A good company mascot doesn't have to be perfect -- it doesn't even really need to be associated in any way with the actual product. After all, we have tigers and deranged old sea captains peddling children's cereal, so as long as you don't have somebody named "Oren C. Thirstrapist" trying to sell people Kool-Aid, you're probably going to be fine.
And even if your idea is terrible, chances are there will be one or two people around the agency who see the folly of your creation. A commercial has to pass before several sets of eyes before it even gets filmed, let alone before it makes it to television. This is why GE's new ad for its hospital equipment is so confounding.
Are they selling euthanasia?
The minute-long spot features Hugo Weaving, reprising his most famous non-elf role as the menacing Agent Smith from The Matrix, lurking through a hospital like he's scouting for potential ransoms and explaining the exciting new technology General Electric has been developing. It's part of GE's "Brilliant Machines" campaign, which showcases a bunch of famous robots from pop culture all convening on GE Headquarters to help them build the future of automated technology, and for some inexplicable reason they decided to center their commercial about networked hospital machines around one of the most evil characters in the history of science fiction.
To their credit, this was actually way more entertaining than The Matrix Revolutions.