Back in just a bit…

I’m at a work conference in Kyoto and they have us running for one fun activity to another…this explains the lack of posts. More to come soon, including a post of scam ads and one on the answer to great work (I found it!)

Martin

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Ad of the Day – May 25 (San Francisco)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

Today’s pick:

Why I like it: Just great. I’m helpless in the face of such overwhelming charm! Amazing acting by the girl (her expression as she’s driven off is priceless), great humor, nice insight, just completely enjoyable. It’s an ad that I would perk up to see the second time around, an ad that I would share with others – and for a car ad, that’s pretty rare. Now here is the interesting part: Did you notice that the car is barely there? When it does come in late into the commercial the payoff is credible, it makes sense, it ties together, and they have a very sexy shot of the car driving away, looking all the sleeker because you’re already wired to think it’s some sort of advanced spaceship. But really, the narrative that brings you in doesn’t even feature it. And yet the car/brand payoff is so strong. Think of VW “The Force”…exactly the same principle at play. Now think of a standard car ad with the car making tight turns on a hilly mountainside at dusk…you can’t, because it’s so mediocre that it’s completely forgettable. There’s a lesson to be learned here, isn’t there?

Ad of the Day – May 24 (Sao Paulo)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: Almap BBDO
  • Location: Sao Paulo
  • Client: Getty Images
  • Name: “From love to bingo in 873 images”

Why I like it: The good: “A good story, well told”, is one of the simplest attempts at defining good advertising. Well, this one fits the bill: a lovely, fully textured story told in a very unique, arresting, lovingly crafted, almost incredible-that-they-made-it-work manner. Best of all, it so clearly illustrates the product/brand benefit! This is a great example of the theory that great creativity lowers your mental filters and opens your mind to receiving a marketing message. And major extra points for giving this the flair of being “from love to bingo”…a mediocre approach would have been a generic “from birth to death”, or “from first sight to last kiss”, etc.  Simply superb, and honestly Almap BBDO has us used to this by now! Now…the bad: I really hesitated in including this truly fantastic ad… Why? I’m so sorry, but this sets off my “Scamocity scale” in a big way. I suspect it’s what I call a “Mother Teresa” scam, whereby flower shops, dog pounds, abuse shelters, and yes even stock photo companies around the world are gifted these fantastic ideas (and even finished executions) by top creative shops. Does it diminish the end result? You decide… but look for a post on this topic very soon!

Ad of the Day – May 23 (Santiago)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: Lowe Porta
  • Location: Santiago, Chile
  • Client: Cristal (beer)
  • Name: “Salgamos Jugando” (a soccer expression meaning something like “let’s control the ball”)

Why I like it: If you are a fan of soccer/footbal/futbol/futebol, you don’t like this ad, you love this ad. It is filled with little visual “easter eggs” that keep popping out each time you view the tvc (the first time you’ll miss some of it, so watch it again!) This ad, made to announce Cristal’s sponsorship of the Chilean national team, captures a lot of the visual cliches of soccer and applies them to the popular “buddies-in-a-bar” setup, with hilarious effects. Really well done…one of those that make you laugh “because it’s so true!”.

Now…a whole separate paragraph is needed so we can have a conversation about the music. The song makes the ad, from second 1 onwards. No matter how good the rest of it is (and it is quite good!) the track is easily 60% of the awesomeness. Why then don’t we pay even more attention to music in the creative development process? Music is such a  powerful shortcut to the emotions, yet so often the track is treated as something that is added on at the end, perhaps even by the production house/director. Are we under-using a tremendously powerful tool? I think so. Let’s push harder, people. I can imagine the account guy or the client saying “…are you crazy? ‘We are the Champions’ must be incredibly expensive! Can’t we just compose something with a similar feel?” The fact that it came out like this shows that someone along the line had the courage to aim high, and it shows in the result. Congratulations to the folks at Lowe Porta for the very first Ad of the Day from Chile!

PS – I’ve written before about the off absence of jingles in today’s advertising, Click here if you missed it.

Ad of the day – May 22 (Sao Paulo)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: Ogilvy
  • Location: Sao Paulo
  • Client: Sprite
  • Name: “Sprite shower”

Why I like it: A famous rock band might perform in front of just a few guests in a studio, but what matters is that millions will see the tv broadcast. In the same way, these types of “events” are staged less for the impact of those participating, but for the spill-over effect on the web, where videos have a chance at any given moment to “go viral” (not to mention in awards shows, where these videos are the actual submission). I liked this one a lot because it was intimately connected with the refreshment promise of Sprite, and it was executed very well with the giant dispenser machine creating an irresistible draw. More importantly, based on what I said earlier about spreading the word online, notice that today there is one more frontier in execution: it’s not just about executing the event…it’s about executing the video about the event! In this case, everything from the refreshment, to the joy, to the sensuality was perfectly captured into an appealing 1 minute package that is actually better than the event itself! We should all take note, because this is what the smart agencies and clients are focusing on in order to develop their creative chops and gain accolades along the way. Parabens, amigos!

Ad of the Day – May 21 (Milan)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: 1861 United
  • Location: Milan
  • Client: IKEA
  • Name: “Toilet”

Why I like it: Ah, yes. this is what happens when an agency doesn’t settle for executing the brief, but goes further. In this case, the flipped things on their head and instead of “bringing the people into the store, they brought the store to the people”. It might seem like a nice stunt, but it was done during Italy’s most important design expo. The people at the expo are exactly the type of influencers that take a small, inexpensive “stunt” like this one and amplify it to make the brand talked about and famous. Great thinking, and superb execution from a small Milan agency which we had previously featured for another (more conventional) ad for IKEA. This one has awards in its future – Bravo!

Ad of the Day – May 18 (Sao Paulo)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

   

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: Lew’Lara\TBWA
  • Location: Sao Paulo
  • Client: Aruba Tourism Bureau
  • Name: “One Happy Island”

Why I like it: Ha! I just found this charming and pretty hilarious. It’s tricky territory to use God in your advertising, but in this context I think it just…works. I mean, the image of God texting while creating vs God fully focused, that’s killer. Yes the crystal clear water is a bit of a convention for these Caribbean tourism ads…but everything else is different and refreshing. Nice work to end the week in a groovy way!

Ad of the Day – May 17 (Paris)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: Publicis Conseil
  • Location: Paris
  • Client: PMU (a sports betting service)
  • Name: “Millionaire Renovations”

Why I like it: (click on image to read more information on it) We don’t feature very many outdoor examples on Ad of the Day, and perhaps it’s because this is one of the mediums between “potential” and “normal example”. Ah, but when done right OOH tightly binds together an idea, with a location and through proper execution it leads not to background noise, but to actual engagement: it makes you think, laugh, act, etc. In this case, it made me laugh, which is not a common outcome from an outdoor posting! Excellent work from our friends in Paris, and bonus points for the multiple images showing that they really went “big” with this idea and executed it with tons of impact.

Ad of the Day – May 14 (Madrid)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: Bassat Ogilvy
  • Location: Madrid
  • Client: Ford
  • Name: “Used cars that smell like new”

Why I like it: Finally! I’ve always, always wondered why no one did this before – it’s just so obvious. There’s a lot of merit in taking the obvious and actually executing it very well. It’s an easy sell to the client and to the consumer, because it needs no explanation. And this is no stunt – of course the smell of new is the hook to open your mind to a further pitch on these used cars. You don’t normally see communications that involve the sense of smell, probably because it’s hard to pull off. Yet when it works, it does so on a very internal level, I think it’s very powerful and still relatively unexplored territory. Congrats to the folks at Bassat Ogilvy for going through with it – who’s next?

Ad of the Day – May 10 (Sydney)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: The Monkeys
  • Location: Sydney
  • Client: The Star (an entertainment complex – think Vegas Casino)
  • Name: “There will be stories”

Why I like it: This is very…different. Some will like it, some will say “…huh? What was that all about?” I loved it – it gets high marks from me for being ballsy and fully going for this quirky concept. We’ve had a previous ad of the day from a Las Vegas casino which had similarly notes of decadence, so it’s interesting to compare. The Star mixes off-beat, retro nostalgia, cool cinematography, and interesting little visual back-stories to create a picture of excess, mystery and glamour…all without taking oneself too seriously. Nicely done by the Aussies!