CREATIVE STRATEGY: Let's raise our glasses to a witty press ad from Fairhills

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Fairhills: striking creative gets ethical message across
Fairhills: striking creative gets ethical message across

If there are such people as regular readers of 'Creative Strategy', they'll know that your reviewer has moments of despair at the general state of craftsmanship in our industry.

Press ads are a good (bad) example. Every week I come across, or am sent, some great work. Viral films. Internal comms. TV ads. Websites. Augmented reality. Experiential stunts. You name it. But does ink on paper ever get a look in? Too rarely.

So that’s why even a half-decent press ad gets my attention these days, and this one for Fairhills passes the test. It won’t win any gongs, but it’s not the usual rubbish.

While governments may change, one trend that remains a constant is the state wagging its finger at us. Among the many sins that upset Big Nanny is the British middle-class’s fondness for a glass of wine. 

"Drink responsibly" is now part of the packaging/advertising lexicon for any form of alcohol and our mental furniture of contemporary phrases.

As I was flicking through the pages of a ‘Big Issue’, my eye was caught by the headline: "Please drink even more responsibly".

Just for a nano-second, you think it’s the start of another lecture on the demon drink. But no. As the copy says: "Don’t worry, it’s not what you think. It’s simply about choosing a delicious wine that gives something back to the people who made it."

Excellent. Buy a New World wine and, for example, help a farmworker’s daughter in South Africa become a teacher. As if I needed an excuse. But now I’ve got a top-notch one.

Quirky and delicate typography for the headline is cupped by a sweet illustration of vines forming the shape of a wine goblet – and reflecting the Fairhills strapline: "Rooted in goodness".

It’s all been put together with some care. Even the timing of the ad reveals some intelligence, as it was placed in the run-up to Comic Relief – perfect to catch the likes of me in a charitable frame of mind.

I for one will raise a glass to the client and agency behind this campaign, and wish them every success.

Simon S Kershaw is a creative consultant and a former creative director at Craik Jones.

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