Watch: The top 5 creative brand ideas you need to know about right now
Welcome to a live episode of the top 5 creative brand ideas you need to know about right now.
Ad Age Creativity Editor Ann-Christine Diaz, Creativity Associate Editor I-Hsien Sherwood and Reporter Jessica Wohl look back on the week's best ideas, biggest surprises and more.
5. Away: Spring/Summer 2021 Accessories Catalog
The travel industry has been hit hard during the pandemic, but now that the world is preparing to open back up, d-to-c brand Away dropped a new line of accessories to accompany its popular luggage. To do so, the company went old school with a printed catalog that spoofs SkyMall’s famous back-of-the-plane seat mag. The products include familiar travel gear such as a neck pillow, blanket and compression socks, but the catalog promotes how they can serve folks well while they’re still locked down at home. Who knew your head needed extra support while throwing pots or watering plants? Who doesn’t need a travel blanket while you’re waiting for your ribs to reach perfect fall-off-the-bone tenderness on the grill?
4.Volvo: The Ultimate Safety Test
Agency: Grey Europe
Volvo has gone way beyond to show consumers that safety is priority No. 1. That’s led to innovative ideas like one push that encouraged parents to be late for work so they wouldn’t speed to school, and a library of shared research aimed at ensuring equal protection for all kinds of passengers. Its new global campaign from Grey takes that mission to the extreme with what it’s billing as the “Ultimate Safety Test.” The film promoting the “test” looks back on Volvo’s history around safety then travels to the arctic to show Volvo embarking on an extreme experiment involving an SUV dangled 100 feet in the air from a crane. Turns out it’s just a set-up to announce something even more ambitious—the brand’s plans to become a completely carbon-neutral company by 2040.
3. Mint Mobile: Dream Job
Agency: Maximum Effort
Ryan Reynolds is back. Or rather, Satan, the spokes-character he and his agency Maximum Effort created to promote Match.com last year. This time, Lucifer now happily hitched, has crossed over to a spot for Reynolds’ own Mint Mobile. Now, he’s employed at “Big Wireless,” where he wreaks havoc on the lives of people with pricey phone plans and bad customer service—all a ploy to promote Reynolds’ more consumer-friendly telecom brand.
2. Humane Society International: Save Ralph
Writer/Director: Spencer Susser
Academy Award-winning director and actor Taika Waititi has voiced beloved pop culture characters like philosophical rock man Korg from “Thor” and “The Mandalorian” droid IG-11. This week, he lent his vocals to a deceptively cute but ultimately heart-wrenching spot from the Humane Society. Waititi plays Ralph, a true company man whose devotion to his job has blinded him to the life he should really be leading. It turns out he’s a cosmetic test animal, and his work ethic has cost him his eye, his dignity and no doubt (eventually) his life. Spencer Susser wrote and directed the film.
COVID-19 vaccines have been rolling out around the country, and with them a slew of ads recommending that people get their shots. Among the best we’ve seen so far is this simple one from Google, which relies on the brand’s classic search bar storytelling framework to illustrate the possibilities of life post-pandemic—once everyone is vaccinated. “Get back to what you love,” the spot says.
Other notables moves of the week that we discussed include Josh Groban’s “Bean Song” for Bush’s Beans, the totally bizarre ad for a local bakeshop Julie’s from Manila agency Gigil, and EOS’ NSFW new “product line” honoring a TikTok creator who propelled the brand to viral fame, via Mischief @ No Fixed Address.
That's it for the Top 5. Make sure to check out more of the best in brand creativity at AdAge.com/Creativity.