Ad of the Day: Jack Daniel's | Adweek Ad of the Day: Jack Daniel's | Adweek
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Ad of the Day: Jack Daniel's

Does a campaign about authenticity have any place on Facebook?

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In today's world of virtual friends and music clouds, plenty of brands—particularly rugged American ones—are finding success in pushing back and emphasizing the tangible and the authentic. Often there's a patriotic slant to this kind of messaging—the notion that being American means being real, working with your hands, and saying hello in person. Anything less means you're an imposter living in a dream world.

Arnold's new Jack Daniel's campaign is cut from this cloth—sort of. It's built around letterpress printing, one of the most famously authentic activities around. The agency employed Yee-Haw Industries, a letterpress printer in Knoxville, Tenn., to create a bunch of patriotic posters (scroll down to see eight of them) and documented the process in the wonderful little two-and-a-half minute documentary below. The third element in the campaign is a straightforward 30-second spot (also below) called "As American As," which is basically a celebration of America as it used to be—a land of physical rather than virtual invention. Everything in the commercial is old and weathered. There's not a laptop within 100 miles of it.

But then, Arnold took the whole campaign and grafted it on to Facebook, building an app that lets you customize your own posters and share them virtually. Now, clearly this is just something you do these days—the Facebook app is standard procedure. But doesn't it contradict the entire point of the campaign? Sharing thumbnail JPGs of letterpress posters must be one of the most inauthentic things you could possibly do. It's like listening to Mozart through Macbook speakers, or watching Blue Velvet on an iPhone. In Jack's case, it might not sink the campaign, but it does make the messaging feel more like a pose than a strongly held belief.

The problem is—Jack Daniel's is quite a progressive marketer (it was the first liquor brand to buy Twitter ads, for one thing) that's peddling an ultra-traditional if not outright regressive message. It might be able to get away with that, but there's going to be some oddities like this along the way.

"Here's to the American spirit," the TV spot says at the end. Well, which spirit is that? Gutenberg or Zuckerberg?





















CREDITS:
"Yee-Haw Poster Documentary"
Agency: Arnold Worldwide
Client: Jack Daniel's
Chief Creative Officer: Pete Favat
Group Creative Director: Wade Devers
Art Director: Travis Robertson
Copywriter: Bryan Karr
Producer: Billy Near
Producer: Ben Ouellette
Art Buyer: Andrea Ricker
Business Affairs: Maria Rougvie
Project Management: Lauren Butterworth
Account Management: Paul Nelson, Nate Stewart, Shannon Coletti, Arden Clapp
Production Company: Paper Fortress
Special thanks to Yee-Haw Industries. 

"As American As"
Agency: Arnold Worldwide
Client: Jack Daniel's
Chief Creative Officer: Pete Favat
Group Creative Director: Wade Devers
Copywriter: Bryan Karr
Art Director: Travis Robertson
Producer: Billy Near
Producer: Ben Ouellette
Art Buyer: Andrea Ricker
Business Affairs: Maria Rougvie
Project Management: Lauren Butterworth
Account Management: Paul Nelson, Nate Stewart, Shannon Coletti, Arden Clapp
Production Company: Prettybird
Director: Max Malkin
EP(s): Kerstin Emhoff  & Ali Brown
Editorial: Lost Planet
Editor: Max Koepke
Producer: Krystn Wagenberg
Telecine: CO3
Colorist: Tom Poole
Audio Post: audioEngine
Mixer: Rex Recker
Producer:Jessie Meade
Executive Producer: Sharon DiTullio-Tepper
Music: Gary Clark Jr.
Composer: Gary Clark Jr. "Bright Lights"
Sound Design: Lost Planet
Sound Designer: Max Koepke

Print
Agency: Arnold Worldwide
Client: Jack Daniel's
Chief Creative Officer: Pete Favat
Group Creative Director: Wade Devers
Art Director: Travis Robertson
Copywriter: Bryan Karr
Print Producer: Jim Spadafora
Art Buyer: Andrea Ricker
Business Affairs: Lisa Mercier
Project Management: Lauren Butterworth
Account Management: Paul Nelson, Nate Stewart, Shannon Coletti, Arden Clapp
Production: Yee-Haw Industries

Facebook Application
Agency: Arnold Worldwide
Client: Jack Daniel's
Chief Creative Officer: Pete Favat
Group Creative Director: Wade Devers
Creative Director: Jose Luis Martinez
Art Director: Travis Robertson
Copywriter: Bryan Karr
Digital Producer: Amanda Traversi & Ryan Donohue
Art Buyer: Andrea Ricker
Business Affairs: Maria Rougvie
Project Management: Lauren Butterworth
Account Management: Paul Nelson, Nate Stewart, Shannon Coletti, Arden Clapp
Developer: Lollipop