Branding

The Gentleman’s Wager. Johnnie Walker Blue.

A year ago Johnnie Walker Blue released an online short film titled Gentleman’s Wager. The film featured Jude Law and  Giancarlo Giannini, a big budget and some serious production value. Like other big brands Johnnie Walker’s foray into the long format online commercial was a winner. To follow it up they have released the second short film, and like last year where the bet was for Giannini’s rare yacht, this year it is for a rare Italian sports car.

The new 11-minute film, is another wager, this time starting at Giannini’s beautiful Italian palazzo, and a road race from just south of Rome to Monaco.

Along the way Law meets a beautiful woman, played by Chinese actress Zhao Wei and helps her fix her car. He breaks down on several occasions, and arrives in Monaco with moments to spare. In addition to Zhoa, there are cameos by Formula 1 heroes Mika Häkkinen and Jenson Buttonas well.

Like the first film, this one was once again directed by Jake Scott through RSA. The film is gorgeously shot in the world of the uber rich, and the production value is just as good as the first. Once again we have a big budget production exclusively for the internet, and while some might say this is a huge risk, I think this kind of storytelling to extend the brand is going to pay off.

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A Land Rover Valentine.

Over the last decade as online video has become more available and ubiquitous, brands have begun to turn to long form video advertising in the form of storytelling. A great example of this is a video produced by Land Rover that tells the story of a 1957 Series 1, bought by 4 friends in college that fell into disrepair. The friends were forced to sell the car, and Land Rover stepped in to help.

 

I love this on so many levels. The production quality of the video is as good as it gets. The story is compelling and draws you in. It doesn’t fell like an ad per say, because Land Rover isn’t trying to sell you something. It demonstrates brand loyalty. It hooks you in and gets you to watch the entire 3 minute video because you really want to see the pay off when the friends are reunited with their beloved Land Rover.

Land Rover has built a small single page microsite that gives even more back story on the car and restoration. On the page, the only ad hooks are the in the header and right menu system with ties to the current vehicles, find a dealer,  sign up for the newsletter etc. It’s a subtle display of effective integrated advertising and storytelling hat uses YouTube to spread the word. The video went up on Valentine’s Day. In less than 3 days it has had almost 300,000 views. Not bad at all.

The Mojito, The Maestro, and the Musician.

M&C Saatchi has created a series of 3 advertisements for Havana Club Rum. The spots are running on TV, but the extended versions on youTube are where they really shine. Each spot taps into a storyline that is distinctive about Cuban culture and it’s relationship to the product. The tie in is handled so well. Subtle, not in your face with little or no mention of the actual product. Each spot has a really nice look to it capturing Cuba, and the people that live there. The story lines for all three are rock solid and the editing and post work is fantastic. It’s to bad no one is willing to pony up the money for an extended media buy for these. I guarantee people would watch the full minute and a half version on TV given the chance.

IKEA’s “BookBook”, Better Than an iPhone.

With IKEA opening in Kansas City later this week, the city is getting blanketed with catalogs. Practically everyone I know has received one in their mailbox in the last two weeks. With the iPhone 6 dropping in about two weeks IKEA has upstaged Apple with a pretty fun spoof on the classic Apple product ad with a new video “Experience the power of a bookbook™”, Created by BBH. This is so spot on to the Apple look and feel for branding and product promotion, and IKEA / BBH simply nail it with a good dose of humor thrown in.

The Rolex Way.

Rolex has launched a new online video through its YouTube channel titled “The Rolex Way”. The two minute spot features a blend of live action footage, CG, and slow motions shots, combined with creative editing, and a well written script. The clip starts with a blend of CG papers floating past what looks like a live action shot of the Rolex headquarters.This entire opening scene could all be CG but it looks like a blend of the two. Moving through to an interior shot there is a tribute to the founder before a really nice post move into the live action shot of a person forging a rolex casement, with a really nice time re-mapped shot of hot molten steel hitting the crucible  before  swinging back to the pages of rRolex history and more solid CG work. This is a really well thought out spot with nice camera moves, timing, and a script that reinforces the brand, the quality of the product and the dedication to producing some of the worlds finest time pieces.  Nice work for the folks at Rolex.