P&G “Mom” Olympics TV ad

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Here is a US ad that has over 4 million views on YouTube.

Many will have participated in the website by sending “Mom” a message of thanks at: http://www.facebook.com/thankyoumom

It was mentioned by BBH’s John Hegarty at Cannes this year in his light-hearted session with Dan Wieden.

Being a fan of BBH, I keep an eye on his comments from Cannes and particularly liked his blunt assessment of much of the work he sees.

This P&G ad is treading familiar, but tricky emotive ground. The old “mom got me here through her dedication to supporting my sport” and presumably cleaning the kit with P&G product. It has been done before in relation to cleaning products, but this certainly isn’t about getting the grime out of the muddy shorts and sweatshirt sort of stuff.

Getting the emotional tone right in an ad is a very hard thing to do.

There was a brilliant P&G Pampers ad that got it right for parents.

On this P&G Olympics ad Hegarty said in conversation with Dan:

“If I had been passed that script and read it I might have vomited. The vomit factor was high if you got it wrong, but you really made it work.
“You have to make sure that the emotions are relevant. It really could have backfired on this.”

Yet again John reverts to the basic principle of relevance to prove the point.

The relevance of this ad to the journey, people and products is there and it is a truly inspiring ad for that reason. Consumers are savvy enough to recognise P&G’s involvement in this journey without seeing too many tubs and tumble dryers.

When I was lucky enough to work at BBH, John said that all advertising strategy needed to be “relevant, interesting and motivating”. I’ve stuck by this and found it to be the best test of a creative idea.

Clearly Hegarty still believes in the basics.

UK Cancer Council “the answer is plain” anti-smoking plain packaging ad

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The logo-free, drab dark brown plain cigarette...

So often we are told “what to do and what not to do”.

Seldom are we convinced of what we as individuals or society “should” be doing and why.

Government bodies have lost the art of advertising in favour of preaching or scare tactics.

This UK Cancer Council ad has a beautiful mix of advertising art and science. It intrigues you enough to interest you, hold your attention and then delivers a concluding message that is both powerful and absolutely believable. No drama, just the truth presented in a motivating manner.

It is completely relevant to the argument about plain packaging and will do more to motivate change than any number of government polls and opinions.

A great example of advertising resolving a complex argument with a simple and effective execution.