There’s an easy way to know when an ad campaign has made it – generally around that time you drop the punchline on your work buddies at lunch and the creepy guy from accounting starts squirting milk out of his nose. For your sake, I hope he was drinking milk.
Undoubtedly that campaign last year was Wieden + Kennedy’s “Smell Like a Man” spots for Old Spice. It won them an I’m-on-a-boat-load of awards including scoring the agency AdWeek’s Agency of the Year honors.
There’s also an easy way to spot when the same agency starts resting on their skinny-jean-loving laurels and jump the shark. Generally it’s around the time your mom sends you an email asking if you’ve seen this “super cute little video”. Well, Old Spice lovers, prepare for some 24-pt. fuscia Arial coming your way…
You know when you see that truly great ad or commercial? The one the makes you involuntarily nod in agreement or laugh so hard you wet your Dockers (good luck getting urine stains out of pleats)? You probably think to yourself, ‘Oh man, whoever came up with that bit is a genius.’ And maybe he’s good or maybe he’s lucky, but chances are at the beginning of his career he wasn’t both – and in most cases, he was neither.
Showing us the inherent humility of the ad industry is Freshman Ads, a showcase for successful ad mavens to share their first-ever project – most likely devised at a time when they weren’t that good, they weren’t that lucky and they were probably writing copy in Wichita for Two-Toothed Suzie’s Barnyard Bonanza.
Got a good ol’ bit to share? Send it to the boys at firstname.lastname@example.org and they’ll most likely throw your work up on the wall of pain. Because, after all, it’s good to remember where you came from – but I’d advise you to take that radio jingle from Two-Toothed Suzie’s out of your portfolio. Seriously, enough’s enough.