Great storytelling is no longer the sole reserve of David Lean or Shonda Rhimes. Yes, advertisers, whose more traditional forms of marketing interrupt our favorite content, have expanded their horizons […]
Zulu Alpha Kilo
In this era of constant change and innovation, to truly invent something is quite rare. But the drive to find new paths and opportunities across marketing, media and tech may […]
That dog won't hunt, but it will rack up debt via chew-toy impulse buys. Canada's Zulu Alpha Kilo is well known for elaborate self-promotions, like its recently revamped agency website poking fun at agency websites. But the shop does have real clients, and its newest work for Toronto-based "nonprofit interbank network" Interac brings the same lighthearted sensibilities to the world of personal finance.
As a rule, agency websites are pretty wretched—full of self-congratulation, jargon, "creative" headshots and pompous meditations on proprietary philosophies and processes. But Zulu Alpha Kilo's is the absolute worst—in a good way.
Toronto agency Zulu Alpha Kilo has had an interesting art piece hanging in its lobby since opening in 2008. It started out as a completely white canvas, and over the years the agency encouraged visitors to draw and paint on it. In the seven years since then, the piece grew into a beautiful work of communal art, as everyone from "celebrities to a future prime minister to hall of fame ad legends and new clients" added their own artistic touches, the agency says. In fact, the only employee who hadn't touched it was founder and chief creative officer Zak Mroueh. Until now. And Mroueh's contribution was pretty shocking: He recently painted the whole damn thing white again.
It's almost Christmas, but don't worry! There's still time to weep openly at commercials, and this "Lily & the Snowman" spot by Zulu Alpha Kilo for Cineplex is just the thing for that. (And since it's also screening in Cineplex theaters, you can cry like a coal miner's widow right out in public.)
Stumped for a fun way to say happy holidays? Try playing "Jingle Bells" with any of your private parts, and you're all but guaranteed to get a reaction. Kmart famously did it with "Jingle Balls" two years ago. Now, Zulu Alpha Kilo has moved on to butts. For its 2015 holiday video, the Canadian ad agency brought in world-renowned Spanish percussionist and YouTube star Jorge Perez to perform a cheeky—very cheeky—rendition of "Jingle Bells."
Five years ago, we made an unconventional decision at Zulu Alpha Kilo. Despite being a startup with only a few clients at the time, we started saying no to free speculative creative work in new business pitches.
People in other industries don't provide their would-be clients with "spec work" for free. That would be asinine. So, why do advertising agencies continue to do it?
When Mike Wolfsohn and his two partners left Southern California agency Ignited in 2010 to form High Wide & Handsome, they vowed not to participate in competitive pitches requiring contenders to foot the bill for speculative creative work.