insights, ironies and idiosyncrasies in communication and design

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Wednesday, 15 April 2009

Real bite.

After the recent furore concerning Middle Eastern/Asian scam work, (covered here by Anibus, here by Scamp and here by the Opinionated Sod) it's great to see some work from the region with real bite produced for a client that actually belongs to an agency.

And not only does this work tie in nicely with our penchant for pink/brown art direction, our continuing Easter chocolate theme and at least one other post featuring work involving teeth, it's also another, er, shining example of boundary-smashing stuff for Colgate.

If this runs, then really hats off to Y&R – for turning you back on interruptive/distractive advertising, putting creative before media buying and for taking on the logistical feat of embedding a piece of communication within the product of another brand. It was worth every gram of fat you put on chewing through however many Haagen-Dazs or Hershey's you did to get to the idea.

Via the consistently enlightening Angus Whines.


Rob @ Cynic said...

Maybe I'm cynical - but I would bet good money that will never see the light of day, even as a print ad [which would be missing the bigger opportunity of making it happen for real ]

Shame because at least this time its a nice idea ... but I sense another 4 letter word beginning with 'S' ... though it would also highlight the client being daft for not grasping this with both hands.

Rupert James said...

Thanks for the comment, Rob.

I remain full of optimism, but am totally behind your point about missed opportunities.

Indeed, if either Colgate or whatever ice cream brand the agency approaches don't go with this opportunity to increase the profile of their brand a hundred-fold then they are totally daft.

Hopefully the agency won't decide that the one or two mock ups floating around the creative department is existence enough of a campaign and enter the piece for awards anyway. If they do, then they don't deserve even one shiny trinket – as a giant opportunity to enhance their own brand image by proving themselves as a truly forward-thinking agency moving brands away from mass media and interruptive advertising and towards the future will have been lost.

Luckily I spend a lot of time in Bangkok and so I'll increase my Magnum intake while there and keep you posted.

Angus said...

Well said Rupert. I'd love to hear if you ever do come across it - keep us posted.

Thanks for the kind compliment by the way!

Rupert James said...

Thanks for the compliment too, Angus.

If I bite into anything tasty I'll post my research findings here.

Rob @ Cynic said...

Oh you'll come across it ... they will have done it once - sold to a local client or a local distributor - but only so they can enter it into awards.

And that's what upsets me most - because it is a sweet [pardon the pun] idea, its just not something Colgate will have approved on a corporate level ... which says more about them that anything I could do.

[And I doubt Magnum's owners - Unilever - would want to associate with [1] a competitior organisation, ie: Colgate Palmolive
and [2] a brand that reminds its customers what they've just had is bad for you]

So does that mean Y&R shouldn't of done it? No ... but it does mean Y&R shouldn't be allowed to enter it into a creative award because that is about commercial creativity, not just creativity ... even though too many people in the industry have forgotten that which is why we're in the state we're in.

An old - and brilliant - colleague of mine runs Y&R Bangkok, I'll be having words ...

Rupert James said...

It upsets me greatly too, Rob.

Award-seeking 'work' is self-serving in the extreme and about as relevant to the industry of advertising as fine art or graffiti.

More than that though it is the enemy of genuine creative marketing, because as long as scam work is celebrated the path to authentic, harder-to-achieve creative will too often be snubbed.

I applaud you on your name and shame approach. That's all we can do – other than continuing to try and produce genuine, mold-shattering, commerce-centred work ourselves.

If Y&R are smart they'll sell the toothbrush-stick idea to a Colgate-friendly ice-cream brand, promoting sensible eating – a balanced diet with an occasional treat. Chocolate and clean teeth are after all not mutually exclusive.

anubis said...

sorry to spoil the fun but; this idea has already been done for Johnson's tooth brushes by an agency named DPZ Propaganda, Sao Paulo. Creative director: Rui Branquinho, Art director: Cludia Issa, Photo: Roberto Donaire. it is featured in a book titled "Creative Advertising" Ideas and techniques from the world's best campaigns. author: Mario Pricken. Publisher: Thames & Hudson. Page: 45. ISBN: 0-500-28476-8.
I will soon post the visuals on

anubis said...

here it is

raquel raney said...

so clever.