It’s not every day that you win the gold, silver and bronze award
in a single awards category, but that’s what we achieved with the
Mercury work shown here. I say ’we’ because, having worked with my art
director, Roddy Kerr, for the past ten years, it’s not so much ’my best
shot’ as ’our best shot’.
Our mission was to convince the IT managers, financial directors and
chief executives in the UK’s top 500 companies that Mercury offers
significant cost savings over BT. Oh, and we had the budget to use some
’Forget the paper,’ we said. ’Let’s talk ideas.’ To the IT bod we sent a
sponge phone with the question: ’Is your telephone system still soaking
up your profits?’ To the financial director a briefcase full of money
(fake, I hasten to add) with a note declaring: ’Every year, British
industry is paying out millions needlessly. Talk about daylight
robbery.’ And to the chief executive we sent a leather wallet which,
when opened, simply asked: ’How long will you go on losing money?’ This
was my personal favourite.
We created a fictitious Central London Lost Property Office, placed the
wallet in a sealed polythene bag and dared the PA not to pass it on to
Suffice to say, the mailings worked. Targets were exceeded, meetings
fixed and presentations made. With all the fashionable talk about 3D
advertising, integration, disintegration, brand teams and the rest, I
can’t get away from the simple fact that this was just a stonking good
idea. It was fresh, original and fun. Isn’t that why we entered the
business in the first place?