If you’ve ever been to Argentina, you’ll know what a beef obsessed country it is. But in recent years, something’s changed. Century-old barbecue houses are shutting down and being replaced by trendy vegan restaurants serving tiny portions of mod-food in big white plates. Beef is steadily losing its place of privilege. So when Paty, the country’s oldest brand of beef burgers came to us for a re-launch campaign, we decided to go beyond just burgers, and rise up in defense of Argentine meat instead.
Of course, being an Indian this campaign is the advertising equivalent of burning my passport.
Apart from the TV spots, we also gave the brand a re-haul. Here’s a note that explains the evolution of the Paty cow.
One of the reasons I moved to Argentina, was to work on brands like Lucchetti. The agency had transformed a bottom shelf pasta brand into the country's most popular, solely with its advertising. The concept was simple: to show mothers for what they really are, not the clichéd, shiny-toothed version of TV advertising.
This is the latest commercial of the campaign.
Lucchetti Mother's Day
For the Mother's Day campaign, the idea was based around a funny statistic: over 85% mums claimed their husbands gave them terrible gifts. Using commercials, and the Facebook page of the brand (which now has 4 million fans), we created a campaign chronicling the trials of the dads as they set about trying to find the perfect Mother's Day gift. The campaign included an appearance by Argentina's Simon Cowell, and a full length music video.
Blender Removal 1
Blender Removal 2
Blender Removal 3
Blender Removal 4
Mercado Libre, the Latin American version of ebay, had a problem: Loads of people visited the site, but when it came to making the purchase they preferred doing it in a shop. Buying through a website just felt too new fangled.
Considering that the average lifespan of a website is only 44 days, we felt it was odd that people thought of the 10 year old Mercado LIbre as new and modern. The truth was that it was old. Really old. Or in website years, 2860 years old.
The campaign featured three TV commercials, two institutional spots and one on-ground idea.
ML 45 Million
ML 30 Million
Gallo, a major rice brand was foraying into the world of rice cookies. And they wanted everyone to know ‘fun trivia’ about these new cookies. Like how 20 contained just 99 calories, that they were crunchy, the mind boggling choice of two flavours they offered, and the most revolutionary of all, that they were delicious.
Speaking Spanish with an Indian accent has its advantages. Being cast as an exotic monkey tops the list.
Argentina's most traditional brand of pasta, Matarazzo, wanted Argentines to try eating something other than the traditional Spaghetti with Tuco (tomato sauce). We suggested a new ingredient: Rock.
Two years after the first "Rock the Pasta" commercial, it was time for one more ingredient: The man. The recipe-defying, pepper crusher-wielding, garlic-smashing, kitchen-shattering man.
Powerade had signed on big Miami Marlins star Hanley Ramirez to front their baseball campaign. Problem 1: Hanley Ramirez had just suffered a serious injury, and was out of the game for months. Problem 2: Critics had taken over social media, questioning Hanley’s desire, efforts and ability to come back, branding him a sell-out who wasn’t interested in the game anymore because he’d secured his 70 million dollar contract.
For a drink that’s based on pushing yourself when the chips are down, these events in the life of our celebrity endorser seemed just the right opportunity. The bat featured in the commercial was then used by Hanley at various games. He went on to have a great season and silenced his critics.
Hanley Responds Case
Becker is a Chilean beer brand that asked us to launch Icebeer, a beer that had smaller bubbles than other beers. How small are these bubbles? So small they’re only visible through a microbottle. And what do these bubbles do? What you’d naturally expect from tiny bubbles: Sing in their extremely fancy English voices.
Becker Text Message
Becker Short 1
BECKER SHORT 2
Becker Short 3
Banco Ted X
Banco Hipotecario was one of the sponsors of the TEDX Talks in Buenos Aires, and wanted to leave behind something other than flyers and corporate literature. Looking back we noticed that last year’s event had generated a lot of online conversation and TEDX became the most tweeted topic. Anticipating something similar, we decided to publish a book in real time that recorded all the ‘talk’ around the TED talk. Everything that was tweeted about the talk, during the talk would go into this book. Thanks to some very fast printing, the minute the audience stepped out from the talks they were given a copy of “The talk about the talk”.
Marbels is a popular Indian candy. So popular, that they make giant packs with 360 candies in them. This was a poster for that pack.
The Argentines take some traditions very seriously. Drinking mate tea in a group, Sunday barbecues with the family, and snacking on alfajores (chocolate covered cookies). So when Chocoarroz entered the alfajor market as a healthy variant, with the cookie replaced by rice wafers, the overwhelming response was rejection mixed with disgust. However, there was no disputing the sound logic that these square cookies would fit perfectly in the Gentleman’s pocket and the Lady’s handbag.
These spots ran as 15 second idents on TV.
"Tu cuerpo pide salsa" (Your body needs salsa) is a pop hit by Gloria Estefan. Changing salsa to pasta seemed obvious but fun.
Despite having been played for over a 150 years in the United States, football is still treated like an outsider sport. Fewer than 10% of Universities have football (soccer) grounds, national stars like Clint Dempsey are frequently asked why they chose it over other “American” sports and it continues being called by the wrong name. So when Powerade asked us to create a campaign for football based on their ‘underdog’ platform, we pointed out that in America it’s not an individual footballer who’s the underdog, but the entire sport itself.
The campaign consisted of two TV commercials and radio spots.
Powerade wanted us to create a few radio spots that communicated their message of 'Power Through' to young hispanic American baseball players. Instead, we created a radio station. ElSonidoPerfecto.com was an online radio station that played just one single sound - the thwack of a bat hitting a ball with perfect timing - every minute of every day. A bit like our passionate target audience.
Big Bollywood star. Check. Over the top acting. Check. Incoherent plot-line. Check. The big summer hit from 2008. Check. What Indian creative’s portfolio would be complete without one of these?
Best enjoyed in all its un-subtitled and pixelated glory.
Becker World Cup
What's the best beer to drink during the world cup? That would be the winner of the world beer cup, of course.
When you're not the official beer of the national team, and Fifa stops you from using phrases like "The World Cup", "National Team" and "We can", you have to resort to measures like inventing a parallel world cup. We went a step further and claimed that Chile won this secret cup.
The world cup of beers followed the same schedule as Chile's matches, with Becker competing against beers from Spain, Holland and Australia (the other countries in Chile's group) in the lead up to each match. At the packaging level, we stripped all Becker cans of their logos and replaced it with the Chilean national flag.
Oddly enough, a day after this commercial ran, the King of Spain abdicated. Anti-monarchical superpowers, anyone?
Years ago, Becker ran a commercial about how their logo looks like a surfing cat. This is the same cat.
Bits and Bobs
Print ads with tiny logos. India's first commissioned viral video (unverified claim). Digital bits. Activation bobs. And some other stuff.
A campaign for a glue stick that does what glue sticks are meant to do.
Ogilvy Mumbai was shifting office. Seemed like a good reason to sell all the stuff that wouldn't make it to the new space.
Ants at work? No, just lots of words.
Glancing through Asian award journals will reveal that brands like Scrabble, Lego and various highlighter pens find it necessary to advertise a lot. My wife and I jumped on this bandwagon when a director friend of hers asked if we could churn out a script in a few hours because he had a studio and some extra time to shoot stuff. Like the pack shot reveals, it’s unreleased spec-work.
I've always wondered why brands only compete within their own category, and don't go around picking fights with everyone.