Pistachios, pistachios, pistachios…the Wonderful Pisatachios Super Bowl spot won the night. If you haven't seen it... click here
For a while now, I have been working with agencies and watching TV wondering if our industry is truly creative or is it simply following a set of rules laid down by our advertising forefathers. There is plenty of work that is incredibly creative but sometimes I feel like the work is being bogged down with outdated rules. The two rules that I question the most are branding colors and calls to action. The pistachio ad brilliantly lampooned both creative laws in two, perfect 15 second spots.
Regarding branding colors, I get that you can own a color by constantly reinforcing it. Coke owns red, T-mobile probably owns pink. But if you are not spending buckets full of money, it can look ridiculous. The first Redds Apple Ale spot that I saw featured a guy in a red (really more like watermelon) colored hoodie. I am guessing that they had to custom make that hoodie because no one where a watermelon colored hoodie. I watched the spot and immediately thought that the agency was selling the client on the fact that the watermelon colored hoodie was what branded the spot.
Perhaps if they spend another four-hundred or five-hundred million dollars per year, for the next ten years, they will be the second most popular drink trying to own red. It is as if the client and agency somehow felt that plastering a spot with red and spending a few million dollars was going to get it done. I understand that they had to make the hoodie some color, so why not make it red. But all I was left with was the thought “what kind of tool wears a watermelon colored hoodie. I wouldn't want to drink the beer he drinks.”
The next rule of creative that I am not sure applies anymore is the call to action. I imagine for direct response work it is a good idea. But saying talk to your doctor about Crestor doesn’t make much sense to me. A call to action implies taking action now. Unless I am seeing this spot in a doctor’s office, I am not going to speak to him now about Crestor, so what is the point of the call to action. Calling GEICO now, makes sense. Telling me to pick up a box of Monkey-Chow next time I am at the grocery store, doesn’t make sense. There is too much time between the call and the action.
I understand that there are tons of people and issues influencing the creative work. Let’s just consider which rules we want to keep and which we want to eliminate. Once we are no longer bound by so many creative shackles, perhaps we can create new best practices that new generations of ad folks will have to follow.