Ad of the Day – September 3 (Shanghai)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: TBWA
  • Location: Shanghai
  • Client: Adidas
  • Name: #thisisme
  • Category: Film
  • Why I like it: A declarative, slightly subversive explosion of color, attitude and urban cool. Very bold. There are three elements at play: The crafting is a visual feast of styling, casting, lighting, direction, etc. It’s visually very arresting, enough that on its own they would have made a decent ad. But then you have the minimalist, in-your-face manifesto-style copy, which makes the visuals so much more interesting, turning what could have been a been a “music video” into an interesting 30 second brand declaration. Finally, this is one of those ads where you can see the strategy play out on the screen. For China, this is a bold (if not entirely original) strategy. “I am different, I am me, deal with it.” And bold is always better than giving in to the gravitational pull of generic. Kudos to the folks at TBWA and Adidas for picking a spot far outside the box, and then delivering on it with style and flair.

    PS – Creativity aside, what is interesting to me about this ad is that I think it will play better outside of China (where it builds a plausible myth of an edgy, hip, highly stylized emerging urban China) than in China itself (where the images onscreen are so incredibly niche – much more so than in the west – that they could struggle to gain traction or even be aspirational.) A daring bet by Adidas China.

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Ad of the Day – March 10 (Shanghai)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: TBWA
  • Location: Shanghai
  • Client: Adidas
  • Name: TGIF
  • Category: Film
  • Why I like it: At first this ad may seem a cool, uplifting ad, and not much more. But because it’s made in China, it’s actually quite significant. It’s one of those big early drops in what someday will become a rain-shower of Chinese creativity in advertising. Modern, vibrant, crisp, aspirational. With universal appeal…and yet decidedly and proudly Chinese. It’s the type of ad that I personally hold as a model of what China can and should be doing. Will it work in China? That’s the key question. If it does, it will be another step down the path. If it doesn’t, it’s back to the drawing board. We shall see…but I hope it works and we see more of this. World-class, locally relevant Chinese creativity (in advertising) will be a reality…the question is how soon, and in what form?