It was a noteworthy year for Richmond’s advertising and marketing community, with campaigns that ranged from a groundbreaking online pre-roll ad to a four-part video series starring a talking piggy bank. Here’s our picks for this year’s standout local ads, in no particular order, pulled from The Pitch and other BizSense coverage:
Misery Brothers – “Tomatoface”
The first foray into marketing for this art and music collective produced a video splattered in GWAR blood for Texas Beach Bloody Mary Mix. Featuring cameos from members of the shock-rock outfit, the video – filmed in the band’s own GWARbar – tells the urban legend of Tomatoface, the local beverage brand’s mascot. Misery Brothers’ Joe Adkins described the cinematic cocktail as equal parts “Carrie,” the cantina scene from “Star Wars” and a GWAR video, complete with a dash of “Heathers.”
Free Agents Marketing – “Redskins Fandemonium”
What do a bicycle-riding hipster, a Bon Secours physician, a single dad of two and a chair-throwing woman have in common? In this spot for the Bon Secours-sponsored Washington Redskins training camp, they’re all Richmond football fans showing their best Redskins “camp face.” The 30-second spot by Free Agents Marketing earned the agency a first-place Silver Telly award.
The Martin Agency – “It’s What You Do”
You just couldn’t escape those Geico “It’s What You Do” ads in 2015. Whether you thought you were watching an exploration documentary, the final round of a golf tournament, a “Game of Thrones”-esque trailer or an emergency room drama, before you knew it, your eyes were glued to Dora the Explorer, or a golfer-hungry kraken, or a prisoner ping-pong game, or surgeons playing Operation.
Studio Flatland – “Penny Bags a Buck”
Starring the client’s own employees and a hilarious animated piggy bank, this enjoyable four-part video series for ClearPoint Credit Counseling Solutions won Studio Flatland a 2015 Summit Creative Award and an Internet Advertising Award for Best Financial Services Online Campaign.
Madison + Main – “Lightning Strikes Twice”
Resembling a live news report, this PSA for the Lightning Protection Institute’s Lightning Safety Awareness Week was produced with local studio Broadscope Media.
ND&P – “Dr. Internet”
Neathawk Dubuque & Packett created this 30-second TV spot for MidMichigan Health. Starring “Dr. Internet,” the ad advises viewers to avoid incorrect information from online searches. The spot earned the agency a bronze Telly Award in the local TV and cable hospital category.
Think804 – “Community Impact Fund”
The latest fundraising campaign for the United Way of Greater Richmond & Petersburg took on a new look with this effort from Think804, which used recognizable typography and consistent visuals to tell the stories of people being helped by the campaign. Materials included brochures and a video.
Studio Flatland – “Do You Wanna Save Some Bacon”
Another ad for ClearPoint Credit Counseling Solutions, this animated singalong won multiple awards for Studio Flatland, including three Telly Awards – two silvers for Online Video and Use of Animation, and one bronze for Online Commercial for Financial/Banking. It also picked up two People’s Telly bronze awards for Use of Animation and Online Commercial.
ND&P – “Japanese Tattoo: Perseverance, Art and Tradition”
Combining eye-catching visuals on banner ads and posters, stickers and cup sleeves with links to online videos – even a tattoo-like mural painted onto the agency’s building – this multifaceted campaign for the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts’ Japanese tattoo exhibit earned the agency four Summit Awards – three gold and one silver – from the Blue Ridge Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America.
The Martin Agency – “Family: Unskippable”
The accolades say it all: AdWeek’s top pick for Best Ads of 2015; winner of The Martin Agency’s first Grand Prix in Film award from the prestigious Cannes Lions festival in France. The awards kept coming for this 60-second pre-roll for Geico that gave online video viewers a reason not to skip it. Of the Grand Prix in Film award, Martin CEO Matt Williams told BizSense in July: “It recognizes that piece of film as the best piece of digital film in the world last year. That’s a remarkable and humbling and exciting achievement for us.”