Using the Ashley Madison hacking scandal as a humorous linchpin, DigitasLBi has unleashed a pro-bono campaign for Rescue Dogs Rock NYC featuring two videos that will appear on the organization's website.
"We wanted to take the gossip-worthy incident of the day and use it to direct people's attention to a cause that deserves a bit more gossip," DigitasLBi creative chief Ronald Ng tells AdFreak.
The premise: Many of the AM cheaters whose identities were revealed by hackers, as well as the livid cheatees, are now, for obvious (if opposite) reasons, in the market for better and more loyal companions—the kind who never call you needy, and don't mind if you double up your partners. At the end of each spot, users are driven to the Rescue Dogs Rock NYC site and shown profile-style images of dogs in the market for owners.
The first spot, "Dogs Don't Judge," stars a cheater.
"Well, according to a group of hackers that broke into a certain cheating website, I'm an asshole," he begins. "And now my identity has been leaked in a breach that has left countless other fornicators very much alone. Fortunately, I was able to fill this significant-other-shaped void in my life with a new friend."
Well, dude, if you run around sniffing other gals' virtual butts, what do you expect?
Meanwhile, "Dogs Don't Cheat" stars a cheatee. "If you're like me, one of the spouses, you're better off," she says. "You've got time on your hands, and some prime real estate in your bed. So why not fill it with someone who knows how to sit … and stay?"
She says she wants a pooch, but—stereotype alert!—that maniacal laugh is the stuff cat ladies are made of.
Ashley Madison is never mentioned by name, though its tagline (the delightfully blunt "Life is short. Have an affair") is tweaked to read, "Life is short. Have a dog." It's all for a great cause, though the concept sometimes has to stretch to accommodate its message.
"We figured the category was screaming for an effort that didn't take itself seriously," Ng says. "Hopefully, we can have Rescue Dogs Rock NYC receive donations to help with costs associated with taking care of rescues."
Actual rescue dogs, cuties all, star in each spot. (Wanda, the pit-bull-type beastie in the cheater ad, has already been adopted.)
"The dogs were way more chill than we expected [on set]," Ng says. "We figured they'd be barking and running around, but they just kind of curled up on our actors' laps and went to bed. We actually had to stop shooting because people couldn't stop laughing at how cute the dogs were being."
Well, if dating websites have taught us anything, it pays to play to your audience.
Chief Creative Officer: Ronald Ng
Executive Creative Director: Atit Shah
Associate Creative Director: Spencer Black
Associate Creative Director: Dave Roth
Associate Creative Director: Justin Nuttall
Creative Director: Jennifer Awasano
SVP, Social Strategy: Jill C. Sherman
SVP Producer: Steve Torrisi
Senior Producer: Lisa Young
Account Manager: Syril Smith
Social Strategist: Geoff Brownell
Editor: Jared Kaplan
Production Company: Magnet Media
Composer: Skip Haynes