Olympus: So Good, They’re ‘Criminal’

ATLANTA The Martin Agency has launched a television and print campaign to introduce the Olympus Stylus 710 digital camera.

The work positions the camera as so desirable that people commit crimes to get them. The ads are tagged, “The irresistible Stylus.”

In one of the spots, a girl in a scouting uniform admires the Stylus camera through a store window before removing the sash that bears her merit badges, wrapping it around her hand and smashing the glass to reach the camera. Another ad depicts a mother holding the Stylus camera while explaining to her child over the telephone that she can’t find the camera anywhere. The third spot shows two paramedics attending an injured and unconscious motorcycle rider who has been in an accident. One of them finds the camera in the man’s pocket and takes it.

The TV work consists of three 15-second spots that began running this week on ABC and cable channels. The commercials will air on ABC during prime-time broadcasts of the programs Lost, Desperate Housewives and Boston Legal. The cable buy includes ESPN, E!, TBS and Fox News. The ads will run through mid-summer.

The print portion includes billboards in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and San Francisco. Ads also are scheduled to run in The New York Times and People.

Three versions of the print ad include two women fighting over the camera, a burglar reaching through broken glass for the Stylus and a woman mugging a man on an airplane for his camera.

Spending was not disclosed, but the Melville, N.Y., company spent $13 million on measured media last year, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus.

Martin, an Interpublic Group shop in Richmond, Va., won the account in May 2001 after a three-month review.