Ad of the Day: Staples

There are better ways to spruce up your office than screensaving it into shape

Office-supply ads in the U.S. aren't generally known for their subtle wit. In Argentina, it's another story. A new Staples spot from David, the Ogilvy & Mather-owned ad agency that opened in Buenos Aires (and São Paulo, Brazil) earlier this year, somehow manages to make the purveyor of printer paper and folders seem practically cool by ditching the annoying red "Easy" button (you know the one) and embracing a little lo-tech quirk.

The hard truth, as the ad states, is that most offices are awful environments. The HQ office of imaginary "Unlimitech Solutions," which apparently hasn't redecorated (or bought new PCs) since the late '90s, is especially bad. So, with a group of important visitors on their way up, the boss decides the place needs a little refreshing. His assistant responds by throwing up a Windows 95 screensaver on her messy desktop computer, and then on every other unsightly surface in the room, which she pronounces "classy," utterly deadpan. Of course, with a few clicks of the mouse (and a strange little electronic soundtrack), Unlimitech could have solved its dilemma with some file holders and new monitors from Staples. It may not be as "classy" of a result, but it's a little easier on the eyes.

The beauty of this spot is that it completely ditches the usual, polished TV aesthetics. Both the old and the new Unlimitech offices (screensaver version notwithstanding) look like dumpy places you've probably worked at. The spot's simple, middle-management realism hits a subtly funny note, proving you don't need a shtick to make a memorable ad.

CREDITS

Client: Staples

Agency: David, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Executive Creative Directorss: Joaquin Cubria, Analia Rios

Creative Directors: Matias Lafalla, Ramiro Gamallo

Art Director: Ricardo Casal

Copywriter: Juan Javier Pena

Production Company: argentinacine

Director: Rafael Lopez Saubidet

Photography Director: Julian Ledesma

Producers: Nano Tidone, Marcos Landajo

Editor: Agustin De Vittorio

Postproduction: Aldo Ferrari, Luli Jimenez