Just under a week ago, Paris was rocked for the second time in less than year by senseless terrorist attacks. Over the last 6 days the news has been filled with more information about the attacks, and the possibility of more. In times like these it is often hard to imagine how much good is going on in the world, but occasionally we get reminded of it. Today I was looking around for visual inspiration for a new project I am starting when I came across this animated short by Hue&Cry for CARE. The animation is fantastic, the script and narration filled with hope, as it tells the story of how CARE started and evolved over the last 70 years.
It’s always tough to tell a brand’s story. It’s even tougher when the story spans 70 years of evolution and progress. But the toughest part about telling this story was truly honoring one of the oldest and greatest humanitarian foundations on the globe.’Power of a Box’ touches on the history, the evolution and the sheer scope of the work that the CARE Foundation has been delivering since the first half of last century, an effort that has improved the lives of a billion people in 90 countries around the world.
Then we took it another step. The core message and visuals of ’Power of a Box’ have been translated to an additional :30 and :15, as well as print, digital and social medias to create a new campaign for CARE. Our hope is that an organization that was at one point the ‘go to’ for humanitarian contribution will again become a house hold name that people know and trust, and we look forward to continuing to push their message and help them deliver lasting change.
Written and Directed by Hue&Cry Original Music and Sound Design by Antfood Narrated by Matt Dillon
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.
We see them everyday. They are impossible to avoid, and yet most of us rarely think of them. I’m talking about automotive logos. The badge that is on the front and rear of almost every single piece of rolling stock in the world.
Those logos are not just the visual symbol of the manufacturer, they are the brand that represents what you think of in terms of quality, luxury, economy, fit and finish.
The infographic below from Car Dealer Review shows how various automotive logos have evolved over time. Some subtlety, others radically. Some of the more interesting examples are the older and smaller brands like Fiat, or Aston Martin.
Some of these I like better than others. I think Burger King should seriously consider going with the hand lettered logo created by Sara Marshall as part of her lettering project Brand by Hand. Other’s like the Coca-Cola logo just aren’t doing it for me. None the less it’s an interesting project, especially when you consider just how hot hand lettering is these days.
One of the the things I really love about these is the skill of execution. By that I mean it is solid hand lettering, that looks good. Not some sketchbooky I don’t give a rip about things like kerning, stuff which seams to have gained huge ground in the design community as of late. As someone that learned how to hand letter decades ago by hand painting store front sings, I have a solid appreciation for the skills it takes to letter like this.
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.
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.
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.