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The Week In Advertising

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Mars - Winning

Yes, we all know they're much smaller than they used to be (Mars have admitted as much). But they're still one of the leading chocolate brands, and need the power of advertising to maintain that position. Fortunately, the Mars people have whipped up a splendid clip here. As I mentioned last week, I'm soppy about dogs, so I may be a touch biased. However, surely only the most gloomy viewer would fail to find this highly entertaining. Of course, there's no point in telling us what a Mars is like. We've all tasted them (some more than most), so the purpose of the ad is to simply remind us the snack is there, the next time we're feeling peckish. Funnily enough, a pan-pipe playing hound might just do that. And when he's finished, he can come and live with me.
 

Sky Movies - HD

We've now reached a point where someone telling you they saw a film at an actual cinema is cause for surprise. On-demand, streaming, blue ray, Amazon Prime, Netflix - the competition for movie platforms is incredibly fierce. And as we'd expect, Sky is in there battling for market share, but I doubt this ad will make much impact. That old trope whereby it appears that characters edited from the pictures are refrerring to the service, has been done a thousand times before, and usually with more wit and judicious selection than this thing. The spot appears to have been cobbled together by somebody as they ate a sandwich and chatted to a mate on the iPhone. A reason to act is also lacking. Sky seem to be telling us they offer exactly what all the other platforms offer - if they have any exclusives, they aren't bothering to make a fuss about it; and it's exclusive content subscribers are looking for. Adding Meghan Trainor to the soundtrack hardly makes up for that. Given the attraction of blockbuster movies, this is disappointing stuff indeed. 
 

Tropicana - Passion

Well, if this isn't one of those 'universal' ads, made to run in a heap of territories with a different voice-over for each, I'll eat my orange hat. Sure, all those images of dazzlingly healthy folk larking about in the sun, are very lovely, but this kind of fluff just washes over most viewers. And what are Tropicana trying to say, exactly? As well as tasty juice, Vitamin C and so on, there's some ill-defined enthusiasm in the carton? How can we tell, and what does it taste like? Sorry, Tropicana. I know you're a premium fruit drink brand and all that, but there's nothing here to sway me away from your slightly cheaper competitors. Or a big bag of oranges, for that matter.
 

Twinings - Drink It All In

A couple of years ago, Twinings ran a fabulous ad which showed a woman 'finding herself' thanks to the tea. 'Gets you back to you' was the strapline. It was beautifully made and superbly executed. This is similar, but not quite as good. Which is odd, because the work claims to have been produced by BAFTA- winning directors (yes, plural - although quite why a 42 second advertisement needs more than one director, I couldn't say). Clearly, this isn't tripe. The animation works very well, and the feeling is one of uplifting brightness. It also has a very up-market and affluent vibe - very much Twinings' market position. No, the drawback is that the work hasn't moved on, and the concept has been rolled-out in a superior iteration before. Look: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ChxzFDi2nWg

Magnus Shaw is a copywriter and blogger.

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