DDB’s Cotton Ads Take a New Direction

NEW YORK DDB’s latest TV work for Cotton Inc. illustrates the versatility of the material, albeit in different settings.

One spot from the New York agency, “Storefronts,” depicts a 20-something woman in jeans walking past a row of clothing stores, each with a more provocative name. They begin with names such as “Work Clothes” and “Play Clothes” and end with “Clothes That Get You Fired,” which features a window mannequin dressed in a red halter top and striped skirt. After passing the earlier stores, the woman enters the last one. The spot ends with the screen copy, “Cotton. You can never have enough.”

Another spot, “Multiple Personalities,” depicts a 40ish woman in her bedroom trying on clothes in preparation for a first date. But rather than looking in a mirror, she asks a roomful of “twins,” who are all dressed differently, depicting her different personas. After she finally wins approval from the crowd for a summer print dress, screen copy says, “Different personalities. Endless possibilities. Cotton.”

The spots, which break Sunday night during MTV’s Video Music Awards, are part of a larger campaign that also includes 12 print ads, about five online banner ads and a cinema ad that breaks in October. The 30-second cinema ad, “Bathroom Buddies,” uses humor in an office setting to tout stain-resistant cotton. Spending on the campaign was not available, but the client typically spends about $20 million a year in measured media.

The TV spots and cinema ad were directed by Frank Todaro of Moxie Pictures, who was chosen for his storytelling abilities and rapport with actors, said DDB chief creative officer Lee Garfinkel. Garfinkel, who has used Todaro on Heineken work at previous agencies, added, “He’s good with comedy.”

Garfinkel described the new executiions as an evolution in DDB’s Cotton campaign, which flows from in-home interviews with women talking about their clothes. Those interviews became the foundation for DDB’s successful pitch in late 2003 and continue to be an “inspiration for a lot of creative ideas,” said Garfinkel.

The executive producer on the new spots was Teri Altman.