Union Bay ‘open’ To Unique Branding

Toth Design & Advertising this month launches a $7 million print and TV campaign for Seattle-based Union Bay apparel that focuses on the authenticity and youthful appeal of the brand.
The campaign’s tagline is: “UB–Open to interpretation.” By playing off that theme, each ad uses the UB acronym in a playful way.
One commercial features a young man, complete with tongue ring and Elvis-style sunglasses, attempting to drink a cup of hot coffee while driving. He places the coffee between his Union Bay-clad legs–at which point the spot freezes and the words “Unsafe Beverage” appear above the coffee. The driver hits a bump and screams. The image fades to the brand name against a black screen.
A second spot, titled “Unemployed Baby-Sitter,” features an Erica Jong-reading baby-sitter who throws a party. She loses her job when the parents return to find their house filled with dancing teenagers. The third spot, a 15-second execution titled “Upward Bound,” shows teenagers who, through stop-motion photography, appear to be flying.
The “Open to interpretation” tagline is new, said Kristin McKee, the Boston agency’s account manager. Toth, Union Bay’s agency since 1996, has used various taglines in previous campaigns, she said, each of which utilized the theme of individualism and freedom. The spring campaign, for example, used “On the verge of freedom.”
The commercials will air on MTV at the end of August. Additional buys on Fox, ESPN2 and Comedy Central are also being considered, according to agency officials. Print executions, both single-page ads and spreads, are scheduled to run in magazines such as Details, Spin and Rolling Stone. Media buying is handled in-house.