Archive for March, 2010

Skype Crits

We’re looking for new creatives at Brave. So we’re inviting any junior teams looking for work to pitch themselves via Skype. If you’re interested, head over to the Skype Crits blog for a closer look.


The mother of all shoots

There are a few tired faces floating around Brave this week. Hardly surprising when you consider our latest shoot ran for seven straight days, comprising 5 press ads and 3 TV spots. Here’s a sneaky peek at the set…

Are advertisers and agencies ready for 3D?

Cameron, Avatar, stereoscopic 3D, active v. passive, left eye right eye, negative and positve parallax, sex for the eyes….all buzz words in the world of 3D production, but how well do advertisers and further more agency producers and creatives know how to best exploit the technology in creating more dynamic and creative ads and branded entertainment.

I was recently told by one of London’s only professionally qualified stereographers that when Cameron was making Avatar, he not only had directors notes and shooting board but specific 3D notes to ensure that every last detail was considered for how his vision for 3D was to be utilized and best executed. That’s what worked so well with Avatar, it was never meant to be an ‘in your face’ theme park-esque experience it was to be a subtle yet immersive experience. This is where I see many creatives failing as the 3D bandwagon literally rolls out of the screen and into our faces.

With the success of Avatar, Alice and with more high profile theatrical releases such as Toy Story 3 planned, we have seen rapid and committed investment to making 3D content more available and accessible in and out of the home.

2010 will see 3D digital cinema screens literally treble from approx 300 to nearly 900, 1st generation 3D TV screens and blu-ray players from the likes of Panasonic hitting the shelves in early May and Sky scheduled to soft launch the first 3D broadcast channel from April/May. With this kind of momentum, plus the ‘3D premiums’ that can be made, 3D is this years HD and it makes sound business sense to be involved – but how will all this affect brands and agencies?

Firstly 3D represents a new opportunity for brands to ‘create media firsts’ and more immersive and engaging visual brand experiences. However I can see it will take a little time for ‘getting the most’ out of the technology, with such little technical expertise and hardware currently available in the UK, before we even get to agencies and creative teams, thinking with a Cameron-esque 3D head on.

So be prepared for spears being thrown at the audience selling a chocolate bar, or a red phone jumping out the screen to sell car insurance before we see more intelligent creative applications.

The more savvy agencies, will embrace the opportunity and think outside 3D clichés that have existed and been utilized pretty much since the dawn of Logie Beard time…I for one have ensured that all my agency creative teams have been lectured by directors and stereographers in how to best utilize the technology and use it within the creative process instead of retro fit after the idea has pretty much been signed off by the client. It has been encouraging to see how negative parallax (depth inside the screen) is being considered to be just as effective as the positive parallex (stuff appearing outside the screen), that you will undoubtedly see a lot of in your local cinemas in the upcoming months.

So clients beware, expect to see some obvious and dodgy 3D scripts, so-called ‘3D experts appearing with your Agency producers’ (I can pretty much count the actual number of professionally qualified people on about 3 fingers) and 40% premiums lumped onto your production estimates when this really doesn’t need to be the case.


Keep it simple stupid

At Brave we like to do things simply, we like to talk to people, try to understand them and recognise that most consumers do not understand marketing theories and jargon.
One of the things I’m constantly reminding the team here is stop being so London centric, stop thinking only in the terms of your social life, family, upbringing, mates, some consumers like to pop to tesco in their pyjamas, some don’t aspire to the same things as you, basically try to think like the target and stop writing reams of words to sound clever, be succinct, be humorous if you feel it works but please be relevant.
Let me give you an example, I was looking at Marketing when i came across a feature on the launch of Dove Men +Care, as I read on I was told it was aimed clearly at guys like me. 40 plus, family in tow, but still thinking like we’re young men. Now having worked in this category I read on with interest.
The name immediately jarred, Dove Men I can get, as I’ve seen the real beauty campaign, even been forced to join in the debate over dinner and seen the products stuffed into our bathroom cabinet, affording me even less space than the average man gets anyway.
But what does Dove men + care mean? I know Dove has a history in skincare/moisture but for a older guy (the target) do we need this extra descriptor, it’s a deodorant, I stick it under my arm and hope i don’t sweat or smell, I’m not looking for a shoulder to cry on, my mother I hope still cares for me.
Let’s read on and listen to what the brand team has to say:
“It’s down to superior care for total skin comfort, “
“Same level of comfort we (men) expect for the rest of our lives”
Now I could be rude and say what a load of old marketing b…. but I won’t, I’m sure the brand manager who wrote this probably believes it. A more honest approach to efficacy and maybe fragrance might work, but the mindless waffle of marketers is at best dull and uninspiring and secondly just not very clever.

All well and good but on opening my bathroom cabinet this week Dove + men had appeared, my wife had decided it looked nice and I deserved some total skincare comfort, so what do I know.

Brave copywriter’s CV goes global!

You might think we wouldn’t be too happy about our creatives sending their CVs to every corner of the globe, but when they’re as simple and effective as this one, how could we say no?

Here, Ed talks us through his idea and how it came about. Oh, and if you haven’t seen it yet, here’s the original CV.


Put simply, a CV that received over 15,000 views in 2 days.

The originality of hosting it on Google maps and the site’s inherent searchability meant that once it found its way onto Twitter and a few key blogs, it spread quickly and globally.


Every day, all over the world, employers receive millions of CVs – the majority of which are dull, tired Word documents that do little to excite the reader or shed any light on the candidate’s personality.

We’re a creative industry – so why should our first point of contact be so uninspiring?

There are exceptions of course. We’ve received some gems ourselves – but they very rarely break the mould of an A4 piece of paper. Taking the format online seemed like a logical step – and judging by the overwhelming response, Google Maps is as effective a channel as any.


I’ve had loads of emails asking how to create a Google map. It’s pretty simple really – all you need is a Google account. So rather than bore you to death with a list of instructions, I think it’s probably easier if I just direct you to Google’s very own video guide.

What next?

We’re currently working on an exciting new application for Skype – and we need your help. If you’re a creative, graduate or student and you fancy getting involved – with the chance of earning a couple of weeks’ paid work experience at Brave – send your CV (and yes, we will accept word documents) plus some examples of work to

A couple of credits:

I had a sneaky suspicion when I first created this CV that someone must have had a similar idea in the past. As it happens, I was right. I’ve since been emailed two CV’s – one hosted on Google Earth from 2007 , and this one from Carren O’Keefe, another copywriter in New York. Finally, big thanks to Mike Litman, whose original Tweet was – as far as I’m aware – where everything went right.

Brave Ideas for Panasonic

HD Everything

A multi-dimensional campaign for a multi-dimensional product. The digitally printed DM pack was particularly successful – accounting for almost half of all Panasonic Blu-ray recorder sales last year.

Brave Ideas for Green & Blacks

For true cut-through in print you can do more than use great art-direction and copy as your weapons of choice. Media placement, used within the context of the idea, can also be an excellent tool as these ads show.
The NMA, ANNAs and Campaign agreed.