Jonno Seidler: Postcard from Australia

Screen Shot 2016-08-30 at 3.18.50 pm.jpgJonno Seidler, social copywriter at M&C Saatchi in Sydney says all young social media eyes are on Kenzo.

While McDonalds' deal with Omnicom may be making waves across the ad world today, among the younger set, all eyes are on Kenzo and its sparkling new longform perfume ad, directed by the legendary Spike Jonze. The spot is exhilarating for a number of reasons - including the way in which it gloriously takes the piss out of the category - but a lot of it arguably comes down to the soundtrack.

Jonze's brother, Sam Spiegel, created the dancehall-inspired 'Mutant Brain' especially for the campaign.  It follows on from 'Da Da Ding', another custom job for Nike, composed by EDM upstarts Gener8ion and Gizzle. You can find each of these songs on streaming services. Even stripped of their visual context, they're also good enough that you'd want to add them to your party playlist.
Advertising has a history of bankrolling stars into turning jingles into jams. From Justin Timberlake's 'I'm Lovin' It', which doubled as a spot for McDonalds, through to the famous Pepsi run of collaborations in the '90s (and let us not forget the Mad Men revival of 'I'd Like To Buy The World A Coke'), it's somewhat in our DNA - even if that typically relates to broadcast.

Australia's most famous foray into composition in recent years is still 'Dumb Ways To Die', a jingle cleverly wrapped in song, but nonetheless not something you're going to drop at a 21st birthday.

For the most part, our industry's approach to music, particularly in the age of Facebook, in which we are repeatedly told that millennials scroll past content without sound, is one of gentle ambivalence. We oscillate between licensing big name tracks for large TV campaigns and using skilled production houses to create moods that sound like contemporary music, but deliberately retain none of the actual stickiness.

These recent moves by brands firmly plugged into the pulse of 'kids these days' should not go unnoticed. Both the Kenzo and Nike ads are longform, were released first online and rely on having the sound turned up. By our benchmarks, they should not work. But the marketability of their tunes gives them a residual effect that extends far beyond the spot, and a clear association between the brand and cool.

This year, an automated stock music composer called Juke Deck won an innovation lion at Cannes. It uses artificial intelligence to create sounds to spec for any type of creative, musical genre or audience. It seems that as we plunge more and more dollars into video, it's coming at the expense of music, which we consistently attempt to make cheaper. Kenzo will not be the last brand to prove that our rules around content are there to be broken.

If there's something worth listening to, the earbuds will go in and brand salience will go up. So who will be writing the beats for your next big campaign?


OMG!!!!! said:

Music works in advertising... What a revelation! Thanks for the killer insight Australia

Aussie ang moh said:

@OMG!!! why don't you contribute something interesting instead of sniping in the background? good on this guy for contributing. And don't be too quick to criticise Australia, as creatively they are kicking all of our arses.

Leave a comment

About Campaign Brief Asia

A blog for advertising creatives in Asia. To pass on news or advertise on the CB Asia blog, or to subscribe to Campaign Brief Asia or Campaign Brief Australia/NZ magazines, or The Work 09 Annual, email: Kim or Michael

Latest jobs

Retrieving latest jobs

House rules for commenting

Here are the ground rules for posting comments on stories: This site is a moderated blog. Comments that are seen to be more abusive than witty and/or constructive will not be posted. Obviously, we do not allow 'hate speech' or comments that are seen as a personal attack, defamatory, degrading or prejudicial to an individual or company. Overly abusive language also adds nothing to any discussion and will not be published. On occasions we will be asking people to contribute work, opinions and views on various topics - you are free to disagree, so long as you observe the above rules and remain constructive.