Every month Oliver Dietrich, Director of Creative Ideation P7S1, offers his feedback on recent marketing campaigns and what start-ups can learn. It’s December and like last month Oli wanted to avoid the Christmas campaigns. But no such luck: they are popping up everywhere, on all channels and all platforms, and with all the big Christmas advertising players already raising the roof with their visually stunning efforts. Big budgets, big images and big emotions. The same procedure as every year, you think. Then you see a spot which is completely different. In spite of this, or perhaps because of it, it works. With a tiny budget, visually persuasive and with a clear storyline and message.
St. Mungo: Potential
TV, social media, mobile, online
#1 Budget: even a small budget (around 7,000€ for this one) can buy you an amazing spot – provided the idea, team and objective are the right ones.
#2 Direction: it doesn’t have to be Hollywood. Even junior directors can produce successful and relevant spots, so long as the strategy is right and they are guided in the proper way. If you can assess talent you can use it effectively for your brand, indeed right at the start of your brand development.
#3 Story: there are two approaches when it comes to campaign development – the “let’s follow others” and the “let’s be different“. More exciting is the second option which, while more difficult due to the time commitment required, is often more successful in the long run.
Homeless charity St. Mungo’s has taken it upon itself to not just provide shelters and food for the homeless but also to draw attention to the social significance of rising homelessness in cities and together to develop ways of successfully reintegrating the homeless into the world of work. The pre-Christmas TV commercial is vitally important in the communication of this – it ensures that the call for donations and support reaches the maximum people with the necessary intensity.
Christmas is peak season for fundraising and charity organisations. But as in many seasonal sectors the competition here is strong. Good causes also want to market themselves successfully against competitors. Moving images are a good choice: the viewer experiences a high level of emotion and involvement.
Clear and to the point. No kitsch, no superficiality, no social criticism, just an easy-to-understand idea and statement.
The subject is emotional and important enough that the director did not need a soap opera aesthetic to move his viewers. Director Josh Carpenter – in his directorial debut – understood this and executed accordingly. He only spent a total of two days filming the spot on the streets of London. The resulting spot persuades with its realistic imagery and immediacy.
Oli’s Verdict: Hot or Not?
A well-made spot that shows what is possible even with a small budget, provided the idea, the execution and objective are right. A spot that stays with you, long after you have seen it. A lesson in how to achieve a lot with very little.