The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]

The Difference Between Crispin & Other Agencies: Brains.
July 14, 2009, 6:07 am
Filed under: Comment

One of the things that annoys-the-crap-out-of-me is when you develop a global/regional campaign and then another of the clients rostered agencies develops the local campaign.

I’ve written about this before, however the reason it pisses me off so much is that quite often, they pay zero attention to the subtleties of the idea and just go in with both feet blazing.

One of campaigns that did my head in was LOWES work for LYNX/AXE.

Whilst it won a copious amount of awards, it was a very, very poor imitation of BBH’s work … turning the brand idea from ‘turns good girls, bad’ to something akin to ‘spray on shag’.

Of course they said it was to make it culturally relevant – and whilst I am a huge believer in localised relevance – too often this is an excuse agencies fall back on to basically justify whatever they want to produce because inherently, they hate the idea of having to follow someone else’s guidelines.

Don’t get me wrong, I understand that feeling … especially when some 2-bit agency mandates a template that gives you all the creative freedom of a boil-in-the-bag dinner … but I have found that if you are willing to truly understand the subtleties of the brand idea, then you have a damn sight more opportunity than you might otherwise think, especially if the agency who developed the original concept is one of the good guys.

Of course it’s not just the agencies fault.

Let’s face it, work always has to be approved so I always find it amusing when a client slags off an agency for some work they produced when often, they had a disproportionate amount of influence in its overall creation …

The reason I write this is because recently Burger King have copped huge amounts of flack for some ads they’ve run.

The pic at the top of this post is a perfect example.

Created in Singapore, this lowest-common-denominator, juvenile, sexist shit bears no resemblance to the beautifully crafted and executed Crispin brand idea of ‘It’s Good To Be King’ …

“Ahhhhh, but it generated loads of publicity” I hear you cry.

Yeah it did … apart from the fact it’s a rip-off another crap ad … anyone can get PR with this approach and even then it doesn’t mean people will actually buy the bloody thing.

This sort of bollocks does adland a huge disservice because we get known as specialists in shock rather than in persuasion – which is probably one of the reasons why clients don’t value what we do with the level of remuneration many of us deserve and who can blame them.

Does sex sell?

Sure it does, but this isn’t sex, this is pre-pubescent bullshit and say’s more about the guys at the agency/client than it does of the society they are supposedly meant to impact.

[Though given Singapore’s myopic and patriarchal society, maybe it was very appropriate]

Anyway, to further highlight that there are a lot of people in adland/marketing that don’t deserve to have the word ‘creative’ anywhere in their job description – news has just come in of one of the most culturally insensitive pieces of work I’ve heard of in a long time.

Yes I know the ad was developed/run in Spain – not known as the most open country for accepting other cultures/nationalities [let alone other religions] – but even then, it shouldn’t take a rocket scientist to know this was a crass move and I hope the agency and the client behind this cop all the shit they deserve.

What I find funny is that Crispin’s often cop flack for creating jockvertising … and whilst some of their work has ‘room for improvement’ … they are still one of the most creative, inventive and intelligent agencies in the World and when you compare what they do for BK to what other agencies produce, I think it is only fair to call them advertising Einstein’s.

Whilst disruption is an integral component of effective advertising, just making people notice or talk about stuff is not enough – it may of been in the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s – but in a World weighed down with choice, parity and messaging, adland has to work/think/act harder to persuade and motivate and it’s just a shame too few are willing to do it because it ultimately undermines everyone – especially those who like me, believe this industry still has a lot to offer.

16 Comments so far
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for someone who spends more time fucking blogging than working youd think you would have enough time making sure all your fucking links work.

the climax of your fucking post ends up like a wet weekend in blackpool because the link you present with fucking fanfare points us to the shit singapore bk blowjob ad youve already bitched out.

sort yourself out campbell, were busy fuckers you know.

Comment by andy@cynic

It’s official: Dodds is more sensitive than Andy.


Because he too noticed I’d be slack with my blog links but rather than publically show me up for the fool I am, he sent a gentle email ‘FYI’.

And there I was thinking Dodds was the thinking mans bastard.

Anyway it’s fixed now. Sorry.

Comment by Rob

Cheap ad that makes the product look even cheaper. But if this ad was produced in Singapore, why does it use a western model?

Comment by martin

Oh you know Martin – they’d of told the client it gave the brand ‘aspirational appeal’ due to its blatantly Western association or some other outdated ‘truism’ of connecting with Asian society.

I’m amazed and disgusted at how stupid agencies and clients think their society is … but then as no one looks at advertising anymore, the masses probably don’t even notice it, ha!

Comment by Rob

As one of the team behind the original BK strategy, I look at those ads and weep.

It will be interesting to see how BK react as they are already under pressure from franchisees in relation to how the company treats and responds to them and their needs.

Did Billy do these?

Comment by Pete

Im sorry, but there has to be some link with ‘It’ll ‘BLOW’ your mind away’ and the blow up doll. Deep stuff…haha

saying blow three times has made it lose its meaning

Comment by Jacob

So are you saying the Singapore ad is targeting terrorists who like blow jobs Jacob?

I thought you would be morally offended Pete – but you should of heard Colin when I told him, ha.

As for Billy – I know he has the sensitivity of a 1980’s heavy metal lead singer, but even he wouldn’t stoop so low. He’d like to – but he wouldn’t.

Comment by Rob

Billy doesn’t need to stoop,

Comment by john

How depressing for the industry that shit like this gets through clients…

Comment by Rob Mortimer

After reports the crispin work has achieved awareness but not enough sales, could this be their way of targeting lucrative niche groups?

Didn’t realize virgins and religous fundamentalists represented such a big opportunity but what other reason could there be for this creative approach?

BK: feed your darkest need.

Comment by DH

You obviously don’t know him as well as we do John …

And David, you might be right – but given you’ve used that prop at least twice to my knowledge, I think it might be pushing it to expect BK to buy it as well. 🙂

Comment by Rob

fucking hell dave, you recycle more than fucking gore.

and its obvious billy didnt write it, hed have the burger sliding between the models tits.

Comment by andy@cynic

The only tits Billy knows are the ones who live above his pad and complain about the parties.

Comment by DH

i could probably just cope with the dumb cock joke and the blow up doll, but the ‘it just tastes better’ is takin’ the piss! geez – no one sucks cock for the taste. same as BK i guess – no one eats that for the taste either. and they sure as fuck won’t now..

Comment by lauren

i dont know if lauren has just shattered the male populations dreams or made herself our all encompassing god but i fucking love the foul mouthed lady. but im not going to let her kiss me till shes gargled 3 gallons of plax.

Comment by andy@cynic

Is this how sad your lives are? Taking the piss out of someone too important and busy to come and read your sad little comments each day?

Andy and Dave are right though.

Comment by Billy Whizz

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