For years I have been speaking about the intersection of creativity, humanity and technology that is shaping our world, and should be shaping the way we define our industry. We are the industry that understands human insights and how to use artistry and technology to bring value to people’s lives. And the trends have finally caught up. It’s not about combining these elements any longer; they are all intertwined. Cool stunts aren’t cool enough. Technology must also tell the brand story. And even when humanity isn’t actually human.
Adam&eveDDB London helped turn virtual gaming on its head for EA Sports. Instead of the making the game feel as real as pro football, pro footballers started copying the moves seen on the videogame. The FIFA 18 game included a hidden, never-seen-before move called El Tornado. It had everyone, from football fans to NBA superstars, other brands and even rival videogames, copying the virtual led El Tornado craze.
Our team in New Zealand created a new AI chatbot for Netsafe Cyber Security that allows people to scam their email scammers. The email bot wastes countless hours of scammer’s time with never-ending email conversations, preventing them from scamming other victims and sharing the data with cybercrime agencies. And the email threads themselves became sharable entertainment online.
In Paris, our team used the delay on Facebook Live to share the moment a crash test dummy’s “life flashed before his eyes” in a crash test, launching a heartbreaking story for the French Road Safety Authority. Day after day, the story built a following on Facebook who cared deeply about the “lives” of crash test dummies – and the importance of seatbelts and safe driving.
DDB Nord in Sweden turned online betting into a fitness app that lets you bet against yourself to reach your fitness goals. Their client, the betting company Unibet, now also becomes a fitness brand.
And DDB Spain also turned things on its head for the launch of Audi’s most advanced autopilot technology. They brought humanity to the brand story by connecting with the very first living being to be autopiloted back from space. The dog Strelka and her descendants had quite an interesting story to tell and turned Audi’s futuristic tech into something as comfortable as man’s best friend.
As our Chairman Emeritus, Keith Reinhard, has summed up so very well, “There’s a difference between creating a buzz and creating a brand, a difference between an algorithm and a true insight into human nature, a difference between big data and a big idea, a difference between one-off stunts and enduring brand stories and a difference between a click and an emotional connection.”