work of 2018

work of 2018

The last year has brought about some great and some not so great campaigns from the industry.

We always like to focus on the positives, so whilst there have been some weak efforts, we’ve highlighted the strong performers who grabbed our attention and made it to the accolade of our ‘Work of the week’ and for all those loyal hashtaggers ‘#WorkOfTheWeek‘.

But rather than reel off all of the years’ winners, we’ve distilled it down to a few of our faves. And here they are:

Long Live the Local

Long live the local was a campaign from Britain’s Beer Alliance encouraging people to sign a petition so to not increase the imposed beer tax, as well as supporting the local pubs which play a vital role in most communities.

The increased beer tax would lead to the closure of more pubs in the UK and this campaign wanted to celebrate the role pubs play in British culture, which they represented perfectly in their ad.

Nike – US Open Serena Williams

In August, ahead of the US Open, Nike released a moving ad which featured footage of a 9-year-old Serena Williams being coached by her father Richard back in 1991.

Richard Williams provides the voiceover with words of encouragement for his daughter, even saying “This is you at the U.S Open”.

The early amateur footage and more recent professional scenes with Serena playing at the US Open switch back and fore with the consistent voice over from her coach and father.

The tagline ‘It’s only crazy until you do it’ hits home as we see early efforts and dreams coming to fruition, showing that with hard work anything is possible.

Elvie – Breast Pump

Elvie’s campaign to launch the world’s first silent breast pump taps into a well-known product flaw and subsequent mockery to those in the know.

The ad highlights the colloquial comparison with mums expressing and cows milking. It features four mums dancing in a barn filled with hay singing along to a track featuring the lyrics ‘in case you noticed these are not udders”.

Elvie represents their revolutionary and discretionary product feature in a fun but factual way that busts the taboos and boosts demand for their silent solution.

Reese’s Candy Converter

Perhaps easier than ‘taking candy from a baby’ was Reese’s Candy Converter, created Stateside for the Halloween holiday.

Reese’s created a vending machine that allowed trick or treaters to swap their unwanted candy in exchange for Reese’s.

In a good old fashioned, insight-led approach, Reese’s acted upon research which found that 90% of Americans have traded or wish they could have traded their unwanted candy. If people do it, they will use it.

And as an office of Reese’s lovers, is there a better trade up than a peanut butter cup?!

Aviation Gin & Virgin Atlantic

When Richard Branson’s Virgin Atlantic Airway’s partnered with Ryan Reynolds’ Aviation Gin, the two camera friendly ‘business’ men offered an alternative announcement video to mark the occasion.

Reynolds’ good humour allowed him to poke fun at his apparent lack of business acumen by taking a simple serving agreement to another level and announcing the ‘merger of the two companies’.

This business jargon bashing piss-take follows on from Reynolds’ refreshingly irreverent corporate comms.

So, that’s all for 2018. Keep tuned in 2019 where will bring the work that sparks our interest to the social-sphere on a weekly basis.

Follow Pretty Pragmatic on Twitter to see all the #WorkOfTheWeek winners in 2019: @PrettyPrag

could china be the real 2018 world cup winners?

With the World Cup in Russia now upon us, nations are prepped to support their team to potential World Cup glory. China finished bottom of their qualifying group, so they won’t be in it to win it. But might their brands be scoring a few awareness points along the way?

FIFA’s infamous issues over the past few years have impacted some of the major traditional sponsors renewing their contracts. This has shifted the goalposts allowing other, arguably lesser-known, brands to step-in and reach a global audience of around 3.5 billion fans.

China is expected to see the biggest increase in advertising spend as a consequence of the World Cup, with the competition generating $835m in additional ad spend. Chinese companies’ advertising spends double that of the US, around $400 million, and is far more than host nation Russia, at approximately $64 million.

Xi Jingping’s World Cup dream

In recent years China has seen a rapid growth for their football leagues with many well-known stars swapping the Premier League for the Chinese Super League. Chinese president Xi Jinping is a football fanatic and back in 2011 explained his own personal ambition for Chinese football: To qualify for the World Cup, to host the World Cup, and finally to win the World Cup. Football is now on their National Curriculum. So it seems China are serious about taking the sport on and building an army of fans.

100,000 Chinese tourists are expected to travel to Russia during the World Cup, dwarfing the 32,000 tickets sold to England supporters, with flight bookings between China and Russia up by around 400% from the same period last year.

The Chinese companies taking advantage of the 2018 World Cup

With this increasing popularity of the sport throughout China, many large companies have taken it upon themselves to use the World Cup as a platform to advertise.

Some of China’s biggest brands such as Wanda, who were the first Chinese company to sign up as a FIFA partner in 2016.

With Sony deciding not to renew their agreement with FIFA ahead of the World Cup, that paved way for Hisense to be named the official television supplier, along with Vivo who have been presented as FIFA’s official smartphone sponsor in a six-year agreement.

And Mengniu Dairy will be providing the tournament’s official yoghurt drink.

So, could the World Cup be the game changer in getting Chinese brands full exposure to more global audiences? The odds are out for the countries most likely to take the trophy this year, but how things play out for these Chinese brands is yet to be seen.