Break Through Buzz: So Good, It’s Scary

November 8, 2013

Check out some of the most eye-catching campaigns and inspiring innovations shared recently by members of our global Creative Community.

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ExFEARiential
Selected by 
Karen Strauss
What it is:
 “Canadian creative agency John St. put themselves on the viral-video map two years ago with a self-parodying piece about ‘catvertising,’ which they followed up last year with a satirical clip about the dark secret behind viral videos. This week, they’ve taken a swing at the recent trend in marketing shock tactics through their fictional new offering, “‘ExFEARiential.'”
What makes it break through:
 “As marketers, it’s crucial that we have the ability to laugh at ourselves. But even more importantly, these videos show that humor is a splendid weapon for the industry to check its own excesses and ensure that we don’t get so carried away with our cleverness that we lose sight of the very audience we’re working to connect with.”

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Game Over
Selected by 
Claudia Geidel
What it is:
 “Developed for the New Zealand Transport Agency, the ‘Flash Driving Game’ is an online racing game where players digitally see their lives flash before their eyes. The game accesses the player’s Facebook account, so that when they speed on a motorway and eventually crash, images of friends and family eerily scroll across the screen.”
Why it’s break through:
 “This campaign shocks in super-personal way by using players’ Facebook photos against them. The simulated near-death experience leaves a clear message: You only have one life, so slow down.”

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A New Way to Get a Lion
Selected by Stacy Roth

What is it:
 “This video by Canadian agency Rethink is a spoof on the hard work and pressure that it takes to win a Cannes Lion award.”
What makes it break through: 
“Being a part of an award-focused industry, it’s sometimes easy to forget that awards are just objects. This video is a great reminder that, while they can be the payoff for great work, they’re not the only reason we do what we do. Plus, it’s very funny and showcases just how creative Rethink is.”

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Stay Together with Skype
Selected by 
Michael Maldonado
What it is
: “Get your box of tissues ready, this ad is a bona fide tearjerker. As a part of its family portrait series, Skype unveiled a commercial that documents the unique emotional bond that two teen girls built across the globe using the video software.”
What makes it break through
: “While pulling on the heartstrings isn’t anything new for brands, this ad is an important reminder that, as storytellers, we need to ensure that our stories feel authentic and grounded. As we develop written, audio and video content for our clients, it’s always a good idea to take a step back and look at things through the lens of a consumer, not just a marketer.”

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Girls Don’t Poop
Selected by 
Emilie Hayhoe
What it is:
 “Poo~Pourri, a toilet deodorizer, recently launched a YouTube commercial campaign, marketing the product to women to make their bathroom experience smell better. Since its September launch, the video has had over 19 million views, 39,000 likes and 9000 comments.”
What makes it break through:
 “The commercial is being used as an ad on YouTube, which gives the viewer the choice to ‘skip’ after a couple seconds. This video breaks through because it grabs your attention within three seconds by addressing a taboo topic for women in both a clever and humorous way.”

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TOMS Socially Conscious Marketplace
Selected by 
Molly Cronin
What it is
: “TOMS, the shoe company (a Ketchum client), has a new page on their site called Marketplace, which serves as an online bulletin board to showcase other companies in the social entrepreneurship space. Through TOMS Marketplace, consumers can familiarize themselves with socially conscious brands and buy products to support different causes around the world.”
Why it’s break through:
 “This is a genius idea because it helps TOMS put a stake in the ground for what they stand for and serves as a great aggregator for consumers who are interested in socially conscious goods. TOMS Marketplace provides positive PR for other companies and itself as it elevates the entire social entrepreneurship sector- I’m a fan!”

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Rethinking Dyslexia
Selected by 
Jeff Lewonczyk
What it is:
 “Designer Sam Barclay has created a book to help people without dyslexia understand what it feels like to suffer from the condition.”
What makes it break through:
 “Few things open the mind more than seeing the world through someone else’s eyes. Though it does succeed in its task of engendering understanding for dyslexic individuals, this project goes beyond that to offer an engaging, highly visual look at the beauty and limitations of language – hopefully it will throw you off-kilter enough to provide some fresh perspective.”

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Breaking Barriers with Jewelry
Selected by 
Ella Burton
What it is: “
An ad for Tanishq jewelry in India that seems fairly innocuous actually has a social message by displaying the jewelry in a second marriage ceremony.”
What makes it break through
: “Ad Age commented that “in a nation where widowed and divorced women have historically been treated as outcasts, the theme of the spot – a woman’s second marriage to a man who treats both her and her daughter with love and respect – is not only revolutionary; It is crazy bold.’ Instead of sticking with cultural norms, this visual story shows a family’s love and happy next step in a way that is subtle yet brilliant, hopefully leading to a cultural shift. And the jewelry looks great!”

Charlotte is a proud member of the Ketchum’s three-person Innovation team. When she isn’t in pursuit of “that one big idea” she can be found singing in Gotham Rock Choir (undoubtedly the best community choir within a two-mile radius), jogging in Central Park or attempting to cook Spanish cuisine in her apartment in Manhattan’s Lower East Side.