A Cure for the ‘Blahs’

Cronin Bows First Lottery Ads Since Tragedy
BOSTON–One year after a disgruntled Connecticut Lottery employee gunned down four co-workers, state officials have quietly unveiled a broadcast campaign.
The effort, created by Cronin & Co. in Glastonbury, Conn., carries the tagline, “Is this fun or what?” a change from last year’s line, “You can’t win if you don’t play.”
A 30-second TV spot is running on network affiliates and cable stations, accompanied by a single radio execution. Cronin hopes the ads, running periodically throughout the year, “refresh and invigorate the lottery’s image,” said creative director Steve Wolfberg.
Titled “Blah Blah,” the TV spot portrays the lottery as an exciting alternative to a mundane day, during which everyone–including a cute pooch–speaks in “blahs.”
Although the ads were ready to air nearly a year ago, lottery officials postponed their release out of deference to the families of the shooting victims. “We wanted to give it some time and be sensitive” to the tragedy, Wolfberg said.
The budget was not disclosed. The state spent $1.3 million on lottery advertising in 1998, according to Competitive Media Reporting.
Greg Edwards served as copywriter, while art direction was handled by Wayne Raicik. Agency producer Lester Ayala worked with director Annabel Jankel.
Cronin also designed a new lottery logo, called “happy dancer,” a simple, colorful dancing figure tossing dollar bills into the air.