Anomaly, Johnnie Walker Go Big

By Erik Oster 

Anomaly launched its first campaign for Diageo Scotch whisky brand Johnnie Walker after winning the account last December, beating out finalists W+K, Ogilvy & Mather and BBDO to replace fifteen-year incumbent BBH. The effort is the largest in the brand’s history, launching in 50 countries simultaneously.

The campaign is based on brand insights into how modern audiences view success and built around a 90-second anthem ad celebrating joy, entitled “Joy Will Take You Further.” “Joy Will Take You Further” boasts a star-studded cast, including Mexican supermodel Montserrat Oliver, the popular Chicago band OK Go, F1 champion Jenson Button and actors Zhao Wei and Jude Law, who Anomaly worked with on the lengthy online spot “The Gentleman’s Wager” before winning the account. “Joy Will Take You Futher” opens on Law exiting a dressing room and saying, “Blood, sweat and tears will get you there” and, as he sits down on stage, “But joy will take you further.” Shifting through its star ensemble cast, the spot then celebrates joy with messages like “Joy conquers” and “Joy climbs higher.” It gets more than a little redundant by the end of its runtime, but the sheer star power should attract plenty of attention. Supporting the spot in the global, integrated effort are print, digital and point of sales initiatives. Ultimately, the spot feels like a natural continuation of the brand’s “Keep Walking” campaign, rather than pursuing a completely new direction. 

“I am hugely excited about the potential of this new campaign to drive Johnnie Walker forward to the next decade of growth,” Diageo chief marketing officer Syl Saller told The Drum. It is rooted in deep consumer insight and tells true stories of people who have truly walked with joy.”