Chief creative officer, international, Digitaslbi
Such is the state of our industry that I wonder if I overreact when I look at ads nowadays. Pouring vitriol on stuff that’s OK and overpraising as genius stuff that’s only a little more than OK. I blame WHAT SOCIAL MEDIA IS DOING TO OUR BRAINS. Anyway, these ads are all mostly OK.
SPOTIFY is a bit better than OK, maybe because it’s about the seething sexual subtext underlying the simple interactions of family members. It’s a smart insight, linking the contrast between the communal nature of family and private lives of its members to the need for a family account. And you don’t see many ads about wanking these days. In fact, I can’t think of any at all, ever. Though, writing this, I’m looking forward to my inbox filling up with examples.
I’d love to like the HELLMANN’S stuff here because it’s brave, and we like bravery from clients and spend a lot of time asking for more of it. But not like this, I find myself thinking. And can we please, please stop with all the toasting in ad copy? “Here’s to” has to be on the banned clichés list, surely? I find the typography annoying and the idea behind these just doesn’t appear to have any connection whatsoever to the brand. I just don’t know why they’re doing this. I’m not squeamish, but these ads have me retching for the loo, not reaching for the Hellmann’s – sorry. Not OK.
ALZHEIMER’S SOCIETY. There are a lot of ads these days acknowledging our divided culture and urging us to see past our differences. Advertisers need to do this because the centre ground allows them to appeal to the broadest number of people possible. What a world we live in, when adspend needs to remind us of our better selves! This is an effective message reminding us that Alzheimer’s is indiscriminate and doesn’t care what filter bubble we occupy. I love that the media buy delivered the idea by showing it simultaneously on Channel 4 and ITV, presumably to Remainers on the former and Brexiters on the latter. It’s refreshing to see media and creative pulling together to underline the campaign idea – something we need to see more of.
Bradley Wiggins, mod hardman of cycling, now has a beard and is selling SKODAS. Someone who was prepared to do anything to win (maybe pushing the rules beyond breaking point, though we’d all rather not believe that) now has the perspective and the time to focus on family and make a surprising car choice. Somehow it all kind of works and we find ourselves liking Skoda as the car for people who’ve calmed down a bit but still like to stand out. As with all Skoda ads, this one is telling you it’s OK to buy a Skoda. That’s OK with me.
I’ve used STUBHUB loads of times and resented it every time. Isn’t it just a way to legitimise touting? If it’s all about getting people out of the house to have fun, why not limit the price that can be charged for a ticket? It’s hard not to see these third-party resellers as kind of affiliate tricksters, taking money from fans and musicians. So ethics are never top of mind, which I guess is why striking oil is a useful metaphor to use in an ad – the message? Dirty money in a jaunty setting. Now that’s not really OK, is it?