FCB New York and Amtrak Agree: the Best Way to Fly Is Not to Fly at All!

By Patrick Coffee Comment

Business travel: uuugggggggggghhhhhh, amirite??

Flying all over the place kinda sucks. It reminds us of that story about two creative directors who went all the way out to South Korea to pitch Samsung, then had to come back to the U.S. because some unnamed executives were too hungover to hear their spiel before heading BACK to Seoul the very next day! Good times.

Now, FCB New York is looking to rebrand Amtrak with its new campaign “Break the Travel Quo,” which is really all about arguing that taking the old-school rail is the best option in that classic planes, trains and automobiles threesome.

How so? Let us count the ways. First, you can make calls on your smartPHONE.

And you don’t have to worry about cramming all your stuff into a single carry-on.

On the driving side, the act of taking a train eliminates all traffic.

And it kind of maybe takes care of your annoying-ass kids, too.

“Break the Travel Quo” looks to be a longtime platform for the brand, and this campaign will also include digital and OOH work.

Here’s what FCB CCO Ari Halper had to say:

“By posing the notion, ‘What if there was an airline,’ the teaser ads grab travelers’ attention and create buzz by suggesting there’s an airline that lets you take four bags or use your phone anytime, shaking travelers out of their inertia. Then, everyone who viewed the teaser was retargeted to receive the ad announcing it’s Amtrak.”

OK so, one thing we have to get off our chests: “was” is a past tense verb. But these ads aren’t using it in that context, so the appropriate subjunctive would be “were,” as in “what if there were a plane.” Because, you know, it’s a theoretical—as the following copy makes quite clear.

Yeah yeah, we are not perfect and we make plenty of typos while editing our own work. The anonymous commenter we miss most might be the trusty grammarian who always corrected our fuckups. But this is still a pet peeve, even though we are pretty sure the copywriters on this campaign understand that they used it incorrectly.

Also, while the Amtrak experience may well be preferable to that of a major airline or the hellish cross-country road trip with your family, it can also be significantly more expensive, not to mention slower than flying.

But that’s all kind of irrelevant because these ads were pretty fun. Our favorite part of the whole effort has to be the alien sleep mask that arrived on our desk earlier in the week.

CREDITS
Account Management:
Marketing Integration Leader: Bill Miller
Group Management Director: Suzanne Santiago
Account Director: Melissa Pitts
Account Supervisor: Quinn Schwellinger
Account Executive: Jordan Abramson
Planning:
Group Planning Director: Raig Adolfo
VP Strategic Planning Director: Mark Hall
Integrated Creative Credits (E.G when the campaign is released at
Creativity Online/Adage)
CCO: Ari Halper
ECD: Stu Mair
GCD: Gabriel Schmitt
ACD: Kat Dudkiewicz, Adalberto Santana, Greg Nance
Copywriter: Ken Syme
Art Director: Justin Batten
Production:
Director of Integrated Production: Leelee Groome
Executive Producer: Stacy Flaum
MPC, Visual Effects and Post Production
Big Foote Audio, Sound Design and Original Composition for “Alien”
Sonic Union, Mix (Mike Marinelli, Mixer)
Epoch Films, Production Company
Director: Matthew Swanson
Director of Photography: James Laxton
Spotwelders, Edit Company (Dick Gordon, Editor)
Video (when the specific pieces go to creative outlets):
(Alien)
CCO: Ari Halper
ECD: Stu Mair
GCD: Gabriel Schmitt
ACD: Kat Dudkiewicz
Copywriter: Ken Syme
Art Director: Justin Batten
(Thumbs)
CCO: Ari Halper
ECD: Stu Mair
GCD: Gabriel Schmitt
ACD: Kat Dudkiewicz
(Bobble Family)
CCO: Ari Halper
ECD: Stu Mair
GCD: Gabriel Schmitt
ACD: Kat Dudkiewicz
(Honk)
CCO: Ari Halper
ECD: Stu Mair
GCD: Gabriel Schmitt
ACD: Kat Dudkiewicz
Radio
CCO: Ari Halper
ECD: Stu Mair
GCD: Gabriel Schmitt
ACD: Greg Nance
Executive Producer, Stacy Flaum
Sonic Union, Mix (Fernando Ascani, Mixer)
OOH
CCO: Ari Halper
ECD: Stu Mair
GCD: Gabriel Schmitt
ACD: Adalberto Santana, Greg Nance, Kat Dudkiewicz
Copywriter: Ken Syme
Art Director: Justin Batten

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