Location, location, no location
When it comes to making TV ads we’ve been to some pretty interesting places over the years, Capetown, Majorca, Istanbul, Bucharest, Brittany and um… a studio on an industrial estate in East Acton. This year has provided us with a completely new challenge – going live with a quick turnaround new TV campaign, but with no option to shoot anywhere in the world, not even near the A40 in West London, and absolutely no actors or crew either. Instead we needed to make the entire process happen remotely.
The Coranavirus crisis has presented brands and agencies with all kinds of new and challenging issues to overcome and resolve. At a basic level, it’s finding the right tone and mood for the brand. It’s a national crisis and we don’t want to trivialise that and underplay the seriousness of the situation with inappropriate messaging or misstepped mood. For some brands the first question has been whether they should be out there at all. And if the answer is a yes then it’s a matter of finding what the right thing to be saying is, what’s relevant to their customers and what do they want to hear from the brand. And that’s before creative and production comes into the mix.
LV= were a brand who felt it was right to have a presence in front of their customers. More people were spending more time at home and doing different things – like trying to find the space to work in an office like environment or taking time to look after the kids who were also at home, away from school. LV= felt that it was right for them to provide a reassuring message. Their website was seeing a lot of visits from people wanting to know if they were covered for working from home, or if there any changes to their policies as a result of the lockdown. The message they wanted to get across was a simple one. ‘Don’t worry, yes you are.’
And TV is a great way to get this across. The inevitable effect of lockdown meant more people were at home, spending more time in front of the screen. LV= have always had a big TV presence, so this felt a natural way for them to convey their reassurance message.
The next big challenge for us was how to make this happen as fast as possible and to still make it feel like an LV= ad. We were keen to avoid generic stock footage, totally UGC based solutions or Covid cliches. It still had to be distinct and look and feel like LV=, despite it delivering a very different kind of message.
From briefing the creatives to presenting to client took less than 24 hours, with a whole range of options that explored tone, messaging and different production possibilities. Like everyone else, we were working remotely too, but luckily, we had some as yet some unseen footage that we had shot for our latest campaign that we could repurpose. Footage we shot of a dog doing yoga, a boy doing keepie-uppies and a family sat on a sofa suddenly would all be part of a new TV campaign. Emma Johnston, our TV producer, pulled out all the stops to make this happen and working remotely with the editor at tenthree and the post production crew at Jam, our fantastic VO artist Rachel Shenton and the team at LV=, we got the ad across the line in record time.
A bedroom in Hove, kids’ playroom in Brighton and spare room in Southwick might not have been the most glamorous places to create a new ad, but we couldn’t be prouder with what we’ve created for LV=.