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Tom Bodett

July 6th, 2010 at 08:30 am

Ever heard of the Motel 6 ad, where they were joking about how Motel 6 was frugal before the new frugal became chic or something like that? I wish I could find a transcript of that ad because it was pretty humorous, but those of you who have heard it should know what I'm talking about.

In any case, it got me wondering about who this Tom Bodett guy is, and how they came up with the slogan, "We'll leave the light on for you." According to his funny autobiography, he ad-libbed it on the first recording session! I guess, sometimes, brilliance is chanced upon.

Or is it chance at all? What if it simply struck a chord through simplicity and sincerity?

I must say that I love the Motel 6 ads. Understand that, unlike something like the Ritz Carlton, Motel 6 is an economy motel chain. As such, their product, as well as their marketing pitch should be and is a simple one: Clean rooms and good price. But you know what? That's all I ask for in a motel stay anyways. And these Motel 6 ads come across as very down-to-earth and sincere about such a promise. Real life experiences may vary of course.

I suppose the takeaway lesson here is that, sometimes, simple and sincere may be the best way to go, including matters of business. That and the more things change, the more some things seem to stay the same. And when it comes to certain values such as frugality, that's not really a bad thing at all.

11 Responses to “Tom Bodett”

  1. rob62521 Says:

    I remember those commercials! And if you are traveling, chances are you aren't spending a whole lot of time in the room...just resting and bathing. Why pay for big fancy stuff?

  2. Ima saver Says:

    Those commercials are still playing today. However, I stayed at a motel 6 once, and I wasn't very happy with the room.

  3. MonkeyMama Says:

    Good post!

    Never seen the commercials (I don't recall), but LOVE Motel 6. Big Grin

  4. Joan.of.the.Arch Says:

    I've stayed at Motel 6 many times, in many places. They have been variable as to the cleanliness. But I find that is true at other motels--unpredictable.

  5. frugaltexan75 Says:

    My mom equates Motel 6 to her idea of "roughing it". Smile I've never really been able to see what the big deal is about the higher priced motels and hotels. No matter where you end up, you have a bed, a closet and a bathroom. I suppose if you were going to be there for more than a few days, a few other amenities would be nice ...

    I haven't heard the commercials for Motel 6 in a long time, but I do remember the ones you are talking about. Smile

  6. HouseHopeful Says:

    I totally have his voice in my head "We'll leave the light on". THey are good commercials Smile

  7. creditcardfree Says:

    Most of those commercials are on the radio, right? I like them. And simple is often better!

  8. scfr Says:

    We stayed at Motel 6's every night during our move from Seattle to Texas. Our dog could stay in our room for free, the prices were very reasonable, the locations were convenient (right off the major freeways that we were driving), and the rooms were clean enough. All we wanted was a clean place to sleep and take a shower. At the time they offered a discount off of their already low prices if you booked on-line.

  9. ceejay74 Says:

    For me it depends on the rest of the vacation, and where I want to spend my money. On our last trip to England, the expensive plane tickets, need for a rental car, and wish to eat out and buy lots of souvenirs made us choose a very cheap hotel that was a bit out-of-the-way. We were totally fine with that. This past vacation to Virginia, our main expenses were plane tickets and food, and we knew we'd want a one-night detox from 8 days of family time and cramped, messy accommodations with family. So on this occasion, it was completely worth it to us to spend several hundred dollars on a luxury suite, even though we were only in it for a little over 12 hours. Even now that I've paid the bill, I still say it was worth it! Smile

  10. My English Castle Says:

    I'm with ceejay on this one. I have a weakness for nice hotels, but I'm never willingly to pay a lot for them. On our recent Boston trip our friends stayed at the lovely Park Plaza for over $200/night. We got a hotwire deal on the Sheraton for $80/night, and even though we booked through hotwire, we're Sheraton members and they comped a breakfast for us. We got a fabulous hotel with a pool for DD and a free breakfast for less than half of what they paid.

    I find priceline and hotwire invaluable, though not always the best deals. There's also a great site called betterbidding.com that lets you "almost" positively ID the hotwire and priceline hotels. We've stayed at the Sofitel (sometimes with free fab French breakfasts) for $70. I'm a hotel freak though--which is why England is sometimes so hard for me. The deals and the hotel quality are just not as consistent as they are in the US. Some are beautiful, but some are just plain awful and expensive.

  11. baselle Says:

    I like the basics in a hotel room - clean sheets, clean bathroom, firm mattress, air conditioning, comedy central Big Grin. After that, who cares? As I always say, most of the time my eyes are closed in the hotel room anyway.

    However I did get pinkeye once in my youth from a much too cheap hotel room. Must have put my closed eyes too close to a pool of invisible filth. You can go too low.

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