A pounds 3 million RAF recruitment TV advertising campaign
featuring dramatic footage of engineers in action in Kosovo will launch
on 1 August.
Created by J. Walter Thompson for COI Communications, the ad aims to
recruit engineers by stressing the importance of teamwork and the
excitement of overseas operations.
JWT’s account director, Rob Harwood-Matthews, said: ’The ad makes heroes
of all the members of the team, not just the pilots.’
Directed by Frank Budgen, the 40-second RAF spot is the third in the
series of ’Rise above the rest’ ads that began in 1998.
It incorporates documentary-style footage of the re-opening of Pristina
airport, featuring real RAF personnel and Hercules aircraft.
The ad tricks the audience into thinking they are watching a terrorist
bombing raid as masked engineers work under the cover of darkness.
In fact, the engineers are laying cable to restore the runway lights,
but this only becomes apparent when an engineer pushes down on a
detonator and, instead of a bomb exploding, the runway is flooded with
The ad was shot over several nights using video, digi-beta and even CCTV
security cameras - there were up to nine different cameras running at
any one time - to achieve the realism of war footage. It ends with the
tongue-in-cheek tagline: ’Some overseas travel involved.’
Harwood-Matthews added: ’We did not use a big showy soundtrack, just the
incidental sounds of running, breathing and the click of machinery to
create an air of tension.’
The ad will run on ITV, Channel 4 and ethnic channels on satellite TV to
try and raise the number of recruits from ethnic minorities. The
month-long TV push will be backed by press ads running throughout the
The ad was written by Trevor de Silva and art directed by Paul
The production company was Gorgeous Films. Media planning is by
MindShare and media buying by MediaVest.