The APG Creative Strategy Awards Shortlist 2009: PG Tips

Planned by: Mother
Agency: Mother
Brand: PG Tips
Campaign: Al and Monkey


We just loved the audacity of this paper. Partly because it cocks a snook at Kerry Katona, Elton John and Jade Goody. And partly because it contains the lines: "Tea needed to reclaim its relevance. At least that's what Shatner and I think."

But mostly we loved it because it tells the story of how planning helped to break one of the biggest taboos. Namely, that characters created to advertise a brand can only ever be linked to that brand. This is the story of how Mother came up with the "daringly pragmatic" decision to bring Monkey and Al, the much-loved characters they'd created for ITV Digital, into service as the new faces for the ailing PG Tips.

The paper itself is a treat. Written by Monkey himself, it details the seminal meetings with Mother that resurrected his career.

As we move into a world of branded entertainment, this paper raises important questions about how we develop and protect the "celebrities" we create - beyond the bounds of a single brand. The possibilities are fascinating. As Monkey says: "Maybe even Tony the Tiger will get his long-dreamed-of vodka gig."