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- 05/16/16--06:04: _JetBlue's Times Squ...
- 05/16/16--07:17: _Ad of the Day: Butt...
- 05/16/16--08:10: _Orbit Gum Gets Surp...
- 05/16/16--09:05: _Agencies on Canal S...
- 05/16/16--10:20: _Champion Swimmer Ia...
- 05/17/16--06:37: _Agency Post-it Wars...
- 05/17/16--09:14: _Why Facebook's Love...
- 05/17/16--09:32: _Nike Is Giving Away...
- 05/17/16--11:17: _Ad of the Day: Linu...
- 05/17/16--11:48: _Here's the Best Rea...
- 05/17/16--12:31: _Introducing the Han...
- 05/17/16--14:00: _This Disney Agency ...
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- 05/18/16--06:43: _This Brooklyn Agenc...
- 05/18/16--07:26: _Craft Brewers Teame...
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- 05/19/16--06:36: _Ray-Ban Is Latest B...
To push its JetBlue Card—and hopefully drive some impulse trip planning—JetBlue created a digital billboard that tells people standing in Times Square how quickly they can get to nicer climes, right from where they're standing.
The Android-based billboard, created with OutFront Media, uses the Google Maps API and JetBlue's active flight schedule to produce driving and flight data in real time. Whenever people see a special hashtag, the first person to tweet it with the JetBlue Twitter handle can score a voucher for a round-trip flight.
In addition to generating engagement, this is a strategy that could serve to unblock whatever it is in our minds that's constantly telling us we don't have time for a quick, relaxing jaunt. Manhattanites could probably use the reminder more than anybody.
Just think: In half a working day, you could be in West Palm Beach!
The board is the latest addition to a broader campaign for the launch of the JetBlue Card and its loyalty program. Here's the spot, created by MullenLowe, that kicked it off:
Gotta say, we're up for any card that lets us eat lobster right out of bed. And if we can pop over to Florida right after, why not?
Creative Credits for JetBlue Card "Card with a Crew" :60/:30/:15s; "Honeymoon," "Start-Up," "Rainforest" :30s/:15s
Chief Creative Officer: Mark Wenneker
Executive Creative Directors: Tim Vaccarino, Dave Weist
Creative Director: Jon Ruby
Creative Director: Enrique Camacho
Sr. Copywriter: Tim Bildsten
Sr. Art Director: Ryan Montgomery
Executive Director of Integrated Production: Liza Near
Director of Broadcast Production: Zeke Bowman
Producer: Vera Everson
Group Account Director: Drayton Martin
Account Service: Chip Cook, Steph Shaw, Hayley DiMarco
Production Company: Dummy
Director: Harold Einstein
Executive Producer/Producer: Eric Liney
DP: Jonathan Freeman
Editorial: Arcade NY
Editor: Dave Anderson
Assistant Editor: Chris Angel
Producer: Gavin Carroll
Executive Producer: Sila Soyer
VFX: The Mill LA
VFX Supervisor/Lead VFX Artist: Tara Demarco
Producer: Anastasia von Rahl
Animation: Brand New School
Animator: Jim Forster, Dan Logiudice; Designer: Abigail Logiudice
Music by Butter
Stock music: Beat Norm by APM Music – Start-Up
Audio Post: Eleven Sound
Sound Design/Mixer: Jeff Payne
Creative Credits for JetBlue Card Times Square Dynamic Out of Home Billboard
Chief Creative Officer: Mark Wenneker
Executive Creative Directors: Tim Vaccarino, Dave Weist
Creative Director: Jon Ruby
Creative Director: Enrique Camacho
Director of Digital: Aaron Clinger
Creative Director/Technologist: Christian Madden
Director of Development Operations: Steve Laham
Associate Creative Director/Technologist: Joe Palasek
Sr. Creative Technologist: Stefan Harris
Sr. Creative Technologist: Justin Bogan
Sr. Copywriter: Tim Bildsten
Sr. Art Director: Ryan Montgomery
Jr. Art Director: Ian Todd
Executive Director of Integrated Production: Liza Near
Group Head Digital Producer: Natalie Bergeron
Sr. Digital Producer: Brock Savage
Content Producer: Eric Skvirsky
Senior Editor: Robert Apse
Editor: Nick Brecken
Group Account Director: Drayton Martin
Account Service: Chip Cook, Steph Shaw, Hayley DiMarco
Group Digital Media Director: Jade Watts
Associate Media Director: Kelly McGowan
Sr. Vice President, Public Relations Account Director: Jaclyn Ruelle
Public Relations Account Supervisor: Lauren Brennan
Public Relations Sr. Account Executive: Kate Colangeli
VP, Innovation and Product Engagement, OutFront Media: Andrew Miller
Strategic Partnerships, OutFront Media: Valerie Vespa
American cheese isn't just about getting your own. It's about helping someone else get theirs, too. That, at least, is the upshot of a sentimental new ad from iconic dairy company Land O'Lakes, created by The Martin Agency.
A young man waits at a deli counter for his ticket to be called. A nursery-rhyme voiceover waxes philosophical about the passage of time, and the passing along of rituals. The young hero reminisces about how he's buying groceries just the way his mom used to do.
When his number finally comes up, he makes a modern gesture of consumer chivalry.
Featuring the tagline "Add a little good," the commercial is part of a broader campaign—Martin's first for the brand—that includes print and digital work, along with two other 30-second TV spots focusing on the marketer's most famous product: butter.
In one, a little girl helps her mom cook, chopping onions with a plastic knife, washing carrots and ensuring the pepper shaker is handy. Like the first ad, the rhyming voiceover muses on the importance of showing the next generation the way. In the end, it turns out the meal they've been making isn't for themselves.
In the last one, three Land O'Lakes farmers rise at 5 a.m. to tend their cows. The voiceover celebrates the company's model—it's a cooperative owned by more than 4,000 producers and members—before arriving at that old American saw about doing things right even when it's hard, as the farmers sit down for butter-drenched breakfasts with their families.
Overall, it's a sweet approach, even if it flirts with being saccharine. It's beautifully produced, with inviting visuals and soundtracks sure to tug on plenty of heartstrings, even if the sing-song copy risks driving viewers insane upon repeat exposure.
It also doesn't hurt that butter pretty much sells itself. But the tagline is particularly apt, too—as good as butter is, it's probably not a good idea to eat too much.
Print work and credits below.
Client: Land O'Lakes
VP Marketing, US Dairy Foods: Heather Anfang
Director, Integrated Marketing Communications: Leah Lamon
Marketing Director, Consumer Cheese: Martin Abrams
Director, Test Kitchens & Consumer Affairs: Becky Wahlund
Team Leader, National Retail Operations: Bob D'Imperio
Director Member Relations: Pete Garbani
Director, Superspreads: Stacey Kearin
Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC), Superspreads and INBD: Melissa Alphin
Agency: The Martin Agency
Chief Creative Officer: Joe Alexander
Executive Creative Director: Andy Azula
Creative Director: Jordi Martinez
Senior Art Director: Tara Gorman
Senior Copywriter: Lassiter Stone
Managing Director – Production & Development: Steve Humble
Executive Producer: Letitia Jacobs
Senior Producer: Adrienne Daniel
Associate Broadcast Producer: Coleman Sweeney
Business Affairs Supervisor: Alice Isner
Director of Production Business Management: Karen Taylor
Senior Project Manager: Courtney Faudree Hurd
Group Account Director: Walker Teele
Account Director: Carey Ely
Account Supervisor: Chloe Bos
Account Executive: Sarah Smith
Account Coordinator: Alexis Nelson
Production Company: Thomas Thomas Films
Director: Kevin Thomas
Executive Producer: Philippa Thomas
Producer: Jon Dino
Director of Photography: Robert Pendar-Hughes
Food Stylist: Debi Halpert
Editorial Company: White House Post
Editor: Heidi Black
Assistant Editor: Sam Perkins
Executive Producer: Joni Williamson
Head of Production: Joanna Manning
Producer: Jonlyn Williams
Animation/VFX: Go Overboard
VFX Supervisor/Lead Flame Artist: Jan Cilliers
Flame Assist: Sarah Vigil
Flame Artists: Brandon Sanders, Jim Bohn, Michael Angelo
Matte Painter: Dark Hoffman
Producer: Krystle Seiden
Executive Producer: Celest Gilbert
Colorist: Matthew Schwab
Music for "Next" & "Soup Kitchen": Human
Composers: Craig DeLeon ("Next")
Thomas Keery ("Soup Kitchen")
Music for "Co-Op": Asche & Spencer
Audio Post Company: Rainmaker Studios
Sr. Sound Designer, Music Composer, Technical Supervisor: Jeff McManus
Executive Producer, Owner: Kristin O'Connor
General Manager / Scheduler: Clinton Spell II
Here's a gum for people who feel they've bitten off more than they can chew.
Wrigley's Orbit is rolling out a new campaign tagged "Time to Shine," a shift from the brand's familiar "Just brushed clean feeling" to something more aspirational.
"The idea is that when you have a clean mouth or fresh breath, you feel more confident," John Starkey, regional vice president of marketing at Wrigley Americas, tells AdFreak. "The scripts are a celebration of what can happen when you feel ready to take on your 'Time to Shine' moment."
In the minute-long anthem spot below, we meet various gum chewers who feel unsure of themselves in the classroom, on sports fields, at weddings and elsewhere. British actor Noah Huntley provides the voiceover, though he doesn't talk and chew gum at the same time:
Three BBDO offices—EnergyBBDO, CLM BBDO and BBDO South China—collaborated on the campaign. "It is more aspirational than you'd expect from a gum commercial," says Starkey. "We've shifted away from the things chewing Orbit helps you get rid of, like food or coffee, and instead are focusing on being ready for what comes next. And those moments can be very small or very big."
Such "moments," previewed in the anthem spot, are explored in a series of 15-second clips, each with a different hero or heroine. First up, a young soccer player gets her kicks:
"The trickiest thing on set was capturing the right confident smiles," says EnergyBBDO creative chief Andrés Ordóñez. "It can be hard to show genuine emotion on demand without it seeming posed or overly manufactured, especially when it comes to smiling."
Next, a pint-sized basketball player rises to the occasion:
Lastly, we find love at first sight on a public bus. (Don't leave the gum beneath the seat.)
That last ad seems to channel a vibe from another Wrigley's brand, Extra Gum. And given the global success of "The Story of Sarah & Juan," we wondered if perhaps the Orbit team felt "extra" pressure to perform?
"For Extra, it's about the act of sharing and connection," says Starkey. "With Orbit, it's having the confidence to be ready for your moment."
But how, exactly, does Orbit prepare you for said moment? Will you shoot better hoops with minty breath? Is that Steph Curry's big secret?
The emotional approach works in Extra's long-form videos, largely because the gum is tangential to the storylines, which are riveting in their own right. Also, the clever use of wrappers is just so three-hanky sweet, it's tough to be overly critical.
In Orbit's ads, however, the product is more front and center—the chewing faces are, at any rate—and for some viewers, this could make the aspirational message seem strained or downright silly.
The work is just earnest enough to be ripe for parody or ridicule, and we wish Anonymous Content director Joachim Back had leaned into the comedy a bit harder. Still, the concept obviously isn't meant to be taken too literally, and the gum-in-cheek tone is more successful than not.
Client: Wrigley, a Subsidiary of Mars Inc.
Agency: Energy BBDO & CLM BBDO & BBDO South China
Chief Creative Officer: Andrés Ordóñez
Executive Creative Director: Kevin Lynch
Creative Director: Pedro Pérez
Creative Director: Josh Gross
Creative Director: Jeff Cena
Creative Partner: Helen Sze
Associate Creative Director: Alejandro Peré
Associate Creative Director: Dan McCormack
Sr. Art Director: Jesús Diaz
Director of Integrated Production: Rowley Samuel
Executive Producer: John Pratt
Producer: Alice Chu
Director of Music: Daniel Kuypers
Vice President, CLM BBDO: Julien Lemoine
Deputy Managing Director: Laurent Duvivier
Group Account Director: Melanie Marchand
Account Director: Erin Welsh
Global Strategic Planner: Veronique Bernard
Production Company: Anonymous Content
Director: Joachim Back
Managing Director: Eric Stern
Producer: Tim Kerrison
Visual Effects: The Mill
Colorist: Luke Morrison
Design Artist: Anzie Lee, Erik Michelfelder, Anthony Morrelle, Adrian Navarro
2D Lead: Jay Bandlish
2D Artist: Andrew Pellicer, Michael Sarabia, Trent shumway, Ryan Urban
Head of Production: Andrew Sommerville
Producer: Tracey Khan
Audio: Stir Post
Audio Sound Design/MIx: Nick Bozzone
Audio Producer: David Kaplan
Audio Producer : Mindy Verson
Editorial Company: The Assembly Rooms
Editor: Eve Ashwell
Editor: 60/30 Anthem : Sam Rick-Edwards
Assistant Editor: Edward Cooper
Producer: Polly Kemp
US Executive Producer: Mary Know
It started out, reportedly, with a single word: "HI."
That was early last week. By the weekend, a full-blown Post-it note art war had erupted on Canal Street in New York City, with a number of agencies participating—including Havas Worldwide, Horizon Media, Cake Group, Biolumina and Harrison and Star. (Update: Getty Images has also been involved.)
On social media, the posts have been tagged #canalnotes and #postitwars and have been flooding in. It's a wonder any client work was getting done at these shops last week.
@LishKapish has been among the better documenters of the whole battle—posting photos including the one at the top of this post, taken Monday.
The whole thing is so perfect for ad agencies. It's colorful, juvenile, creative and competitive—and has the effect of making the agency windows all look like elementary schools.
Have a look below at some of the impressive creations. This war seems destined only to get bigger, both on Canal Street and elsewhere after agencies hear about it. In fact, we have word that at least one of the Canal Street agencies is planning the next big step in the #postitwar—we'll have that story as it happens.
UPDATE: Here's a follow-up story about how other shops, and even 3M, have gotten involved in the #postitwars.
Ad agencies will eventually tire of fake documentary videos, we promise—but not before Optus has a chance to reveal that, yes, Olympic swimmer Ian Thorpe's Thorpedo Pool Cleaning ad was a joke.
Specifically, it's part of Optus' "The Olympics for Small Business" campaign, which is giving Australian small businesses a chance to compete for four trips to Rio 2016.
Check out the original ad here.
There's also the reveal video below.
Yes, it turns out Thorpedo Pool Cleaning "founder" Thorpe doesn't take himself very seriously, which breathes a lot of vigor and fun into this whole thing. Referring to pool cleaning as "a natural progression in [his] career" and showing off the drawer containing his Olympic gold medals (and petty cash) are our favorite moments, and his pool shapes flashcard test is pretty great, too.
As always with ads like this, the reveal of what's actually being advertised is a little rocky, but it's worth it to see an Olympian make fun of himself for three minutes.
There was a time when a big company like 3M might have sent a nasty letter to the agencies waging a Post-it war on Canal Street—telling them to quit sullying its brand name in social posts. These days, though, any company that knows anything about social would be thrilled to see something like this develop.
And 3M was.
As the #canalnotes battles got into full swing last week—with Canal Street firms including Havas Worldwide, Horizon Media, Cake Group, Biolumina, Harrison and Star, Getty Images and Heartbeat Ideas festooning their windows with competing Post-it creations—3M leaped into action.
"We learned about the Post-it War battle last week and are thrilled that these companies are using Post-it products for this type of creative expression," Jeff Hillins, global business director for 3M's Stationery and Office Supplies Division, tells AdFreak. "When we heard about the influx of agencies interested in participating, we immediately jumped in and provided Post-it Super Sticky Notes so that more people can get involved."
And yes, they really did send Post-it reinforcements, which is apparently SOP at 3M.
"Upon receiving word that a Post-it War has begun, Post-it Brand operatives deploy a top secret case of Post-it Super Sticky Notes to ensure a successful mission," Hillins says. "We unfortunately cannot share an image as we prefer to keep the mystery surrounding the cases alive for the next Post-it War."
Thankfully, a Havas employee did post an image of this top secret case, which appears to have included handy instructions for making Post-it art:
That's pretty impressive engagement from the brand, which might have been spurred to think about the appropriate response to such window "wars" when one broke out in Quebec last August. 3M and Post-it have both also been posting about #canalnotes in social, with Post-it retweeting almost all mentions of it on Twitter.
Other brands and agencies have gotten involved, too. Staples also claimed to be sending reinforcements (albeit the generic Staples stickies, and not Post-it brand).
Meanwhile, the wars are ongoing—and even spreading beyond Canal Street, with creations appearing in agency windows as far afield as Dublin and Tokyo.
Media agency Maxus USA's NYC office, out of the blue, posted this insane creation on social—but we'd like to see what it looks like from the street, or it doesn't count.
This Keith Haring addition was inspired, too:
In a nice twist, AdFreak sister brand the Clio Awards challenged agencies to post a Clio statue in the window—and even offered a free table at this year's award show to the first shop to do so (which turned out to be Havas):
But it's not all fun and games everywhere. Horizon Media's landlord apparently had issues with the game at 75 Varick St., on the corner of Canal. The Post-its can stay up for two more weeks, but then have to come down.
In the infancy of virtual reality, two opposing extremes of 360° films have tended to dominate the brand space. On the one hand, you have your epic visual extravaganzas, including explosive work in gaming. On the other hand, you have quieter, more empathetic filmmaking about putting oneself in another's reality—although, to create an element of surprise, this other reality is often remote, difficult to access and far removed from one's own life.
For its first big experimental VR film, Facebook saw an opportunity to make a third kind of piece—one that's both heightened yet familiar, ambitious yet ordinary, something quietly grand about everyday life. This fits the Facebook brand perfectly, of course—this is, after all, a giant company that enables the smallest, most ordinary moments of human interaction.
The resulting three-and-a-half-minute film, which just rolled out Tuesday, is called "Here and Now." It was made by The Factory, Facebook's in-house creative studio, and was shot on—and in some ways serves as advertising for—the Facebook Surround 360 camera, which was introduced last month at F8.
As a story and a piece of craft, it fulfills its high-low mission by showing ordinary moments in a grand space—eight vignettes of people engaging with friends and family in the main concourse at New York's Grand Central Terminal.
Watch the film below. (It will be on Oculus VR later today.) If your browser has trouble playing it, you can watch it on Facebook instead.
The Factory's creative output has been strong for a while, and this piece is an impressive addition to its portfolio of work. It was shot in a single take, which called for exacting choreography and fluid performances. The narrative is only loosely structured, yet the piece has an oddly emotional effect—its theatricality and its naturalism combine to create a curiously meaningful meditation on people and place.
Adweek previewed the film exclusively last week, and spoke with The Factory creative director Larry Corwin and executive producer Margaret McLaughlin about its creation.
Facebook's engineers "built this [camera], and they came to The Factory and said, 'Can you make an amazing piece of content for this?' And of course we jumped at it," said Corwin.
From the beginning, he and the team wanted something different than the usual VR work.
"We looked at a lot of 360° films out there right now," Corwin said. "There are these epic things, and also these human things where you travel far distances. It felt like there was this white space in there where we could show moments of everyday humanity. … You can create things about really local humanity, everyday humanity, and they can be just as poignant as anything on either of these poles."
The production challenges were imposing.
The shoot involved some 20 principal actors and 500 extras all choreographed in a single space for a single take—on a camera that doesn't allow the director (Smuggler's Jaron Albertin) to review footage immediately afterward. Oh, and Grand Central Terminal only allows filming between 2 a.m. and 4 a.m.
"The whole process took about five weeks," McLaughlin said of the ideation and production. "On set, we had very limited time to come in, set up, rehearse and shoot, and break down. That was a huge challenge. We did it in three days."
Writing the script mostly involved trying to make the stories of human interaction broadly relatable yet specific enough not to be clichéd. "We wanted the moments to feel universal, but then draw back in and do them in an interesting way that merits watching each individual scene," Corwin said. "We wanted to see how all these different sets of characters could play off each other to form a bigger narrative, as well as working individually."
The sets of characters are diverse, and in many ways complementary. There is a family saying goodbye to a girl going to college, and a family reuniting. There are kids coming back from a class trip to the zoo, and a group of twentysomethings going out for the night. There's an arguing couple, and a reuniting couple.
"We sketched out general narratives and story arcs, but we also had backup scripts for all of them so we could feed lines to them if necessary," Corwin said. This loose structure was intended to help individual scenes within the entire 3:30 film to find their own pacing.
"We wanted to let it flow as it needed to, and let the actors work and play off each other, and figure out when to enter and exit the scene, and start and end their conversations, based on that," said Corwin.
The actors were all New York based, and many of them are actually friends or family members or couples. (This was done to enhance the reality of their connection.) Facebook also wanted natural-seeming performers—"actors that didn't feel too polished, that didn't feel like they would nail every line perfectly," Corwin said. "The perfection of imperfection in delivery was really important for us."
The film uses Nico's 1967 version of the Jackson Browne song "These Days," which has emotional heft and also firmly grounds the piece geographically. "We landed on it both for its meaning and its New York connection," Corwin said. "And the timing of the song worked out almost perfectly with the length of the film."
The film isn't branded beyond the opening title (and where it lives on Facebook). And indeed, isn't really meant as an "ad" for the social network, either.
"It's meant less as something to promote the Facebook brand and more as something to just inspire the possibilities in 360° VR filmmaking," said Corwin. "I think, overall, the takeaway is a feeling more than an intellectual notion. Just that feeling of connection."
"I don't think anyone knows exactly where VR is headed, but it'll be everywhere," said McLaughlin. "We see this as medium with so much potential to be in homes, in hospitals, to be everywhere. And we want to understand how to work in this medium and push it."
Of "Here and Now," she added: "Our hope is that you put this on and you're just there. The headset falls away, and you're having this moment. You can connect with the people who come in close to camera. You can hear their conversation. You can feel what they're going through. Or if you want to go against the storytelling, you can follow [other] characters, or look at the sky and see the famous ceiling. You're just having a New York moment."
Agency: The Factory at Facebook
VP Consumer and Brand Marketing: Rebecca Van Dyck
VP Executive Creative Director: Scott Trattner
Executive Producer: Margaret McLaughlin
Brand Marketing Manager: Sarah Russell, Lindsay Russell
Director of Marketing Communications: Jennifer Henry
Creative Director: Larry Corwin
Creative Director: Demian Oliveira
Creative Director: Cameron Ewing
Engineering Director: Brian Cabral
Engineer: Albert Parra Pozo
Art Director: Wilf Eddings
Copywriter: Luke Wicker
Producer: Mandi Holdorf
Producer: Cassie Gomrick
Communications Planner: Pavan Patidar
Director: Jaron Albertin
Executive Producer: Allison Kunzman
Director of Photography: Darren Lew
VR EP & Head of Post Production (Vrse.works): Armando Kirwin
VR Supervisor: Jason Schugardt
Executive Producer: Mike Wigart
Producer: Colin Clarry
Editorial: Spot Welders
Executive Producer: Carolina Sanborn
Editor: Ting Poo
Assistant Editor: J.C. Nunez
Sound design and Mix: Mach 1 Studios
Sound designer: Zach Rice
Executive Producer: Guin Frehling
Title Design: Buck Designs
Kyrie Irving has an arsenal of secret tricks that make him great at basketball, but his latest reveal may be his most surprising edge yet—his own personal donut.
In a new R/GA ad from Nike's Kyrie 2 sneaker, the Cleveland Cavaliers point guard promotes a special-edition design of a Krispy Kreme-themed shoe—the Ky-Rispy Kreme.
A traveling truck, meanwhile, has been distributing small numbers of the glaze-and-sprinkle-themed shoes in Cleveland, Baltimore, Manhattan and Brooklyn.
The commercial, which is part of R/GA's "Unexpected Moves" campaign for Nike, joins other spots featuring Irving's hard-to-explain wordplay-driven advantages, like an arcane math equation, the ability to turn into a human torch (which anyone who grew up playing NBA Jam will especially appreciate), or unique karaoke powers—certainly one of the best fake mid-game celebrations ever.
In this particular instance, it's great to watch Irving stuff his face with sugar-laden rings while trying to explain why they—or rather, their rubber-soled offspring—are so important.
A string of onscreen question marks, marking an inability to translate his donut-muffled praise, makes for a brilliant sneaker-head sales pitch ... because in the end, the performance doesn't really matter so long as they look good, and they do.
Campaign: Kyrie 2 "Unexpected Moves"
Spot: "Unexpected Move #79 – The Kyrispy Kreme"
Eight out of 10 fishermen prefer Smith sunglasses over other brands. So, what on earth is wrong with the other two guys?
That was where Linus Karlsson started out in brainstorming ideas for Smith's ChromaPop sunglasses, which help their wearers see better on the water. And it led to a whole bizarre, comic anti-campaign launching today, titled "Marty & Frank," whose colorful titular characters deem ChromaPop to be an unfair affront to pure, unadorned fishing.
The basic idea here isn't totally new—Trident has done ads about the one dentist out of five who wouldn't recommend the brand to patients. But the McCann/Commonwealth chairman and his startup agency, Ming, take "Marty & Frank" to absurdly amusing lengths in several long-form films and a bunch of teasers.
First, check out a five-minute establishing film here:
Karlsson did a lot of comedy early in his career, of course, including the famous Miller Lite work (including "Evil Beaver"), Buddy Lee and MTV's "Jukka Brothers" while at Fallon Minneapolis. He soon felt typecast, though, and ended up focusing for years on building businesses like Mother and McCann-Erickson instead of writing comedy. But about a year ago, he tells Adweek, he got the itch to get back into it.
"A year ago, someone showed me something and said, 'This is really funny.' Maybe it was me who was wrong, but I found it not funny at all," he says. "So, I started thinking I wanted to write something that I think is funny. But I have no idea if anyone else will think it is."
Judge for yourself. It's certainly quirky. Check out a few more longer films below.
Karlsson co-directed the campaign Josh Nussbaum of M ss ng P eces. Casting was interesting. They looked all over YouTube to find real people for the two lead roles. The older character is played by a man, Captain Steve, who is "the only licensed swamp tour guide in the Everglades," according to Karlsson. The younger man was found through a real-people casting agency.
In "Marty & Frank," fans of Karlsson's early work will quickly see that his affection for eccentric characters hasn't diminished. "I have always liked this world, for some reason," Karlsson says. "I've always been fascinated by people who don't necessarily live in the mainstream. I've also been fascinated with anything happening outside New York. I like going to small towns and places most people don't think about going. I don't know why, exactly. It just seems more interesting to me."
One danger, though, was that the ads could be seen as making fun of Marty and Frank, and people like them. Karlsson says that's the opposite of the intention.
"It was very important to make them likable," he says. "It's easy to stereotype, making them like Duck Dynasty—just kind of angry. I didn't want to do that. I wanted to show their more loving side. It's kind of like, you want to be there—it's a wonderful world where they make stuff. They're inventors. They just have their own way. And I would say it's a very imaginative world in which they live in. I think they're super happy in this world, too."
Karlsson is particularly fond of the squid salad scenes, and of Marty reading Frank a bedtime story. (The bedtime reading is from the book Fish Psychology, which, as you can see, isn't real—it was "written" by Karlsson. Oh, and the scientist in Norway who supposedly taught a salmon to nod hello in the morning isn't real, either.)
It's a fun series of spots, and a brave one too, says Karlsson.
"It actually shows the confidence of a brand that can do a whole campaign about two guys who don't like you," he says. "It's a little inverted. I've been talking to people and calling it 'inverted advertising.' Whatever that means."
See the campaign teasers and credits below.
Client: Smith Optics
Agency: Ming Utility And Entertainment
Chief Creative Officer: Linus Karlsson
Head of Production: Brian DiLorenzo
Creative Directors: Rasmus Keger, Joanna Crean
Creatives: Johan Leborg, Natalie Kocsis
Titles/Graphics: Olga Vladova
Client Manger: Lynn Hurley
Production Manager: Ilaria Conte
Production Company: M ss ng P eces
Directors: Linus Karlsson, Josh Nussbaum
Executive Producers: Ari Kuschnir, Kate Oppenheim, Brian Latt
Head of Production: Dave Saltzman
Producer: Brian Quinlan
Director of Photography: Adam Jandrup
Assistant Director: Dafna Harrison
Art Direction: Mark Dillon
Production Supervisor: Joe Falasca
Editorial: Jump Editorial
Executive Producer: Wade Weliever
Editors: David Johnston, Luis Moreno
Assistant Editor: Mickey Micklos
Music/Mix: We Are Walker/Heard Studios
Music Producer: Peter Gannon
Music Producer: Rachel Rauch
Producer: Heath Raymond
Engineer: Mike Vitacco
Color: Color Collective
Colorist: Alex Bickel
Executive Producer: Claudia Guevara
Hundreds of years from now, a new bionic race of human beings will look back on this moment—among other vestiges of our time—and conclude we all shared a god after all. (It's happened before.)
Remember Glimpse, the socially conscious agency that wants to fill a London subway station with nothing but billboards of cats? With just three days left on their Kickstarter campaign, they've found a way to sweeten the deal.
Battersea, the animal rescue center and one of the U.K.'s biggest charities, has agreed to partner with Glimpse to put stray cats on the posters—so, in addition to thinking fewer ad-cluttered thoughts on their commute, Londoners may actually be able to take a furry friend home with them.
But that's not all. The agency could still use help getting this off the ground.
"We're heading into the final few days of this campaign, and we're short," says James Turner, Glimpse's founder. "We'd like to make a personal appeal to any agency, creative director or senior executive to back us with a major pledge. We won't be able to publicize your involvement, but you can crow about it all you like. If you think that this project is a sign of where things are headed, then show your courage and back us."
Speaking of publicity, loyal followers of this effort may have noticed that the latest mockups feel less splashy than the originals. That's because, after receiving user feedback, Glimpse agreed to remove its deliciously catty Citizens Advertising Takeover Service (C.A.T.S.) logo.
While we understand the aversion, the final result feels a bit more Orphan Annie, shot by Anne Geddes. It also isn't immediately clear how people will make the connection to Battersea—without inevitably having to mock up an explainer ad.
So far, Glimpse has raised £12,160 (about $17,487), a hair over half of its £23,000 objective. If the project makes its goal, cats from Battersea's Dogs & Cats Home in South London will be cast for starring roles.
"We're thrilled that Battersea cats will be the stars in the final posters. We care for over 3,000 cats a year, with one in three of them arriving as strays, so hopefully this campaign will encourage lots more people to consider rehoming our fantastic felines," says Battersea's Lindsey Quinlan, who bears the ticklish title Head of Catteries (even on LinkedIn!).
"We all know that the best things in life are free, but the adverts around us don't tell that story," Turner adds. "CatsNotAds.com is an attempt to claw back some sanity from the onslaught of product ads on the tube."
There you have it—a sincere and heartfelt appeal. Which agency wants to be the first to come up to bat? We have peace of mind to save, and future generations to befuddle.
Advertising awards have reached peak honesty with the Handys, a new (fake) show that isn't a show at all—it's an app where you get a prize just for shaking your phone up and down like a real wanker. (Really: Pull up handyawards.org on your phone, and go to town.)
The concept comes from a couple of industry creatives who prefer to remain anonymous, according to the press materials.
"It's pretty clear award shows have gotten out of hand, so we wanted to take the piss out of them," says one of the co-founders and self-proclaimed Lifetime Achievement Winner. "But the Handys also signify how male-dominated advertising is. The fact that only 3 percent of creative directors are women should be a wake-up call to everyone in the industry."
The Handy Awards site explains further: "The Handys are the world's first advertising award show where you can give yourself an award in the comfort of your studio apartment or at your desk within your agency's open office. All without entering any work or sitting through someone else's boring case study video."
The press release adds: "Is the whole thing a bit crass? Sure. But lest we forget, we're in a service industry. This stunt makes a salient point for us to spend more time focusing on our clients' needs and less time servicing ourselves."
Last week we showed you a pretty cool livestreamed movie poster at Disneyland, featuring Johnny Depp interacting with fans in real time as the Mad Hatter from the upcoming Disney film Through the Looking Glass.
The execution was done by Denizen Company, whose co-founders, Joel Jensen and Joseph Matsushima, gave us some insight into how it was done.
AdFreak: Describe the project and how it came together.
Joel Jensen: We wanted to take the movie marketing materials that audiences are familiar with and Wonderland-ify them—take the elements people know to expect from a movie marketing campaign and make them feel more whimsical or magical or vibrant, and ultimately surprise people by showing them that what is familiar can still be magical because this is Disney. So this idea came from taking something that feels super standard, a movie poster, and bringing it to life.
As far as execution, we wanted to make something that felt like it belongs online. We value the internet as its own unique and spectacular medium, and so we always work to make content that puts the internet viewing experience first. So we shot it to feel organic, a little chaotic, and with an effort to make video viewers feel like not just like they were there, but that they are a part of the entire gag. That's something that is super important to us, and that is something we feel separates the internet from TV or anything else as a medium for entertainment.
How technically challenging was it?
Joseph Matsushima: This was a very technically challenging job because we needed it to feel simple; it had to feel completely real and organic for fans in the park as well as for Johnny Depp, who were in completely different locations, and we wanted it to feel like as much of a treat for Johnny as for the fans.
So we had to find a way to create real-time communication with little to no delay, allow Johnny to see, hear and respond to visitors immediately while keeping the quality of our video feed in Disneyland high enough to replicate a printed movie poster. Most conventional options would've left us dealing with lag, which stilts interaction far too much. So there was a great deal of effort put into finding/building technology that would allow for a zero-lag, high-definition, seamless communication between the Mad Hatter and his fans.
What was it like working with Depp, and what was his reaction to the experience?
Joel Jensen: He is a true genius and was an amazing actor and presence. He takes genuine pleasure in interacting with fans in character, and we wanted more than anything to facilitate that real connection as a marketing strategy. Most if not all of what you see in the video is him improvising, and it was a special thing to get to watch. He was wonderful and put a lot of effort into not just surprising people, but really engaging them and making them feel in the moment. The delight you see in the video really attests to that, and it's really only a small slice of what visitors got treated to on the day.
Client: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Agency: Denizen Company
Title: "The Mad Hatter Surprise"
Production: Denizen Company
Director: Denizen Company
Director of Photography: Hal Long, Adam Becker
Producer: C. Fitz, Carolyn Bratkowski
Agency Producer: Marissa Gallant
Tech Producer: Blake Morrison
Production Manager: Carmen Quiros
Production Coordinator: Rick Theberge
Production Designer: Gillas Correa
Editors: Nico Bellamy, Michael Darrow
Color: Jordan Branch
Audio Mix: Michel Tyabji
Nobody wants a stranger in their shower. And, unless you're a morning person, you especially don't want them talking to you in a manner more chipper than their yellow rain slicker.
But Holiday Inn Express has found an exception to that general rule, bringing Rob Riggle into the virtual shower—galoshes and all. InterContinental Hotels Group hired the comedian for its 360-degree video on YouTube.
Armed with shampoo, conditioner and a long-handled loofah, Riggle talks about the water's "proprietary blend" while offering a back scrub.
"It's somewhere between a squirt gun and a fire hose which, as we all know, is the sweet spot," he says in the two-minute film.
According to Holiday Inn Express vp Jennifer Gribble, this year's campaign is focused on "simple pleasures." She said using emerging technology such as 360-degree video gives the hotel brand a chance to showcase one of the key components of a room—the shower—in a humorous way.
"We understand the value of a great, energizing shower for our guests, and that's why we offer a multifunction shower head and plenty of water pressure in all our rooms," Gribble said.
Last year, Holiday Inn Express did something similar when it created a Pancake Selfie Express, taking the brand's one-touch pancake machine on the road and putting laser-printed selfies on the breakfast food.
"We used a new and innovative tactic to focus on an amenity that while not necessarily new, is something we know matters to our guests," Gribble said, referring to the new video.
Watch the scene below. To experience the full 360-degree experience, open the video on a smart phone using the YouTube app or view it in Google Chrome browser. (If you have a Google Cardboard headset handy, now is the perfect time to use it.)
Agencies talk a lot about brand DNA. Well, this Brooklyn agency's brand is its DNA.
Travis Weihermuller and Dominic Santalucia want their shop, lifeblood, to explore "what makes us human." So, they did so literally with their brand identity—by having their DNA analyzed in a lab, and pulling sequences that were unique to each of them.
The results were broken into lines of equal length, while the breaks in the lines form the DNA. "What makes us human is not the lines themselves but what lies between the lines," the partners say in the (quite trippy) press materials.
From there, they intentionally randomized the DNA sequences into one set and destroyed the master file. "It is impossible to know which section of DNA belongs to whom, giving lifeblood an identity of its own. This makes lifeblood more than one individual or one idea."
The brand identity also looks different in different media.
"The lines are used in randomly generated sequences throughout different mediums to show how the identity adapts wherever it resides," the partners say. "Although similar in nature, each application shows slightly different sequences. As the agency grows so will the amount of DNA sequences. This makes the identity constantly growing and evolving."
Here's where it gets a little goofy, though.
"Being a digital agency, lifeblood didn't feel right wasting paper on traditional stationary they would never use. Instead they used their own DNA on censored top secret FBI documents. This was intended to be a statement showing we are all complicit in our digital identity and privacy. They also created letterpress business cards that were designed to be the only physical touchpoint with the DNA."
The partners explain: "The reality is what we think of as a brand identity is rapidly changing before your eyes and we wanted to explore what that future could look like. Something that isn't necessarily your typical stand-alone brand identity but more of a visual language that can adapt with the expanding mediums that it could live within."
Love it? Hate it? Hate them? That's OK.
"The design was made to be loved or hated," they say. "We decided to create something that might be controversial in its simplicity and execution, and if everyone loves it great. If everyone hates, it even better."
This week is American Craft Beer Week. To celebrate, craft brewers have teamed up to create a single beer, which is being made using the same recipe by more than 100 craft brewers—and in an act of even greater unity, features the names of 4,490 craft brewers from all 50 states on the can.
It's a cool idea, and an interesting design, though truth be told it doesn't exactly pop. Still, it's the thought (and the quality of the beer) that counts—and craft brewers are using this week to spread their message with a movement to #MakeSmallBeerBig.
Victors & Spoils created a campaign video above. And also check out more of the ad materials. The Biggest Small Beer Ever is now on sale nationwide.
Agency: Victors & Spoils
Executive Creative Director: Sesh Moodley
Creative Director: Kate Kayne, Pat Horn
Associate Creative Director: Rob Lewis
Copywriter: Andrew Bridgers, Arthur Tanimoto
Art Director: Travis Brown
Account Director: Alexander Kayne
Agency Producer: Jenny Stefanov
Production Company: More Media
Director: The Dads
Editor: The Dads
Last month, more than 200 gravestones appeared in the Mediterranean Sea, about 200 meters off the Aegean coast of Turkey. Made of waterproof styrofoam that resembled marble, and anchored with weights, each stone bore the name of a Syrian refugee who died in the water while trying to reach Europe.
Created by TBWA\Istanbul for humanitarian aid group Support of Life, the "Sea Cemetery" bobbed on the waves like a cluster of buoys, eerie monuments to human tragedy.
"Support to Life loved the idea of an elegant artful installation, instead of a hard-core political expression," İlkay Gurpinar, chief creative officer at TBWA\Istanbul, tells AdFreak. "It's a touchy subject, and they wanted to touch the hearts of people in a visual and tender way."
In addition to the haunting sight of the headstones themselves—one inscribed with the name of Alan Kurdi, the 3-year-old Syrian boy whose drowning in 2015 made global headlines—the project video features somber footage of wreckage from failed attempts at passage, and interviews with grieving refugees who lost family members:
Some 4,000 Syrian refugees have died attempting to cross the Mediterranean since the Syrian civil war began five years ago. Lately, "people have started to lose interest and started perceiving this as only a political matter, rather than a matter of life," Gurpinar says. "Through a symbolic memorial for people who have lost their lives at sea, we wanted people to empathize with the situation and take it more personally. That's why we contacted actual refugees who have lost their loved ones in midst of their journey to freedom."
Creating the installation was "a very long and tough process with lots of planning involved," Gurpinar adds. "The diving team was underwater for over 18 hours," securing the memorial to concrete blocks at a depth of 25 meters. "Since it is one of the real locations where many refugees have lost their lives [near Kas, across from the Greek island of Kastelorizo], the municipality knew about the serious nature of this issue and they supported us," she says.
The resulting online film sends users to TheSeaCemetery.com, where they can learn more about the refugee crisis and make donations to Support of Life.
"At a time when this part of the world has started to normalize the issue, the project reminds us that this is one of the biggest disgraces of the century, and reminds people not to normalize it," Gurpinar says. "This is not about politicians. It is about real people like all of us who are risking their lives for the hope of having a future. In the end, we wanted people to feel this and take action."
Chief Creative Officer: Ilkay Gurpinar
Executive Creative Director: Volkan Karakasoglu
Group Head: Eser Yazici
Copywriter: Alpan Esen, Cem Cetin
Art Director: Ozge Guven, Ahmet Ulku
Digital Team: Serhat Poyraz, Evren Ozbozdagli
Agency Producer: Ceren Ozen, Lerzan Kuzgun
Print Production Manager: Hakan Gulsoy
Brand Management: Melis Inceer, Melis Senol, Bida Yusan
Strategic Planning: Ceren Sehitoglu, Can Degerli
Director: Ferit Kurtulus / Jaguar Projects
Producer: Tolga Topcu / Jaguar Projects
Music: Emre Irmak / Jingle Jackson
Airbnb is going old school in its newest local campaign—promoting New York businesses with a phone tree.
To support its sponsorship of the upcoming Airbnb Brooklyn Half Marathon, the hospitality tech company is running billboards and wild postings created by agency Collins. They feature a minimal, doodle-style aesthetic, an anthropomorphic version of the company's logo striking various running poses, and an invitation to learn more about all the borough has to offer—by dialing a 718 number, the classic area code for Brooklyn landlines.
Anyone who calls (718) 885-4228 gets to hear recordings of Airbnb hosts from different neighborhoods sharing recommendations for their favorite spots. Press 1 for restaurants and get clued in about options like Cobble Hill bar and grill Henry Public (and its Wilkinsons dessert) or Milk Bar in Prospect Heights. Press 2 for shopping and find out about Acorn, the nifty toy store in Boerum Hill, or Martine's Dream, a clothing store in Crown Heights. Press 3 for drinking and nightlife spots, like Achilles Heel in Greenpoint. Press 4 for music and entertainment and get the skinny on events like SummerScreen, Williamsburg's outdoor film series.
It's a fun gimmick that takes pride in its throwback technological limitations, even if they're a bit self-defeating—Brooklyn isn't small, and without location-tracking wizardry, the recommendations aren't necessarily that convenient. But the phone tree itself ultimate ties into Airbnb's more comprehensive NYC guide, and there's no shortage of other resources available to web-savvy tourists on where to find, say, the best bagel in a three-block radius.
While the visuals blend unusually well into graffiti-clad backgrounds, Collins executive creative director Matt Luckhurst points to two other historical examples—an infamous local dermatologist, and the DIY publishing scene—as sources of inspiration for the lo-fi approach.
"We wanted to speak to the entirety of Brooklyn. Old and new, young and old. We looked to the New York aesthetics of days past—from Dr. Zizmor subway ads to punk zines," he tells Adweek. "With this inspiration, we stripped back the color and filled the space with information. Rather than ask people to enter a hashtag, we present a way to use a phone the way it was intended—to make a phone call."
Executive Creative Director: Matt Luckhurst
Senior Designer: Christian Widlic
Producer: Jenny Yau
Illustration: Brandon Lane and Dark Igloo
Animation: Nicolo Bianchino
The cream keeps rising to the top at Organic Valley.
After earlier hit ads like "Saving the Bros" and "Real Morning Report," the brand really milks it in a new spot by having one of its dairy farmers, Gerrit van Tol, open a peculiar pop-up store on Elizabeth Street in Manhattan and do business for a single weekend last month.
Spoofing the hipster coffee-house/artisinal-maker mind-set, the store specialized in Organic Valley Half & Half, treating the oft-overlooked mixture as if it were a premier caffeinated beverage. Customers could even order their H&H in three "trendy" sizes: Lil Bit, Double and Lotta. (In your face, Starbucks!)
"It's pretty obvious coffee culture has become a parody of itself, considering how seriously it takes itself," David Littlejohn, creative chief at Humanaut, which crafted the campaign (as well as Organic Valley's earlier lauded efforts), tells Adweek. "The truth is, Organic Valley dairy farmers have the same amount of craft and passion for their product, but they would never talk about organic milk with the same level of pretension. We knew there was a funny tension between farmers and baristas we could play with."
In the store, the coffee itself was placed off to the side in stainless steel carafes, and available free of charge—just like milk, cream and, yes, half-and-half are in more traditional cafes.
"What surprised us most is that people didn't seem that thrown off or confused by a coffee shop that only sold organic half-and-half," says Littlejohn. "No one had a problem paying $2 for a pour of organic half-and-half. In the end, the idea wasn't as crazy as we thought it was."
Well, that's New York for you. Anything that costs only $2 just flies off the shelf.
Actually, the campaign's central joke is stretched a bit thin (and tad confusing at first), and poking fun at big-city coffee culture feels too easy. Still, Organic Valley earns Gold Level Stars for scale. Opening a physical store that sells half-and-half was a delicious conceit—and to stretch a metaphor, casting Farmer Gerrit was like the heart-shaped foam on top.
In his first trip to New York City, the dude really pours his heart into the barista role, exuding a folksy charm while casually tossing off some great lines. These include, "We're gonna need one of those modern logos with an X in it, or some arrows," and best of all, as he surveys the local street scene: "I just saw a girl carrying a ukulele!"
"Gerrit was cast mainly because he really, truly enjoys interacting with Organic Valley customers," says client vp of brand marketing Lewis Goldstein. "He and [his wife] Karen frequently represent Organic Valley at trade conferences, community events, farm visits and so forth."
Yeah, but how you gonna keep 'em down on the farm after they've seen Nolita?
Client: Organic Valley
Chief Creative Director: David Littlejohn
Chief Strategist: Andrew Clark
Copywriters: Liza Behles, Andy Pearson, Tyler Sharkey
Design Director: Stephanie Gelabert
Designer: Coleson Amon
Account Director: Elizabeth Cates
Production Company: The Bindery
Director: Eric Ryan Anderson
Executive Producer: Greg Beauchamp
DP: Josh Goleman
Producer: Bo Armstrong
Production Manager: Lee Manne
Editor: Tyler Beasley / Fancy Rhino
Post Producer: Katie Nelson / Fancy Rhino
Music: Carl Cadwell / Skypunch Studios
Store Design: Pink Sparrow Scenic
Brazilian agency AlmapBBDO does consistently brilliant campaigns for Getty Images, from 2012's "From Love to Bingo," which used 873 stills from the Getty archive to tell the story of a single life in one minute, to last year's "20 Years" print ads, which showed how four celebs had aged over time by featuring 111 photos of each of them.
Now, agency and client have just released their latest collaboration—a remarkable global campaign called "Endless Possibilities," which accomplishes the pretty amazing feat of assembling four famous faces using bits of other people's faces—all found in Getty's creative stock-art database (i.e., not editorial images).
The likenesses—of Prince Charles, the Dalai Lama, Pope Francis and Angela Merkel—are amazingly accurate. (There are four print ads, along with a video that brings the print work to life.) And yes, it took an enormous amount of painstaking effort to find the faces that could be pieced together into these digital doppelgängers.
"The briefing for this campaign was to present Getty Images on the basis of its variety. A collection with millions of images," AlmapBBDO senior copywriter Daniel Oksenberg tells Adweek. "So we thought: If we can do almost anything with that many images, imagine what can be done combining them. The possibilities are infinite. It's like genes. There are 25,000 genes that made every human being unique with the right combination. If 25,000 genes can do that, the millions of images from Getty Images should be able to do it, too. And it did."
The agency spent four months researching and testing different images.
"For each face to be recognized, every detail required a massive search, but as Getty Images has such rich content, we were able to find the exact details to the faces that we wanted to portray," says AlmapBBDO creative director Benjamin Yung Jr.
"We are very pleased to once again partner with AlmapBBDO to create an innovative and unique campaign that clearly and cleverly demonstrates Getty Images' role in the creative industry as the gold-standard visual-content source for any marketer, advertiser or publisher," says Susan Smith-Ellis, chief marketing officer at Getty Images. "This campaign highlights not only the quality and breadth of Getty Images creative content, but also the top-tier creative talent at AlmapBBDO. "This is a game-changing campaign, and I am excited to see the response from the creative community."
Title: Millions of Images. Endless Possibilities
Client: Getty Images
Partner/ CCO: Luiz Sanches
Executive Creative Direction: Bruno Prosperi
Creative Direction: Benjamin Yung Jr, Marcelo Nogueira, Andre Gola, Pernil
Digital Creative Director: Luciana Haguiara
Digital Head of Art: Pedro Burneiko
Copywriter: Daniel Oksenberg
Art Director: Andre Sallowicz
Illustrator: Vitor Fubu, Vetor Zero Print + Evandro Malgueiro
Photography: Getty Images
Web Designer: Adriel Nunes
Art Buyers: Teresa Setti, Ana Cecília Costa
Production Company: Vetor Zero
Direction: Gabriel Nobrega
Audio: Satelite Audio
Music: Team Satelite
Agency producer: Vera Jacinto, Diego Vilas Boas e Fernando Yamanaka
Project Manager: Mayra de Souza Otsuka
Technology Director: Eduardo Bruschi
UX Designer: Caroline Kayatt
Planning: Cintia Gonçalves
Accounts: Daniela Gasperini, Samia Reiter Paz
Media: Carla Durighetto
Client Supervisors: Renata Simões, Susan Smith Ellis, Kjelti Kellough
In yet another recreation of a 1997 experiment to try to get people to fall in love, Ray-Ban got a bunch of carefully chosen strangers to answer questions and look into each other's eyes for four minutes.
The brand said it hoped the subjects would open their hearts. It didn't say anything explicit about love, but creating closeness where it doesn't exist was the objective of the original Dr. Arthur Aron experiment—which The New York Times recently brought back into public discussion, spurring lots of four-minute eye-to-eye experiments, including a similar commercial from Prudential Singapore.
Perhaps inspired by the darkness of their classic shades, Ray-Ban's spots are black-and-white, moody, full of dark colors, and focus less on the redeeming intimacy of staring into a stranger's eyes than on the heart-wrenching stories that the questions elicit. Either happy stuff happened and was edited out, or the people who made the final cut simply haven't had a lot of happy moments in their lives.
This is a contrast from the Prudential spots, and from the times when I've done this experiment myself—there's usually more laughing, crying for joy, and even physical contact, which seems to happen naturally when you discuss intimate topics and gaze at someone across the lengthy expanse of four minutes.
In fact, there is usually an almost unavoidable period of awkwardness and straight-up giddiness that the Ray-Ban spots seem to skip entirely. The result is that watching the three individual encounters back to back is, frankly, depressing.
So, skip the three longer vids and stick to the montage of all the experiments (below), which at least provides a nice smattering of human intimacy, followed by a flutter cut of hugs at the end. You'll get the point.
This campaign, titled "Eye to Eye," kicks off something called "Open Your Heart," part of Ray-Ban's #ItTakesCourage campaign. That's a lot of words back to back, and it isn't clear how it all fits together.
According to Ray-Ban's press release, "#ItTakesCourage is a real commitment to engage audiences with powerful editorial content by collaborating with groups of world-class creatives from the fields of photography, film, design, illustration and music to bring each 'theme' to life in both documentary and fictional formats."
Hopefully that clears it up. #ItTakesCourage could mean just about anything, but in this case, courage seems to be about the willingness to talk to someone who doesn't look quite like you.
Rather than recreating an exhausted experiment, though, it might have been more interesting to see whether there's a difference between staring at someone for four minutes with Ray-Bans on, and without them. In conducting the experiment personally, I've taken off my actual prescription glasses or worn contacts so the frames wouldn't get in the way.
Notably, none of the participants in the spots are actually wearing Ray-Bans. In fact, there are no Ray-Bans to be spotted anywhere, not even hanging out in pockets or sitting on top of heads. Will the tiny logo in the corner, and the connection of eyes to glasses, be enough to distinguish this work as belonging to the brand?
#ItTakesCourage to create content for content's sake ... and to hope your brand connection will come through. Now, if you like, check out the back-to-back stories:
Director: Tom Green
Creative Director: Cameron Temple