This is the first of what I hope will be a regular feature – the three ads that made an impact on a top creative each month. Awards tell you that a group of creatives placed this or that ad at the top of its genre for creativity – or effectiveness. But personal stories about why top creatives love this or that piece of work? Well, they’re real insights.
David Ponce de Leon offered to go first. Nothing really got him excited this last month so he asked if he could give The Stable a summer edition instead. Of course, I said yes. The brilliant hijacking of the Australian Open broadcast by Special Group and Revolver Will O’Rourke would have got in anyway – and it really, really deserves it – but the Optus “If it’s not right, walk away” TVC by 72andSunny and Revolver’s Steve Roger from December? That wowed me too.
Uber Eats. Rafa Nadal.
David Ponce de Leon: I saw this during the Australian Open broadcast and I have to confess, it got me hook, line and sinker. After one of those moments when you’re looking distractedly at your mobile phone for a few seconds, you lift your gaze and you see Rafa on court in discussions with the referee, you can’t help but think, “OK, we’re back”. Alas, no. I was actually quite stunned at first. A bit like when you watch a candid camera video on YouTube or Facebook. The difference being that I was the one being punk’d in real time. This is what all great advertising is all about – surprising, disrupting and entertaining. The other campaign executions with Gavrilova, Kyrgios and Wozniacki are great too. Rafa stands out because of his profile and the fact he made it all the way to the final. It also got talked about all around the world, so the impact of the idea was felt beyond television. Great stuff.
Asahi. Enter Asahi.
DPL: I think it’s fair to say that Australian beer commercials have lost the plot in recent years. Marketers continue to mirror their audiences rather than provoke and inspire them with original and interesting brand stories. That’s what makes this latest number for Asahi stand out and get noticed. It’s a visual experience like no other. It keeps you glued to the screen watching until the end. It’s grand, cinematic and a little bit weird. But most of all, it’s so very Japanese. It’s saying to me in an unforgettable way, “When you drink Asahi, you drink Japan,” which makes sense for Japan’s No.1 Beer. A great effort.
Optus Coverage Commitment.
DPL: I saw this a couple of months ago at the start of summer and I remember thinking, “This is the best Optus commercial I’ve seen in a long time.” It has all the hallmarks of a great film. It takes you on a journey, it keeps you interested until the end, you feel for the protagonist and his story and that makes you want to watch all the way through. And at the end, it rewards you with a surprising twist that hammers the intended message, “If it’s not right, walk away,” into your brain. Impeccable craft only makes this little gem stand out even more. Each and every one of us has felt trapped by a crappy phone plan in some way or another. In fact, I feel exactly like that at the moment with my NBN plan, but I can’t exactly walk away from it, and neither can you. Bugger.