Did John Lewis hit the spot?

The alluring execution and emotive soundtrack of the new John Lewis spot caught my attention.


The message  – ‘what’s important in life doesn’t change’ – has a ring of profoundness about it that will doubtless make consumers feel even better about a brand they already love. However it also somehow seems guilty of lacking substance and any real relevance to the retailer. Perhaps this is one of those examples of advertising where the creative is so powerful that the rationale takes second place.

What’s your take?




Never underestimate the importance of typeface

Mega Flicks

Are you cheating your customers?

Business Marketing – The Print Blog.

Wonderfully short and to-the-point post that reminds marketers and business owners everywhere that a quality product is the best kind of marketing there is. After two decades in the business I couldn’t agree more.

These days, audiences are more sophisticated, markets more segmented and buyers more informed than ever. If marketers ever did get away with cheating their customers, they can’t now. Your customer has two things today that were in short supply not too long ago: 1) choice, and 2) a voice. Piss them off and they’ll walk, but not before telling the world and dragging your brand name through mud in a public forum.

Marketing is not about using clever slogans to sell customers short. It’s about understanding what they want and making sure they get it. Telling them your toxic junk food offering is healthy because it has zero carbs or luring them in to extortionate service provision contracts with cheap introductory packages is naff and underhand. And your customers know it. Don’t hide the additional costs. Don’t extol tenuous virtues. Get inside your customers head and figure out why they buy your product, and reinforce that value to them without being disingenuous. We all know a Big Mac is about as good for you as radioactive waste but we know at the same time that it hits a spot that baby spinach salad just can’t reach. So focus on that as your proposition…and don’t think by sponsoring the Olympics you can reposition your nasty food products with all that is good and wholesome.

Above all remember that marketing is never a worthy substitute for a quality product, which to borrow the words of Milton Hershey, is ‘the best kind of advertising.’

Emblemetric: A New Resource for Logo Trends, Analysis, and Research

Emblemetric: A New Resource for Logo Trends, Analysis, and Research.

The Ad Contrarian: Dead Air More Effective Than Facebook Ads

The Ad Contrarian: Dead Air More Effective Than Facebook Ads.

An invitation you can’t refuse

I’m not typically one to wax lyrical over wedding invitations, but this one is well worth swallowing your machismo for briefly to respect the creativity. Nice work.


The Italian Job – the other version

England 4. Italy 2.

England 4. Italy 2. So wrong yet so right.

Tragic sans

There is never a good time to use Comic Sans.

Sabotage advertising

Newcastle Brown Ale response ad

Nice piece of tactical advertising from no-nonsense English beer brand, Newcastle Brown Ale, in response to the ‘Chalice’ ad from premium Belgian beer brand Stella Artois.

England 1. Belgium 0.

where egos dare

According to DeutchInc’s Mike Sheldon, 1/3 of agency staff wants to leave this year. Check this out.


This would be hilarious if it didn’t cut so close to the bone. Actually, it is hilarious anyway. Creatives sick of arse-kissing ‘suits’ more interested in self-preservation than producing great work, and account managers tired of precious creative teams deluded with self-importance.

You wouldn’t think it would be this difficult would you? Take the brief, come up with a great idea and make it. Not so. The business of selling ideas is a subjective one, and where there is subjectivity the biggest ego wins the day. And there is no dearth of egos in advertising.

Is this good for the creative industries? Imagine an egoless ad agency. All objectivity, no passion. Where inspiration chokes at the hands of reason and the validity of the output is measured only by ticking boxes. Wait, that would be an accountancy practice. It all makes sense. Isn’t going to change the world.

So let’s give thanks that agencies are indeed hot houses for the volatile fusion of inspiration, creativity, ego and crusades against convention. If it were any other way, your products wouldn’t sell and your loyal customers would not be following, liking and sharing your brand.

Love this agency’s home page. No industry clichés or advertising voodoo, just a show reel of the work. Nice work too.