The creative industry has changed so much in such a short period, that we should be talking about ideas just as much as we talk about ads. Having said that, one of the two ads I like is from the ‘old world’ of tv, the other sits firmly in the new world. 

 

The point is, whether it’s a conventional 360″ spot or an experiential concept, they both have something in common – the ability to stop us in our tracks, make us do a double-take, make us think, ‘I never saw it that way before’.  Great creativity gives us fresh eyes to look at what we thought we knew.

 

Two Ads I Like

 

Honda – Grrr

In the UK, Honda was one of the most vanilla brands on the road until Weiden & Kennedy got hold of the account. The charming 90-second animation video was part of a bigger push to change the perception around Honda’s quality. 

 

 

As with all great ideas, this one springs from a clear insight, that you can sometimes hate something so much it becomes a force for change. In Honda’s case, that was improving their diesel engine. Great ads also have great execution and ‘Grrr’ is no exception, from the tune to the lyrics to the inspired choice of voiceover artist.

 

Plastic Oceans Foundation – Trash Isles

One could take the cynical view on how effective campaigns like the “Trash Isles” campaign are, but the Plastic Oceans Foundation certainly succeeded in raising awareness of plastic pollution. The campaign reached more than half a billion people and gained over 50 million video views. More importantly, the campaign was featured by multiple major media outlet worldwide.

 

 

Clearly, plastic pollution with the size of a country is a dramatic enough image in itself. Even cleverer was the lobbying for its independence as a country by the UN, and so oblige nations to take responsibility for cleaning it up. But is it an ad? Who cares? It’s a brilliantly creative way to look at a communications problem.

 

One I don’t like

 

Pepsi – Protest

This film was one of those moments when I felt ashamed to be in this business. How Pepsi’s in-house agency signed off on this script is beyond me. In this laziest of ideas, Kendall Jenner interrupts her fashion shoot to bring opposing sides together with a soft drink. 

 

 

At a time of social unrest in the US, this was pretty tone-deaf move, and that’s being charitable. On the plus side, it’s a warning and reminder to brands to not get so caught up in their own narrative that they lose touch with reality.

 

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