.

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