Passion, Teamwork Drive Big Campaigns

NEW YORK Passion about a big idea, gut instincts and risk taking all fueled the development of successful campaigns for Travelocity.com, Philips Norelco, Pontiac and Johnson & Johnson, marketing executives from those companies said today during an Advertising Week forum.

Teamwork within the firms and across their agency rosters also was essential, the marketers said during the 90-minute event, which took place at the McGraw-Hill building in midtown Manhattan.

Each executive showed executions from the various campaigns and answered questions from moderators Wenda Harris Millard of Yahoo and DDB chairman and chief creative officer Bob Scarpelli. About 200 industry practitioners attended the session.

The campaigns displayed a wide range of tones and tactics—from the warm, emotive images of smiling babies in J&J’s “Having a baby changes everything” TV effort from Interpublic Group’s Lowe to the wacky adventures of a yard gnome in spots for Travelocity.com from Havas’ McKinney.

Pontiac presented a montage of efforts to integrate the brand into TV programs, such as The Apprentice and The Oprah Winfrey Show, noting that the goal was to brand both the car and each media property. Pontiac, for example, wanted Oprah Winfrey to “be the most Oprah she can be” when she gave each of the 276 members of her studio audience a new G6 in 2004, said Mark Hans Richer, the brand’s director of marketing.

Philips Norelco showed comical Web films from Omnicom Group’s Tribal DDB for the Bodygroom razor that featured a regular guy dressed in a white robe. In one, the guy deadpans to the camera about the benefits of shaving body hair; in another, he plays an acoustic guitar and sings a ballad about the same topic. In each, he includes scatological references to below-the-waist body parts that look better once groomed.

The films were posted on a site, www.shaveverything.com, that attracted 2 million visitors in its first two months, said Zdenek Kratky, brand manager for shaving and beauty at Philips Norelco. In addition, “we got a lot of pass-along,” with 30-40 percent of the visitors hearing about the site from someone else and 35 percent saying they’d be willing to share the films with others, Kratky said.