About Martin Murphy

International advertising guy, family man, soccer fan; on a daily mission to enjoy life. My entire personal and professional life has taken place in an international setting. This I think gives me a perspective on our industry that is different than the norm, and perhaps can contribute to the virtual conversation. I started this blog with two main objectives: a) to reinforce the discipline of being observant and thoughtful about the advertising and marketing industry b) to exchange ideas, meet people, and grow my perspective of the business that I work in To be a thought leader one day, the first step is to be a though contributor. This is my first step. Check out my linkedin profile for more info: http://www.linkedin.com/pub/martin-murphy/9/4a0/6a7

Ad of the Day – April 17 (Milan)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: DLV BBDO
  • Location: Milan
  • Client: Sogni d’oro chamomile tea
  • Name: Don’t drink and drive
  • Category: Film
  • Why I like it: Wow. What a great example of a standard product benefit elevated into something interesting and almost artistic, via an inspired idea and fantastic execution. There is magic in the creative process…it’s often difficult to describe, but you know it when you see it. The idea of including a kid and staging what seems like a car accident at the center of a “don’t drink and drive” ad, that’s magic. The way the camera moves and gives us visual cues…yet manages to pull the tension back before we truly get concerned…that’s magic. Lots of it at play here in this wonderful little spot from Milan.

 

Ad of the Day – April 16 (Stockholm)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: Doe Blomberg Gottberg
  • Location: Stockholm
  • Client: Fjalfill (milk products)
  • Name: More night skiing for the people
  • Category: Ambient
  • Why I like it: This idea may seem simple, but it’s quite brilliant in the way it ties together all of its components. The brand role is clear, as a sponsor of enjoyment in the mountains. The payoff to consumers is clear, by giving them more time to ski. Even the “ask” from the consumers is something that gives back – it allows them to do something fun in an otherwise dull moment. In our industry we tend to take for granted that consumers will care, or want to engage…the reality is that we must dig deep to find those activities that are truly “win-win”, as this one is. On a separate note, I love the tone of the video when it states proudly that this was an offline activity. I guarantee this will catch the attention of the judges at award shows, whose minds will have been bombarded with a million cases trying to out-digital one another. This short video shows a keen understanding of who its consumers are, both during the live event and during the judging period. Wonderful job.

 

Ad of the Day – April 15 (Berlin)

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Today’s pick:

  • Agency: Jung von Matt/Spree
  • Location: Berlin
  • Client: NBC Universal Channel
  • Name: It’s the extraordinary ones that interest us
  • Category: Film
  • Why I like it: (Watch the ad first, before you read this) Ha…that’s great:) Very clever, very funny, very engaging, and all in service of a well-defined benefit: a channel that focuses on the “extraordinary”. As for the visual device/joke that makes this ad ..I’m surprised we don’t see it more often, because it works so well, and causes such impact when the visual reveal inevitably arrives. Very well done, and a fitting metaphor for what our advertising should aspire to: do we want to be the couple debating the bruschetta…or the other option? After all, only the extraordinary captures the imagination of consumers.

 

Ad of the Day – April 14 (Sao Paulo)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: ALMAP BBDO
  • Location: Sao Paulo
  • Client: VW
  • Name: Kombi Last Wishes
  • Category: Film
  • Why I like it: A wonderful, wonderful short film commemorating a momentous event in automotive history…the manufacture of the very last VW “Kombi”. For a vehicle nearly as ubiquitous and culturally relevant as its beetle-shaped cousin…how do you mark such an event, and hit the right tone? This film is how. We’re shown a wonderful retrospective on the history and some of the very real lives this van touched along the way. But what really sets the film apart is that it manages to be imbued with the personality of the van, in a way that I wouldn’t have thought possible. It personalizes the vehicle and fills the film with cheery, forward-looking optimism. The end is both respectful of the past, pragmatic about the present, and doggedly optimistic about the future. The last line is…sublime. Hats off to my friends at ALMAP BBDO for living up to the legend of the Kombi!

 

Ad of the Day – April 8 (London)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: W+K
  • Location: London
  • Client: Lurpak butter
  • Name: Adventure Awaits
  • Category: Film
  • Why I like it: Lurpak and W+K have been doing amazing, imaginative, category re-defining work for a few years now (click here and here to see previous efforts featured on Ad of the Day) So what to add…other than my appreciation that they continue to raise the bar, pushing beyond convention to produce work that is half advertising, half film, half entertainment and all brilliance. If you’re a food lover, or someone who loves to cook…would this stand out during a commercial break? You bet it would. It’s an example of a fairly commoditized product completely elevated by the way it reaches you via communications. It doesn’t always work this way, but when it does, it works wonderfully well. More of this, please!

 

Ad of the Day – April 4 (Alicante)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

af_diesel_foto_04f_logo1_aotw

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: Imaginarte
  • Location: Alicante, Spain
  • Client: Diesel Footwear
  • Name: Only the Brave
  • Category: Print
  • Why I like it: Fashion advertising is a bit of a different bird, often operating under a slightly different set of “rules”. But this one caught my eye in a big way: it’s a delightfully simple distillation of the few elements that make a strong print ad. 1. Art direction: the color palette, the cross formed between the leg and the headline bar, the sense of motion implied by the angle of the shoe, and more stuff that I don’t have the training to describe. Very simple, and all in service of the idea and the product. 2. Copywriting: Long form copy has become exceedingly rare in today’s short attention span world. But words make a difference. Only the brave…only the brave what? It’s a question…a provocation…an invitation…a quizzical link to the visual…all of the above. And very much linked to what the brand stand for. 3. Idea: Remove the cupcake and you’ve got no idea, just a product shot. Quite boring. But this visual has intrigue in it, it stops you on your tracks. Will it be smashed, won’t it? There’s a tension here, a story formed by the visual and the tagline, that makes the ad really work. 4. Brand/product: All of the above is first a hook to get you interested, and then a very subtle funnel, leading your eye and mind to a focus point on the shoe at the center of the page. It looks great. I want it! You’re selling an attitude, a mystery, a tension, a style…but at the end of the day, never forget that you’re also selling a shoe. “We sell, or else!

 

Ad of the Day – April 2 (Mumbai)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: JWT India
  • Location: Mumbai
  • Client: Nike
  • Name: Make Every Yard Count
  • Category: Film
  • Why I like it: “Wow!…awesome!…bastards!” This tends to be my initial reaction when I come across and ad like this one. The first two words are marveling at the executional accomplishment: the ad features 1,440 cricketers, from 2,500 crowd-sourced moments from thousands of cricket fields all over India. The final edit is amazing to behold and works perfectly, backed by a kinetic track that adds to the effect. The third word is well-meaning professional jealousy that emerges when an idea is simple-yet-grand all at once. A memorable, iconic, world-class ad that is deeply imbued with the essence of the market in which it was produced - this is the path to follow!

 

Ad of the Day – April 1 (London)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: Grey
  • Location: London
  • Client: Vodafone
  • Name: The Call
  • Category: Film
  • Why I like it: Wonderful. The hard part in advertising is coming up with a good idea, or a good insight. But the hardEST part of advertising is coming up with a good one…done in a slightly different way. You see, much of the good stuff, as rare as it is, has been done before in some way or form. It’s the twist that often makes the difference between good and great. Mobile communications gives you the peace of mind of being connected at a moment’s notice, right? While a good ad shows you the wife being able to reach her heroic fireman husband to check in on him…a great ad talk to you about …the fireman checking in on his wife! What’s the first thing he’d want to do after he’s risked his life? Reach for the phone, of course! I love this ad because (while sidestepping cliché) it shows you that truthful glimpse into human nature that you knew was out there, but somehow were unable to see.

 

Ad of the Day – March 31 (Paris)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: Proximity BBDO
  • Location: Paris
  • Client: Carte Noir (coffee)
  • Name: Rose
  • Category: Film
  • Why I like it: Food porn at its best! There is a hypnotic quality to this film, the way it’s shot, the music, the progression from ingredient to finished product…once you start watching, it’s hard to stop. Indeed, this one features the three components of strong web content: It has some “replayability” (it’s an easy watch, and well executed enough that it bears watching more than once), “sharability” (who doesn’t love a great food video? This can be shared with anyone from your grandmother to your neighbor) and “brandability” (the role of the brand is nicely woven in – very much present but not overwhelming the whole.) A delicious start to the week!

Bonus content: If you enjoyed the one above, what the other videos in the color-inspired series (“rouge”, “vert”, “jaune”) by clicking here

 

Ad of the Day – March 28 (Birmingham)

Your daily dose of advertising awesomeness from around the world!

Today’s pick:

  • Agency: Tinker Taylor
  • Location: Birmingham, UK
  • Client: Scottish Police Federation
  • Name: It’s What We Do – Andrew
  • Category: Film
  • Why I like it: Wow. So many interesting things happening in this campaign. The film is incredibly immersive due to the reality-cam style of shooting, which makes you feel like you’re there. Great use of narrative pacing: the tension builds at the right pace (not too fast, not too slow) until it becomes palpable at the end even for you as a viewer. And an unusually effective device to achieve relevance: showing the personal information of the police officer at the end (and asking you “what would you do?”) breaks down the barrier and makes you see police as human beings – as colleagues, friends, brothers or sisters, or maybe even yourself… Fantastic. But here’s the most interesting thing of all: how many ads sell a brand/product by showing you the most stressful, anguishing and unpleasant part of it? If you’re running a recruitment campaign, wouldn’t this scare people away? Wouldn’t it make more sense to show proud officers getting a medal pinned on them as their mother looks on? And there’s the brilliance of this campaign – it goes against the grain. It avoids the clichés. It rejects the easy way out. And because of that, it sticks in your mind, it gets you thinking, and (I”m betting) it will meet and surpass its objective. The big payoff goes to the ones with guts!

Bonus content: The above is my favorite, but click here and here to view the other two films in this campaign.