I find a lot of work coming out of the BBH stable these days very hit or miss. Their rather grandiose opinion of themselves isn’t always warranted when you see a lot of the very average work they churn out these days.
But their Google work?
Them at their best. Touching stories. Beautifully told. Engaging. Shareable. More of this please BBH…
Iain G. Morrison rather fancies himself a new man bag…
It’s hard being number one. It’s even harder staying number one, as British Airways continue to prove.
Back in the day when they were the world’s favourite airline, the Saatchi & Saatchi boys and girls delivered campaign after campaign of pretty decent stuff. People loved the brand. People wanted to fly BA.
Then Virgin happened along. All the Asian airlines heavily invested in their product. BA stood still. They faltered. They fell behind. Worse still, BBH never seem to have taken them anywhere near the highs of years gone by. Dolphin clouds and racing luggage (which we all know so often gets lost in the depths of LHR), failed to capture the hearts the way a hint of the flower song from Lakme could do. So, a quick trip down memory lane. May look dated, but still…
Anyway, to the new BA campaign. As a domestic sponsor of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, it’s time to activate the sponsorship. Many are claiming it’s a bold message. An airline trying to convince Brits to stay at home. It’s not.
Research from previous games has shown people who left the country during games time come home, and feel they’ve missed out. Moments that pull the nation together, both good and bad. Many shared moments of national pride. Hopefully a few medals. Real highs that forgive all the transport infrastructure issues and minor inconveniences. But BA telling us to stay home and support Team GB? I just don’t buy it.
This message feels as though it should be coming from the tourist board, not the former flag carrier. It’s sad that BBH haven’t been able to generate any great work for BA, and even sadder that the ‘fly a plane down my street’ is a much heralded, and massively overhyped part of the campaign.
I don’t like knocking BA. They’re a brand I’m genuinely fond of. But they, and indeed we, deserve far, far better than this…
Iain G. Morrison is a senior marketer that will probably be flying Virgin Atlantic next time he leaves Blighty…
I’ve been very critical of much of British Airways’ marketing over the past few years. Since they left the Saatchi crew, their work (a little like their service), has been somewhat lacklustre. However much I dislike the campaign personally, all the PR they’re pushing out says it’s working, so who am I to judge? Bravo…
However, this new spot to maximise their Olympic sponsorship isn’t half bad. It’s not brilliant, but it’s a massive improvement on the bilge BBH have been trotting out for them these past few years.
I remain to be convinced they are ready, mind.
I’m a massive supporter of the Games and the economic benefit they’ll bring to Britain in 2012 and beyond. But our creaky infrastructure can barely cope at the best of times, let alone with a glut of additional Games time visitors. I truly hope I’m wrong on that one mind. Time will tell…
Iain G. Morrison will be going for gold this summer. In the gin drinking finals, of course. Good odds on a medal…
No, not our NHS. I’m referring to the mammoth 90 second spot, that I believe’ll be airing during the Coronation Street ad-break on Friday night. The media agency / ITV must’ve creamed their knicker$…
The ‘big unveil’ of new TVC’s feels like something of a relic these days. I’m not calling time on TV advertising, of course it still has its place and will for many years to come. Nor am I going to give you my thoughts on TV / online convergence. I haven’t had enough coffee and it’ll be nothing you haven’t already heard…
But I am left feeling somewhat cold by this latest Adam & Eve offering for John Lewis.
I get the cradle to grave thing, we’re there for you at every key life stage. I also get the ‘never knowingly undersold’ proposition. But this spot just lacks emotional warmth (or I have ice running through my veins). I didn’t warm to the couple / their family / their journey through ‘life’. I find the music bordering on morbid.
A stark contrast to the stunning ad they ran at Xmas that has combined a stand-out (and very emotionally rich), track; with a perfect slice of emotional Christmas kiddy oriented joy. Whilst I’m sure this’ll do well with the target audience, I can’t help but feeling the music was something of a compromise.
On a more upbeat note, if you want to see how cradle to grave SHOULD be done, then check out this BBH / X-box oldie. A true corker…
Iain G. Morrison is a senior marketer in the British Tourism Industry. And is hopefully that Waitrose will become his local supermarket if I buy the flat I’ve got my eye on…
Occasionally (whether clients or agencies choose to admit it), part of the brief is ‘get my brand / product in the papers. Extend the campaign however you can, get journalists writing about us, get us on the news… Anything, just make something magical happen that takes the campaign beyond what we can actually afford…’.
Often, this can transform a modest campaign budget into something that becomes not just tomorrow’s water-cooler moment, but rumbles on for days, weeks if you are really, really lucky. Charities often deploy this tactic to maximum effect, anyone remember the baby shooting up, or with a cockroach crawling out of it’s mouth? A killer combination (well done BBH / NSPCC).
The latest storm in a tea-cup, is Benilyn’s new campaign, encouraging (shock horror), people who are unwell with cold / flu type symptoms to call in sick. Business leaders are up in arms, complaining about sickness costing the economy some £13 billion a year (I wonder how much poor management costs the economy), and the Daily Mail brigade have yet another reason to give an unapproving sniff to the biggest threat to their well-being since the last biggest threat to their well-being..
Yet, the agency that created the ad (and no doubt stage managed the timely release of certain snippets to the press), claim that many managers would rather ill people stay at home, get well, and not martyr into work.
When they soldier on, they are generally markedly less productive than normal, and run the risk infecting those around them. (For those of us in London, an hour home on the underground should always see to that irrespective of who has what bug in the office).
The campaign line, ‘Take a Benilyn day’ didn’t cause the majority of the furore however. That came from the very simple, engaging website (takeabenilynday.co.uk), which offers ideas on what to do on your bed ridden sick day, and (cue Daily Mail shock), how to make the all important call to the boss. Sadly, the head under the duvet technique is not recommended, or even cited. Have a look at the site. It’s worth the 5 minute investment, if nothing else to chuckle at those that have a ‘formal boss’. Poor dears…
All in all, this showcases an exercise in a well briefed agency (that understands its client, their product, their limits, the consumer all combined with a killer insight and a keen team of people who understand how to stage manage the campaign to the wider media in order to make that small budget go that bit further.
One would presume a promotion for the marketing manager is in the offing, the relationship is further embedded with the agency, and that all parties understood EXACTLY what they were doing, risks and all, as these projects are prone to failure, or backfire.
Kudos to you all, but I’ll still be sticking with lemsip…
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