I don't think social media is the future.
I think it's a game we've been in as an industry since day one.
If you boil it down, work that has social media at its centre is work that lets people in. Haven't we always searched for work that the consumer would hold close to their hearts? That your mum would tell her friends about? Work we hold up as our finest tends to have something about it that people simply can't ignore.
Tinder. The spark, that turns to wildfire when a piece of brilliance lands in the lap of the public. Let's see how flammable this week's selection is.
Peugeot (3). A family. A car. Oh, and Woody. One of the most iconic 3D mapped celebrities of our age. The briefing might have gone something like this: "So Woody is the tinder, how can we use him in an original way? How can he get the public involved in our brand? How can he do something the world talks about? Nah, let's just get him to dance about looking for his hat, then flip the seats up and down."
Opportunity missed. Flammable? Given the choice, I'd cremate this ad.
Haven't tactical ads always been social media? Before we could engage in debate online, it was our industry's way of having an idea "in real time". Tactical work finds tinder already in existence and piggybacks it, attaching a brand to the moment. The KitKat (1) ad does that sweetly, placing itself with elegance on the tail end of something we all enjoyed.
It's easier to spot tinder in online work because the medium is interactive. This also means it's easier to spot the faults or frailties in a piece of work. The "Where The Wild Things Are" Swedish trolls for Visit Sweden (4) request that we spend our time discovering them in order to win a weekend away. If I were a "young professional", would I really be happy with a transaction where I gave up my time to find hairy Moomins in a forest? Nah, I'd be on Yimmy's Yayo, finding "art". Like a cheap firework, there is entertainment here, but only briefly.
Foster's (6) starts fires for me with "good call". It's a pub-friendly piece of language that sits on the end of a confident, crafted TV ad. That difficult blend of optimism and comedy are treated with a lightness of touch that really works. I'd fan the flames on this one.
The people's Post Office (2) tries to involve the people, I guess. They seemed to have picked the least inspiring of the great unwashed, however, and then used them to make a point with very little energy. As a brand involved in the lives of so many, and with so much tinder to be found in the moments that mail creates, this work is lazy in its attempt to stoke things up.
On to BT Vision (5), a brand whose flame has been ably stoked for some time now by Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO, doing the job it needs to with a clever and sometimes tender tone of voice. This feels different, though. In an attempt to piggyback the globally fuelled excitement surrounding football, they race into the now tired format of the tunnel, fronted by the only players that must have been left in the country during the shoot.
Perhaps burning brightly as a script, this falls flat in its execution, lacking either the scale of great sports work and the charm of BT's previous efforts.
The flames crackle to embers, the light dims.
As the fire in my belly dies down, I'll leave you with a thought.
Let's all stop trying to bolt social media on to the work we're writing. Let's make every piece of work social media. How do we do that?
We take our work. Pin it on the wall. Take a step back and simply continue to ask ourselves that age-old question: Would anyone really care?
TEACHER - Marc Lewis, dean, School of Communication Arts
If you have ever stumbled out of any of Soho's public houses, you might be familiar with some of the hazardous side-effects of making uninformed assumptions.
She looks cute.
Oh, she's got an Adam's apple.
When Campaign invited me to share my thoughts, I made three assumptions.
Being the dean of the ad-industry funded School of Communication Arts, the second-to-last thing I wanted to do was upset any of the agencies that support us because their money helps to fund so many scholarships. The last thing I wanted to do was upset any of the creatives who produced the work that I was being asked to review. Hundreds of creatives have agreed to become mentors and hang out with the students in our studio.
I assumed that agreeing to contribute to Private View would be a poisoned chalice. It was inevitable that I would end up insulting one of our sponsoring agencies or one of our creative mentors.
My third assumption was that I wouldn't be shown a decent digital integrated social media campaign.
Glue has produced something halfway decent in the Troll Spotters Club for Visit Sweden (4). The premise of the idea is that people spot trolls on webcams hosted on www.trollspotters.com to win prizes. The site looks slick and has Twitter and Facebook features. While spotting trolls, people get to see some of Sweden's natural charms.
Not those natural charms. Beaches, lakes, fields.
At time of writing (8 July), 1,259 trolls have been spotted and 38 people are following the Trollspotters Twitter account. The Twitter feed Tweets clues for finding trolls on the webcams, which is a cute idea. Why so few followers? What is Glue going to do about it? Can it iterate quickly to get more traffic?
Traffic streaming out of SW19 after Isner's epic 70-68 match were treated to something much rarer than Swedish trolls - a brilliant tactical ad. Nearly two weeks after the event, people are still Tweeting about how they watched the game and spotted the KitKat (1) ad on their way home. To the team behind this ad, please take a break from JWT for a day to mentor the kids in our studio.
The Foster's (6) ad is funny enough for me not to be annoyed that I can't fast-forward television commercials while on Private View duty, although anyone still laughing at the Carol Vorderman gag on the third time of hearing it deserves to drink Foster's.
On paper, the idea of Peugeot (3) using Toy Story as a vehicle to sell its seven-seater "family car" is genius. Peugeot must have thought that the coming together of creative talent from Euro RSCG and Disney/Pixar would be box-office gold. Sadly, this ad is more "straight to DVD".
Advertising a post office service must be tricky, because it would be counterproductive showing any of its branches. My nearest post office is in a convenience store, which is just as well because I need the sugar to keep me going while waiting my turn in the queue.
For me, the selling point should have been that the Post Office (2) delivers currency to my door for just the price of a stamp. Instead, the commercial just showed all the people I hope I never meet on my holidays. Will it do the business? Maybe. Will it become one of those game-changing moments, when the Post Office changes the way we buy our foreign currency? Will we be talking about this campaign for years to come? I doubt it.
Which just leaves the BT Vision (5) ad by Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO.
I should disclose that AMV BBDO is the School of Communication Arts' most generous sponsor. It provides us with more money and more of its staff than any other agency. I have nothing except positive things to say about it.
Project: The longest tennis match ever
Client: Nestle KitKat
Brief: Create a topical ad
Agency: JWT London
Writers/art directors: Rob Welch, Naz Nazli
2. POST OFFICE
Project: The New People's Post Office
Client: Caroline Bates, director of brand and communications, Post
Writer/art director: Mother
Director: Paul Gay
Production company: Hungry Man
Exposure: TV, cinema
Project: Toy Story
Clients: Olivier Gandolfo, Nathalie Lemaitre, Dorota Kozlowska, Gilles
Pougeade, Anne Fenninger, Isabelle Puiatti; Peugeot
Agency: Euro RSCG
Writer: David Soussan
Art director: Christophe Vino
Director: Tom Kan
Production company: Quad
4. VISIT SWEDEN
Project: Skane Troll Spotters Club
Client: Maria Johnson, marketing and communications manager, Visit
Agency: Glue Isobar
Writer: Lewis Raven
Art director: Adam King
Designer: Raphael Campos
Production company: Superglue
5. BT VISION
Project: BT tunnel
Client: David Still, head of consumer communications and head of
marketing, BT Vision
Agency: Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO
Writer: Phil Martin
Art director: Brian Campbell
Director: Declan Lowney
Production company: HSI
Exposure: UK TV, VoD, internet
Project: Girlfriend's mum
Client: Gayle Harrison, marketing manager, Foster's
Brief: Capture Foster's unique "no worries" attitude
Agency: Adam & Eve
Writers/art directors: Ben Priest, Sidney Rogers, Harry Bugden
Director: Tim Bullock
Production company: Hungry Man
Exposure: National TV