Ad of the Day – August 8 (Cape Town)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: Brandlab
  • Location: Cape Town
  • Client: Nedgroup Investments
  • Name: Hudson
  • Category: Film

Why I like it: Ah, the power of storytelling! Let’s say I tell you I’ve got an ad for a financial institution…[yawn] With a tagline of “Make thing happen” [zzzzzzz], and the ad conveys the value of  “calm, informed decisions” and “in the right hands, everything is possible” [drool, snore] Fine, let’s try a different approach…the ad depicts the “miracle on the Hudson”, where a passenger plane leaving Manhattan blows all engines in mid-takeoff, can’t make it to a runway, and within seconds the captain makes the decision to glide into a crash-landing on the Hudson river…[wait, WHAT?! Let me see that!] I can’t recall an example where a story so clearly lifts the mundane and cliché into an interesting, sensible, even compelling message. It works because you’ve got the charming captain delivering the message. And because his qualities perfectly match those which the bank wants to be known for. But the real star here is the story. It’s a compelling, gripping tale that captures the imagination. We are all used to the idea of famous people in ads, mainly as an attention-getter. How about “employing” famous stories?

 

PS – Thanks to @Dan_FranDisco for the find!

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Ad of the Day – December 6 (Cape Town)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

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Today’s pick:

  • Agency: Lowe
  • Location: Cape Town
  • Client: The Cape Times (newspaper)
  • Name: “You can’t get any closer to the news”
  • Category: Print, OOH

Why I like it: Brilliant. In general one should strive to create work that is original in every way, a uniquely singular idea. But if you can’t get there (and let’s face it, this is quite rare) what can also work really well is to take something very common…and put a unique and original spin on it. This way you benefit from the awareness of the former, and the impact of the latter.  In this campaign, the message of “bringing you close to the news” is delivered in a way that is clever, playful, accessible and…so simple and obvious ( another sign that you may have struck creative gold: if the reaction is “wow…that’s a cool twist!…but…it’s so simple, so obvious…someone must have done it before!” Once you check and realize that it actually hasn’t been done at all…run with it before someone else does it!). Good stuff from our friends in Cape Town! 


Ad of the Day – September 5 (Cape Town)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

 

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: FoxP2
  • Location: Cape Town, South Africa
  • Client: MWeb (a cloud storage provider)
  • Name: “Full of goodness. Rediscover Dairy”
  • Category: Print

Why I like it: Sure, it’s a little “scammy”…but I think it’s well worth sharing because there’s something about it that is pretty unique. It seems like a pretty simple print ad, with a central image paid off by a small tagline in the bottom right. Certainly the image stops you on your tracks, the kinetic motion of the milk coming out of the mouth like vomit is not something I’ve ever seen (in a print ad..), and once you’re hooked you’re drawn in to notice the person, the bleak surroundings…and a question starts building in your mind about what this is all about. Very cool. But what really sets this ad apart is that it’s a sort of “double negative” approach to selling a product: The milk is shown in a negative way (spewing out of someone’s mouth in disgust)…but…this comes from a negative person (whale killer, child exploiter…). So, a negative times a negative equals…a positive! It’s just like math! The tagline helps you understand that this is all actually a good thing…it’s happening because milk is wholesome! The entire logic thing actually clicks in your brain much faster than I just described it, and it’s just intriguing because it’s such a logical contortion…which somehow…works. Wow. Second interesting print ad in a row from the same agency in Cape Town, I want whatever they’re drinking!

Ad of the Day – August 29 (Cape Town)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

 

  

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: FoxP2
  • Location: Cape Town, South Africa
  • Client: MWeb (a cloud storage provider)
  • Name: “Make sure you never have to do this again”
  • Category: Print

Why I like it: It catches your attention, and forces you to read the copy, where it delivers the message that pays it all off, in a branded way, and with a chuckle. That’s all you need. Two  thoughts that came to mind as I appreciated this series of ads. 1) One often hears that you need to be telegraphic, to tell the story in an interesting and immediate flash of brilliance, before the fickle consumer turns the page. But…I think this might not be enough for great print. You need a two-step process where you hook the attention…without giving it all away. That’s how you force them to read the copy. And that’s where you introduce your product as a central part of the story. If not – they’re just going to remember the very clever visual metaphor/analogy, and not that ad about your product. 2) It occurs to me that in print the very best images not only communicate the message of the moment…but create a story in your mind…set your mind thinking about the before and after, the whole universe that surrounds this one shot. A couple of buddies backpacking across India, daring each other to eat the first thing they see when they arrive to a village…the friend barely containing his laughter as he takes the picture…the jokes at the gastro-suffering that surely followed…it goes on an on. Same with the poor overweight backpacker that reached the peak, cursing to the heavens in his mind, but still gives a feeble thumbs up to fake his good cheer…or the guy in the dolphin suit wondering if it’s all really worthwhile. You could write whole paragraphs triggered by these shots. And this has to count for something. Inspiring work coming at us from beautiful Cape Town!

Ad of the Day – March 14 (Cape Town)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: Foxp2
  • Location: Cape Town
  • Client: Brandhouse Drive Dry initiative (an anti-drunk driving PSA)
  • Name: “Who’s driving you home tonight?”

Why I like it: Because it scares the shit out of me – just as intended. Yesterday we featured a breast cancer awareness ad that got to you via humor and an unexpected twist. And we’ve featured an anti-drunk driving ad from New Zealand that went at it from an authenticity/humor angle. Both work. This one sure does too. Drink and drive, and you’re going to end up with these guys…bad news all around, so you’d better really think twice! The execution is particularly inspired, I think: fantastic sound track, great casting, great photography, great set design – just gives you a miserable feeling all around, which has stopping power and sends a stern message. Good stuff from our friends in Cape Town, be sure to check out the print campaign below, it’s just as good.

    

SPECIAL BONUS for those who read all the way down!

Alert readers will know that the above is the continuation of a campaign…which started with the ad below a year or two ago. It’s fantastic so I had to share…same elements as the above, but even more macabre, threatening, and with an element of surprise. A gem, enjoy.

 

Ad of the Day – January 11 (Johannesburg)

Every morning I scour the web and look at the latest ads (in any medium) from around the non-US world. Then I post for you my Ad of the Day. Some days it will be awesome, some days you might not like it. But it’s the Ad of the Day!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: Ogilvy Johannesburg (full disclosure – I’m an Ogilvy employee, but had nothing to do with this whatsoever)
  • Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
  • Client: Huggies
  • Name: “Stretchy” (I made this name up, since there wasn’t one on the video)
  • Why I like it: I’ll wager that 95% of parents will like this ad. You might think this is obvious for the category, but quite the contrary – most diaper ads leave me flat, or just feeling relieved that this stage of my life is over. But this one works so well, it’s a little gem. Why? How? You take a decent product benefit (these diapers fit great!), tie it to a fairly generic insight about parents wanting only the very best for their cute kids, and come up with a pretty neat creative idea: “these diapers fit…the way clothing should“. So far so good. But then, the way this is executed, is where the magic happens. Suffice it to say that the slo-mo face pull is not only cute as hell, but it’s oh-so-true, and that extra pinch of delightful recognition is what brings a smile to your face and makes it special. Another way I know this is good is because I can think of 1,000 lame ways to make an ad about this benefit – yet this is definitely not one of them:) Cheers to our friends in Joburg!

note: Normally I post current ads yet this one is from late last year…the reason is that I found this ad, bookmarked it, and then lost the link when I gave up my laptop at my previous employer. I searched like crazy for it and I couldn’t find it anywhere…until finally I did. So consider this a rescued gem from the near past.

Ad of the Day – December 12 (Johannesburg)

Every morning I scour the web and look at the latest ads (in any medium) from around the non-US world. Then I post for you my Ad of the Day. Some days it will be awesome, some days you might not like it. But it’s the Ad of the Day!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: Ireland-Davenport
  • Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
  • Client: The Walking Dead (a tv show about zombies)
  • Name: “Washing Powder”
  • Why I like it: The Walking Dead is a tv series about survival in a zombie-infested world. I thought this was a very clever way to get you thinking about the show. These types of parodies rely on careful balance – you can’t give it away too soon, but if you take too long people will think it’s a detergent ad and “tune off”. So, you’ve got to drop a clue, and it needs to be almost subliminal. Job well done! The  demo had me thinking something was “wrong”, but I couldn’t place my finger on it. Once the reveal came, I was hooked, almost in appreciation of the clever trap. Even though I’m not sure the final explanatory tagline truly works {the notion that “life goes on”), it’s a really nice idea and execution by the folks at Ireland-Davenport, certainly not your everyday TV show promo ad. Interestingly, we went 4 months without any “Ad of the Day” from South Africa, and now we’ve had two on consecutive days!

Ad of the Day – December 9 (Cape Town)

Every morning I scour the web and look at the latest ads (in any medium) from around the non-US world. Then I post for you my Ad of the Day. Some days it will be awesome, some days you might not like it. But it’s the Ad of the Day!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: Ogilvy Cape Town
  • Location: Cape Town, South Africa
  • Client: SAB (makers of Carling beer)
  • Name: “Darling to Carling”
  • Why I like it: This 2 minute case study is WELL worth your while. It’s a case study about how thinking harder, being ballsier, and committing to taking things “all the way” can have a huge payoff. Of course, beer is always ripe with creative potential – but between potential and fruition is the thinking and the doing. I won’t say more, just see it for yourself. And then kick yourself because last time your company did a similar sponsorship all you did was some t-shirts and a hospitality tent! Happy Friday, brought to you by the talented folks at Ogilvy Cape Town for our very first South African “Ad of the Day”!