Bozell Kamstra Keeps It Simple

Hippies, Internet chat rooms and sex all figure into Bozell Kamstra’s first campaign for a series of adult how-to books.

The racy print and TV campaign for the books is tagged, “Buy. Read. Do.”

Produced by Dorling Kindersley, New York, the official name for the volumes is the “Keep It Simple Series,” but they are called simply “KISS Guides” in the breaking campaign. The illustrated books cover a variety of topics, including sex, golf, astrology and wine.

Kindersley wants to compete against Macmillan USA and IDG Books, respective publishers of the guides for “idiots” and “dummies.” Ads are intended to give KISS Guides a somewhat hipper identity. “We found out people had issues with the name [of the idiot guides],” said Dan Reeves, creative director at Bozell Kamstra, Danvers, Mass. “People were reluctant to read them on the train. The idea behind the series is that these books are more reader friendly,” said Reeves. “The ads are simple and engaging and relate the benefit of the books.”

The campaign consists of two 15-second spots, print ads and postcards. People aged 21 and older who are interested in self-help books and personal improvement are the target audience. The spots were shot in black and white, with only the book shown in color. One spot promoting the KISS Guide to Sex, shows a curvy blond woman with her arm around a nerdy looking man. Copy appearing on the screen reads, “She didn’t marry him for looks or money.”

Another spot promotes the KISS Guide to the Internet and shows an elderly couple accompanied by the copy: “Now he can check stocks online.” As the wife smiles, winks and looks up at her husband, the spot closes by telling us, “She pretends to be 23,” in raunchy chat rooms. A KISS Guide to Gardening print execution shows a smiling hippie. The copy reads, “Exactly what he grows … well, that’s his business.”

The budget for the campaign was not disclosed. Print ads will appear in transit stations across country and TV spots will appear on cable networks.