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What more could a mum possible want? (Image: Tina Tiller)
What more could a mum possible want? (Image: Tina Tiller)

SocietyMay 11, 2024

The Steve Awards 2024: Honouring the year’s worst Mother’s Day marketing

What more could a mum possible want? (Image: Tina Tiller)
What more could a mum possible want? (Image: Tina Tiller)

Out of gift ideas for mum? You can’t go wrong with a bottle of toilet cleaner and a new squeegee.

Emily Writes is the writer and editor of Emily Writes Weekly.

This week marks five years since I published a post on The Spinoff about Mother’s Day marketing titled ‘A leaked transcript from the Farmers Mother’s Day catalogue planning meeting’.

Since then, I’ve had the immeasurable joy of having people yell out SHAVE HER, WEIGH HER, BRUSH HER TEETH at me in bars, at events, and even once in a supermarket. Every year since, readers of the Emily Writes Weekly have sent me diabolical Mother’s Day marketing. Together, we have had an annual ‘Steve Awards’ for appalling Mother’s Day marketing.

Today I present to you the best of the worst of 2024 Mother’s Day. I’ll leave it to you to crown your own winner.

Steve from PB Tech

It was a promising start from Steve with a ‘WELOVEMUM’ promo code to use but things quickly went down hill with the tagline: Gift ideas for the mum who loves health and personal care.

I know what you’re thinking: What mum does not love “health and personal care”? But a quick look at the ‘gifts’ selected might make you think again.

We are very squarely in the SHAVE HER, WEIGH HER, BRUSH HER TEETH territory here with the first gift on offer being a facial hair remover and the third being a Beurer Bluetooth body fat scale with large LCD display, Weight capacity: 180 kg , Weight, body fat, body water, muscle percentage, bone mass, AMR/BMR calorie display, with BMI calculation.

Steve from TSB Living

Oh Steve, it’s almost a beautiful haiku –

Celebrate the Wonderful Woman who gave you Life

with our Mother’s Day sale!

Sadly, the advertised Mother’s Day gift is a treadmill because your mum is a heifer. No I’m kidding! She’s not! She is an AI copy of the Briscoes Lady and a treadmill is coming out of her chin! Get her surgery, not a bloody treadmill!

The money tongue emoji is slightly manic, no?

Steve from Mighty Ape

Come on. I mean, you just can’t get your mum a toilet seat for Mother’s Day. Even if she’s the worst mum in the world. Even if she needs a toilet seat. Even if it’s a fancy one with….buttons?!? Just no. But also, does the seat warm up? Because that is kind of cool.

Steve from Spotlight

Imagine you bought a beautiful pair of Italian leather boots. Now imagine your child bedazzling them and giving them back to you for Mother’s Day. Thanks Steve.

I love some piece of shit handmade present as much as the next mum, but if you touch my shoes then you’re going to live with Nana… forever.

Briscoes Steve

Someone behind the camera is maybe threatening the Briscoes Lady and that’s why she’s doing this video. It’s clearly under duress. Because getting your mother a towel for Mother’s Day is bizarre and frankly a crime of some kind. I don’t know what law it would fall under, but I feel confident that it’s definitely illegal.

Steve, let her go. And stop making her wear a wig over her real hair.

Bunnings Steve

Oh where to start….

This one was sent in by a reader who said her friend’s Bunnings display included 2kg of Surf laundry powder. We can’t verify that one but goodness, this is bleak. Magic cleaning paste? Toilet cleaner? GIANT SWISS PANSY FLOWER (OK, that’s fine but the rest just isn’t).

Pak’nSave Westgate Steve

Mum, I love you. But it’s important that you know that you have a lot of unwanted body hair and I need you to be a smooth as a dolphin OK? Just completely hairless.

Glassguard Steve – our 2024 Steve Award winner

Make Mother’s Day SPECIAL with Thoughtful Gifts for a Clean and Safe Home! This year, why not surprise your Mum with a gift that not only shows your appreciation but also REMOVES MOULD. Yes, it’s the dream of every exhausted mother: a MOULD REMOVER & PROTECT KIT.

Not quite right for the woman who literally gave you life? Well, give her the GLASS STAIN & MOULD REMOVER KIT. It’s described as “For Mums who value a crystal-clear view”. It also “saves her valuable time spent on scrubbing”.

Steve is on fire truly as he suggests we give her “the gift of pristine windows without the effort”. No honestly, he’s on fire. I can see a woman rushing away with a mop.

Someone has put him out and he’s yelling something… oh it’s “Give your Mum the gift of a cleaner and more hygienic bathroom with Bath & Toilet Nanocoat”. Tell your mum you love her by talking about how her gift results in 95% fewer shit stains on her pristine toilet. That’s love.

You’re right, that squeegee is a stunning colour.


Honorary Steve shoutouts

Steve from Philips 

I will throw Philips a bone because they literally don’t sell anything except razors. But honestly, just stop trying to shave us and brush our teeth. It’s freaking us all out.

Steve from Pink Tools

A hard one because I hate the pinkification of Mother’s Day but I would also like pink tools?! But this got sent to me many times so a lot of women think Steve is a Pink Tool.

Steve from New World Centre City

Because I do love a whimsical sausage, I can’t lie. And I would laugh if I saw a LIMITED-EDITION HEART-SHAPED SAUSAGES sign – and we all need a good laugh right?

Happy Mother’s Day to all the mums. You deserve the world.

Keep going!