Toward the end of a tough week for the league, Lowe's will break a new NFL campaign, themed "Make your football self happy," during Thursday's CBS telecast of the Baltimore Ravens game against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Four humorous spots from BBDO New York show men and women being urged by their inner pigskin selves to get their home improvement projects done—so they'll be free to watch pro football on Sunday.
The well-acted ads are aimed at men and women. Indeed, the best of the bunch shows a woman berating herself to get her gardening done in time for kickoff.
Lowe's pockets a huge chunk of its sales volume on weekends, when do-it-yourselfers finally catch up around the house, according to CMO Tom Lamb.
"For us, it's an angel on the shoulder reminding the consumer that football and home improvement can nicely co-exist—if they get off the couch early and get into Lowe's," he said.
Lowe's has a big advertising commitment to CBS's new Thursday night package, also serving as a presenting sponsor of the network's pre-game show.
Of course, neither Lowe's nor BBDO had any idea the Ray Rice story—his contract was terminated by the Ravens after video emerged of him knocking his then-girlfriend out cold—would explode this week. Still, does Lamb think it's wise to go for the funny bone on an NFL telecast when the league's approach to domestic violence is under fire?
The campaign is about football fans, Lamb replied, not the league or one single club.
"The ads, and the fun, and the humor, and the enjoyment of what we're trying to portray, is really for the fans," he said. "Everything we've done in testing, and pre-testing, is showing that our fans, and homeowners in general, really enjoy the spots."
Spots: "Thank You," "Snack," "Pep Talk," "Early Start"
Agency: BBDO, New York
Chief Creative Officer, Worldwide: David Lubars
Chief Creative Officer, New York: Greg Hahn
Executive Creative Directors: Lauren Connolly, Tim Bayne
Creative Directors: Molly Adler, Mike Sweeney
Art Director, Copywriter: Matt Vescovo
Senior Producer: Melissa Bemis
Head of Music Production: Rani Vaz
Senior Account Directors: Jim Reath, Bob Estrada
Account Director: Heather Linde
Account Manager: Shippey Lewallen
Account Executive: Amanda Burnett
Group Director, Behavioral Planning: Annemarie Norris
Production Company: Epoch
Director: Michael Downing
Director of Photography: Toby Irwin
Editing House: Mackenzie Cutler
Editor: Ian Makenzie ("Snack," "Thank You," "Early Start")
Editor Nick Divers ("Pep Talk")
Visual Effects House: The Mill