Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Something different for the Pharmaceutical Catagory

Often advertising done for this category is crap and boring showing happy children and mothers. The idea for "Scary Vegtables" came directly from my four-year old daughter. When I asked her why she didn't want to eat her veggies, she said they were scary and there you have it - straight from the err... her mouth. A big thanks also goes out to Wyeth Pharmaceuticals for beleiving in the idea.

The campaign was shot by Tommy Morris here in Dubai. We had a scary potato, but we burried it literally and it's now a healthy potato bush growing in my garden.

Nando's "Ramadan Kareem"

I was asked by Campaign Middle East to write an article on advertising during Ramadan. I criticized the lack of creativity when it comes to this Holy Month and I had to back up my words with action. We came up with this idea in the first week of Ramadan last year and after just seven days the spot was sold, produced and running in countries around the Middle East and South Africa. I've never turned a TV ad around so quickly and thanks to the team at Nando's and Filworks, we were able to make it happen before the end of Ramadan.

We also launched the ad virally and the spot created so much interest, that I was receiving calls from Europe, the States as well as from countries around the Middle East. People started posting the ads on their blogs, on YouTube and other advertising websites. Heated debates were born and at the end of the day, the feedback was incredibly positive.

The spot was directed by Peter Walker and myself and apart from appearing on the Shots reel and on Luerzer’s Archive, it went on to win a Gold at the 2007 Epica Awards.

Sony Quotes

Here's another Sony campaign, this time for surround sound headphones. The concept was easy enough to produce, but maybe a little harder to get. For those of you that are scratching your heads right now, the idea is simple - we chose characters that don't usually speak and had them tell us clearly what they thought about Sony's new headphones. The sound quality is so good, you can actually understand what they're saying. Hey, maybe it would have been better as a TV ad.

Become The Beat

Satisfied with the "Kick" spot, Sony briefed us with two more commercials for the African markets. One of the products was for a Hi-Fi. It was quite a technical spot to produce, but in the end we were pleasantly surprised. This spot was extremely well received by the target market.

The spot was produced by Velocity South Africa and was directed by a talented young director named Jeana Theron.

Suicidal Office Furniture

What a client. They came to us and said, "go forth and create". That's exactly what we did. They had a very small media budget so the ads had to be impactful. We decided to kill off a few pieces of office furniture and leave behind a few suicide notes.

This campaign was shot by Clive Stewart in some of the most dodgiest office buildings in Johannesburg. We had some laughs.


Between jobs I try and get a little pro-active and this is where Wonderbra comes in. Playing on the fact that all magazine that come into the UAE are censored with a black marker, we thought that this device would work great on a print ad. The ad was shot in our old office and I think Pete had a great time art directing this one.

Wonderbra "Censored" has done very well for us in terms of PR and awards. It has been showcased on Luerzer's Archive and many other websites and advertising Blogs around the world. It recently won a Gold at the 2006 Epica Awards in Europe and it was also a finalist at the inaugural World Press Awards.

I like the fact that this is an ad that could only have come from this region.

A kick-ass TVC for Sony

After proving ourselves in print, Sony allowed us to pitch for a Wega TVC that was to run in Africa and the Middle East during the Soccer World Cup. This was the first time that I was presenting a TV concept to Sony. I presented one idea to them and got very little response. I thought we had lost the pitch. Two weeks later they said yes.

Shot in South Africa, the Sony "Kick" spot was directed by Adrean De Sa Garces of Velocity. The spot has appeared on Shots and has won top spot on Shoot online and Boards. It also went on to win a Bronze at the 2007 Epica Awards.

One for the Judges

I felt the need to follow up the Sony "Paperclip" with two ads that I thought would do well. Unfortunately the whole world decided to do "Thin TV" type ads and these two became part of the mix. At least they both made it into Luerzers Archive.

Sony "MicroVault"

This neat little campaign done for Sony allowed us to be the first Middle East agency to be recognised in the prestigious D&AD Annual in London. It also picked up a finalist at The One Show and won the Grand Prix at the Middle East Campaign Awards. Unfortunately the judges at Cannes decided it was not even worth a finalist. Hey you win some and you don't. It's still one of my favourite campaigns and it's definitely one for the books.