As Father’s Day 2016 approaches, and we survey how the image of fathers has evolved in the hands of the myriad brands partnering with us, it’s hard to find a better microcosm of the trajectory than the rise of our friend and Dad 2.0 alumnus Doyin Richards (below, far left):
For the uninitiated: Less than three years ago, Doyin was just a stay-at-home dad starting four weeks of paternity leave with his young daughters, Reiko and Emiko. One morning, he posted this photo for the benefit of his wife, just to show that their girls were in capable hands. And within weeks, he was a media darling, appearing on talk shows and news pieces and somewhat perplexed over the fuss being made over what he thought was a mundane morning routine.
And now, if you have any sort of electronic device that transmits televisual images, you’ve likely seen Doyin fronting the new Windows 10 campaign, using Microsoft gadgetry to help manage his busy, daughter-dominated life.
We’re really happy to see Doyin’s star rise so rapidly, but we’re happier still about the message this ad, put forth by a household-name tech giant with the third-highest market cap on the planet. Tropes long associated with the unskilled, uninterested father are long gone, in favor of a dad who likes his role and acknowledges that it’s not always easy.
Doyin’s new status as a speaker and author is a cogent reminder of the opportunities currently afforded to online dads. And the way Microsoft handles him in its new spot encourages all of us that brands are catching on to the types of messages the modern dad will appreciate.