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Smirnoff

S

Interviewee

191 Creative

Team Disadvantages

1, 2

Project Outcome

Successful

Industry

Alcohol

Location

Cape Town

Team Risk Tolerance

Low

Team Dynamics

TeamDynamics_FunandProductive

Company

Smirnoff


I'm just trying to think back. Yeah, 'cause we kind of [inaudible 00:08:05] below the line with ... we haven't done much online advertising as in banners and that kind of stuff and microsites, websites and stuff. That was kind of one of our first real projects with doing that. I don't know how- It's difficult to pinpoint why it was so successful. I think a big part was client- was ... I mean you know how it is and I think everyone probably complains about it, about how clients kind of shoot ideas down or are too scared to try stuff or whatever? For some reason, for some odd reason, when we did that they just loved everything and it was just like "Do it" and "There's money for it" and "There's just no excuses" and [inaudible 00:08:53], you know. [9076],[9077],[9059],[9067]
And that was also a new experience for us was ... because we haven't done kind of stuff before, we've never had that feedback, and to get that feedback was really brilliant 'cause just to know that what we're doing is actually working and ... people are responding to it and stuff. That was really cool ... [9078]
Yeah ... and that kinda sucks, if I ... I wasn't too involved with it. That was about ... Yeah, 'cause I've got these two- I've got Diesel Extra and V-Powered Diesel? This year they wanted to go on this whole thing about Diesel Revolution. It's not more- Not any longer the old days of ... You just get the crap diesel. Which now I've got this other offering but our crap diesel is actually also quite cool. So it just isn't now "Whoa! Diesel Revolution. We're changing the face of diesel" kind of thing, this year. But we ... I don't think it ... yeah we went- That was a game. It was kind of just the client's view. What difference the client can make from being totally supportive and totally alarmed as to do what we do, to going "Oh, this is what we want. We want guys with flags ... and like, doing this and they're walking up a hill and it's the Diesel Revolution." [9068]
Then we end up just doing that 'cause it's like, they won't budge on it. We'll fight in the beginning and after a while, it's just like ... it's just not worth it so we'll just do it. So ... [9069]
Yeah! Yeah yeah yeah! No no no no, it like goes down to the detail! They must be wearing this and there's like three black guys, then a white guy, then five more black guys you know. It just becomes silly so ... you know ... yeah. [9089]
What else about it? I think ... also, we had- We sometimes get very busy and you don't always have the time to sit and work things- the details out and stuff and that thing ... everything is work together. We had enough time to sit and brainstorm those banners. We had a good- That's also the partner that we got into, actually design the stuff. To design those internet banners and to design the microsites- [9072],[9090]
Yeah. They're called Hellocomputer. They were absolutely brilliant. They did very well at The Loeries Awards this year with ... or they won like loads of stuff. A small company ... I'm not sure but they're really small and kind of new. We got them in and they just got it from the start and kind of ran with it and added stuff to it so everything on this project just clicked. Then I think the last- Most like, cherry on the coke for us really, was the feedback. I mean, we got emails from the media guys saying " This and this banners" ... like exact feedback. "These banners run these sites from their day to that day. This is how many hits it got." At that point, it was the busiest media placement company that was the best figures they'd ever had. It was like [9074]
Yeah. They're called Hellocomputer. They were absolutely brilliant. They did very well at The Loeries Awards this year with ... or they won like loads of stuff. A small company ... I'm not sure but they're really small and kind of new. We got them in and they just got it from the start and kind of ran with it and added stuff to it so everything on this project just clicked. Then I think the last- Most like, cherry on the coke for us really, was the feedback. I mean, we got emails from the media guys saying " This and this banners" ... like exact feedback. "These banners run these sites from their day to that day. This is how many hits it got." At that point, it was the busiest media placement company that was the best figures they'd ever had. It was like- [9060]
I think it was the, like I said, it's the crafting of the idea. It wasn't just like ... we do find ourselves in the position where sometimes it's a bit rushed and you can't do the thing as crafted as you want to but we had time to- I mean, those banners were really- They stood out and the people were like "The game!" Especially the game one, we were all very chuffed on. We were playing it in the office and that's ... it was just so unobtrusive to people surfing websites. Normally, or a lot of time, these things can be so irritating when it's popping up and jumping up and this thing was just like a little thing in the corner, yeah, but it's such an addictive little game. [9055]
Normally advertising could be a bit irritating to people but everyone in the feedback was just "Everyone loves it and everyone's playing it." So that was great and ... yeah, and just see that it looked really well crafted and beautifully done and everyone was just chuffed, you know. We were all very happy with it and getting weekly feedback, like ... it just keeps on going. It just keeps on going well and the end, loads of entries into the competition so yeah, that was ... I can't think of bad stuff there. [9061]
So what the old school is, almost in the 80s, we had those arcade games with the- with your car at the bottom. You just had to dodge the stuff and you play this game with just mousing over it and in controlling the car ... it was awesome to see that people actually having fun with it, you know. [9056]
Not very big. They're very scared of doing anything new or ... I still don't know, actually. I must actually ask Rachel "How did that happen?" 'cause we so used to ... anything that's different or anything's that's really ... it's tough because- But it comes from being a global brand and the local client being very scared of stepping out of the boundaries or doing something that hasn't been done before or whatever. So I think, yeah. That's a huge stumbling block for us. On Shell, specifically ... I mean, Shell is our biggest client, downstage probably with [J&B 00:19:28]. We do find that that global thing is a big limitation to client ... trying new stuff or ... daring stuff or just- Or not even. Just something different. Anything different to what they're used to, they kind of see alarm bell or hear alarm bells going off. So I would say very small tolerance. [9057]
The overruling feel- The biggest feeling on global is like it's just rehashing of the same stuff. It's like, all translating, it's all adding the new website and so it's kind of ... and it's that thing of those- they're just sitting all far away and everyone's kind of scared that they're gonna bomb something or ... you know? [9073]
... I mean, [inaudible 00:20:13] just for the- With the [inaudible 00:20:15] first time in this agency really, that I work with a global clients and ... for me, I mean. I think most people's feelings just like "you just get this stuff from overseas and you kind of slightly adapt it." So, it's kind of ... feel very limited. I mean, there are the exceptions but it is more the exception to the rule that you get to do something different or- Like, on J&B, we've got the J&B Met area, so that's another thing where they really trust us and we can just go and it's- It's awesome and a fun project to work on. [9079],[9062]
Whereas local clients can also be difficult but in a different way. I think everyone prefers that at least you can see them face to face and you can ... it's easier, probably, to convince someone when you're sitting with them around the table. You do get difficult local clients as well but I would definitely prefer local clients- I mean obviously, you need the global guys as well but I mean, I think to work with and for is much- It's much more fun working with local clients. [9084]
I think it is that personal thing. Just to the fact that you can speak on a one to one level with them. They also understand the culture, they understand where an idea comes- I mean, yeah, that's the problem with global a lot of the times. If we do something that's intrinsically South African, there is just no ... I mean it's just the way life is. They're not gonna get it. There's things in the country that you only gonna know about if you live here, or have been living here for awhile so. I mean, obviously local clients will understand. That's a big thing ... I think that's the two biggest things. They understand the culture, we're all living the same culture, and the fact that you can build that personal relationship with them ... I think is the biggest thing. [9086],[9087],[9085]
... I think ... I'm just trying to think of the clients we've got like Green Cross, the shoe company. They're local guys. Challenges for them ... but you can't really say it's because it's South African or local but I mean, they just flippin' hard-headed people. It's like these two brothers that's got this company and they just- The thing is, they don't sit around the same table even, or they don't agree on most things, so that kind of makes it difficult but I mean, that's not a South African thing, that's just a ... What we've seen with them ... we had a- At my previous at [BBDO 00:23:31], we had Checkers, which is the supermarket chain, and it was like ... It's just this giant thing and that was the whole thing of- Just too many cooks in the kitchen. It was just like, you could never get anything approved or it just- When it runs down on the food chain, you're so scared to approve anything and ... so. It was just a very ... That was a very difficult client to work for. [9075]
mean, there [inaudible 00:28:40] obviously is kind of another company that does and trusts to do- I think they're as good as they were a few years ago. I think in the middle they changed agencies or something, I'm not sure but ... just is an example of a company that's kind of doing that. So [inaudible 00:28:57] very much possible. [9088]
It was, again, I don't really know why, but it just was very smooth. They loved everything, they never bombed anything, they always just said "Yes, we love this stuff. Just do it." You know? So, yeah, it was really great. [9080],[9098],[9070]
Flippin' awesome. He was just a legend. [9081]
Because ... look, in the first place, we all- Our department, now as well but especially back then within- It extends from ... any company or whatever, it really comes from the boss, what the vibe is and how everyone works together. Now, Doug is just, he's a ... I mean before even- We were all just great mates. So we were great friends. We enjoyed being together and spending time together. He's a brilliant- in my mind- he's just a brilliant creative director. He's got a good eye for what will work and what won't work and he's very encouraging. The thing is, he got the best out of the people that work for him. So he was like ... when he saw a good idea, he would push it and then would do anything to make it happen. He got excited about stuff. You get some of these guys that's just like, they never get excited about anything or ... you know. So, yeah. [9082]
Reference Tags
[9076] Appropriate resources,[9077] Promote autonomy & sense of ownership,[9059] Trust,[9067] Win-win conflict about ideas,[9078] Balance of challenging work,[9068] Yielding conflict about ideas,[9069] Yielding conflict about ideas,[9089] Micromanaging,[9072] Empathetic disposition,[9090] Unbalanced workload,[9074] Great example - External Influences,[9060] Organizing effectively,[9055] Ikea effect,[9061] Communicating ideas across domains,[9056] Ikea effect,[9057] Risk compensation,[9073] Empathetic disposition,[9079] Balance of challenging work,[9062] Trust,[9084] Communication issues,[9086] Communication issues,[9087] Cultural differences,[9085] Trust,[9075] Indecisive leadership,[9088] Internal changes/challenges,[9080] Promote autonomy & sense of ownership,[9098] Trust,[9070] Win-win conflict about ideas,[9081] Organizational encouragement,[9082] Organizational encouragement

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MADISON BARNETT
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