Barclays. A pounds 10 million sponsorship deal with British Cinema
is a great idea; it should bring a burst of energy into the relatively
dry world of high street banking.
Admittedly, I didn’t get to see the broadcast work (three short films to
be shown on trailer wheels). But the tone of the print work disappointed
me - it could have been more enthusiastic, less sober and bankerly. It’s
a pity, because the idea has the potential to be really talked
Incidentally, the competition prize is a chance to appear as an extra in
the follow-up to Four Weddings and a Funeral. My hairdresser appeared as
an extra in the original film, because he knew the producer. Gave me the
shock of my life when he popped up in a pew during the funeral
So, if you win this and you know me personally, please warn me so that I
don’t choke on my popcorn again.
Direct Line Insurance. The bleeping phone on wheels has probably annoyed
more people than even Nanette Newman and her queue of boy scouts -
although it’s undoubtedly worked brilliantly. In fact, one of the
reasons it’s so annoying is because you know it does work so well. (But
just because something works doesn’t mean it couldn’t work better, I
always say ...)
This is a very professional ad, exuding reassurance from every pore and
managing to answer a lot of pertinent questions. And the woman in the
circle who talks us through the sales bunny is a lot more interesting
than that bleeding phone on wheels. Sorry - that should read ’bleeping’.
Or, then again, maybe not.
Guinness. A very laudable attempt to encourage people to celebrate St
Patrick’s Day. (As if anybody I know needed any further encouragement.)
The ads are striking - I love the music - but a bit wearying on repeated
viewing. When I rang the phoneline, I found myself in a surreal snake
race entitled the Two Thousand Guinea Pigs. I still don’t know why.
No Smoking Day. A fabulous brief - I’ve given up several times
But getting the right tone of voice is incredibly difficult. Looking at
the grumpy fag wandering down the road with his suitcase (above the
not-very-witty legend ’send it packing’) makes me want to start again as
soon as possible. I remember A. N. Wilson writing once about how he only
smoked once a year - on No Smoking Day. I’m afraid I have the same
reaction to these vestiges of Nanny State lecturing.
I won’t, though. Because I’m tough.
And it occurs to me that I may be being a bit harsh. It’s quite possible
that the cartoon figure is designed to work via young children - the
’pester power’ of young kids is a very potent approach in this area.
’Smoking’s bad for you, Daddy’, coming from a seven-year-old, is a tough
one to answer.
Which is why, when I burrowed into the leaflets they sent through, I was
very grateful to find lots of helpful stuff.
Steve Henry is a creative partner of HHCL and Partners
Agency: J. Walter Thompson Client: Barclays
Objective: Raise awareness of Barclays among under 25s
Account handling: Harry MacAuslan, Sabine Richards, Claudine Spong
Copywriter: Andrew Singleton
Art director: Jono Wardle
Creative director: Jaspar Shelbourne
Agency: Mortimer Whittaker O’Sullivan
Client: Direct Line
Objective: Tell people about the Direct Line service
Account handling: Tim Mortimer
Copywriter: John O’Sullivan
Art director: Chris Whittaker
Objective: Ensure Guinness’s ownership of
St Patrick’s Day
Account handling: Jo Jones, Paul Becque
Copywriter: Mark Beeching
Art director: Mark Beeching
Creative director: Mark Beeching
NO SMOKING CAMPAIGN
Agency: Zero 2 Design Client: Health Education Authority
Objective: Provide encouragement, help and support to smokers who
want to quit
Account handling: Josh Waldhorn, Paul Price
Copywriters: Josh Waldhorn, Paul Price
Art directors: Josh Waldhorn, Paul Price
Creative director: Josh Waldhorn