When "Saturday Night Live" does a sketch about your brand, it's good to have a sense of humor about it.
That was the approach taken by Farrow & Ball, the upscale English paint brand, after 'SNL' ran a sketch on Nov. 2 starring Kristen Stewart, Beck Bennet and Aidy Bryant that centered around a couple whose sister-in-law reveals she has used the pricey paint to decorate her rented apartment. The segment makes fun of the astronomical cost of Farrow & Ball paints and their flowery descriptions, as well as the fact that you "can't touch" the finished paint—with some digs at the English spelling of "color" as well.
Farrow & Ball agency BMB responded with a full-page ad in the New York Times, describing a new paint color—English Roast. It announces a new “Saturday Night Live special edition col-our!” Named as “English Roast No. 30,” it'sdescribed in the ad as: “A rich and good hum-oured hue with subtle hints of bone-dry satire and a lingering aftertaste of charred British beef. It’s not just paint, it’s Farrow & Ball."
“The advertisement was turned around in just one day," says Anthony Davey, CEO at Farrow & Ball. "The key to any tactical ad is speed. It only seemed right for a British brand to use light-hearted British wit in the ad. Whilst Farrow & Ball doesn’t always use jokes in their creative, it is still a warm and human brand. Embracing humor is just another facet of that.”
Meanwhile, the sketch has prompted a whole host of media comment, including from Refinery29, which points out that given many Americans hadn't heard of it anyway, "Farrow & Ball was the real winner here."