It’s been a busy week for French clothing brand Lacoste and its creative agency BETC Paris. As well as launching the second instalment of its Save Our Species campaign for Biological Diversity Day, it released a new ad capturing the deep emotion and turbulence of an argument within a relationship.
As the couple face off in their apartment, a gaping hole appears in the floor to portray the intensity of the situation before everything crumbles around them. Below, BETC creative directors Olivier Aumard and Aurélie Scalabre explain how the project came together and what it represents for the brand.
What was the brief?
After the last campaign that celebrated the timeless elegance of the Lacoste polos with a film showing a love story across the decades, we wanted to get back to something more rooted in the everyday life, in reality. After having stood the test of time, it was time for the Lacoste elegance to stand the test of life. The Lacoste elegance exceeds a purely stylistic dimension; it is a way of life: being elegant in every situation, even in adversity. This was the challenge that our client wanted to highlight with the new campaign.
How did the initial conversations/pitch/brainstorming phase go?
As usual for this kind of project we had been exploring a lot of different routes, including some playful scripts that were less intense and not as emotional. But in the end, we had to admit that the two precedent campaigns, The Big Leap and Timeless had installed a beautiful and really impactful territory for Lacoste, so we decided to make an other epic story.
Tell us about the concept…
At first glance, it may seem similar to both The Big Leap and Timeless in the sense that the film features a couple. This time, however, it’s less of a happy, overly romantic love story, instead we witness a destructive fight and a couple on the verge of tearing itself apart. Their home as a symbol of their love literally falls apart and crumbles around them as the heated argument escalates. We wanted the film to have a raw emotional feeling to it and we’re sure more people will recognise themselves in this than the previous films.
The Big Leap
What was the biggest challenge on the production?
Once the client had bought into the idea and the script, we threw ourselves into an ambitious production project. On paper, everything made sense but once we actually had to create and imagine the different parts of the building falling into pieces it was a different story…
The directors Megaforce came up with little mockups of the flat that helped us to understand exactly how it would look. And obviously, the post production was as intense as the shooting. We spent days and nights on some shots. Megaforce were 100% committed for months, all the way to the final post production details that were made in London by Time Based Arts.
What’s the main message of the campaign and why is it important?
One again, this is all about elegance but not only the stylistic dimension. That’s why we called it Crocodile Inside. In the film, our couple found the inner strength to calm down, remember what really matters and fight to save it. Alongside the film, there is a print campaign and social media content with personalities who all have special backgrounds, have fought to move forward and achieve their dreams. Everything is signed with #CrocodileInside, which sums up all the values of the brand: tenacity, fair play, creativity and freedom of spirit.
Why will the final assets resonate with consumers?
Because the core insight will resonate. Being elegant in life is usually quite easy, but the real test comes when we’re challenged, when we face adversity. Acting elegantly in these circumstances is much more difficult and that is the kind of elegance our assets want to celebrate.
What’s the most interesting thing or unique fact about the campaign that will help it cut through?
For the first time we decided not to idealise the romantic relationship. We show an intense argument, something that’s pretty rare in advertsing but when your signature is Life is a beautiful sport, we have to also take on the tricky topics. By showing that, you give strength to the signature. It’s a meaningful one and we can’t wait to explore all the possibilities it gives us.
How long did it take to make from inception to delivery?
Almost a year. It has been a long journey but a project like this deserves all the energy we’ve put into it.
What do you hope it achieves for the brand now it’s out?
We hope to build an even stronger bond with the audience by revealing more deeply what Lacoste stands for. After going back to the brand’s roots and DNA with the Timeless campaign we were willing to have a more active role in people’s life, to be part of the conversation and reinforce the brand desirability.
How satisfying is it to have released the campaign having worked so hard on it?
We are really happy obviously. It’s a great momentum for Lacoste, with a lot of amazing projects like Save our Species, the partnership with the International Union for Conservation of Nature, and a lot to come.