Is it nap time yet?

We like throwing our creative placement teams in at the deep end, and we want them to have fun too… so we gave placement team Sabine & Claire and placement designer Sam a brief to create an interactive installation for our Hanbury Street window space. They came up with a wonderfully odd (and surprisingly practical) productivity boosting tool and gave it a brilliant infomercial-style visual identity.

Read on for a few words from the team behind InstaNapzzz: 

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Are you constantly tired? Overworked? Unhappy?

Do you like napping but don’t, because you’re a normal working adult?

We’ve got you covered!

Introducing InstaNapzzz! The personalized, recyclable, revolutionary glasses that will make you look awake even when you’re not.

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And they’re recyclable!! You’re in luck… Napping actually makes you more productive. That’s right!

No need to keep worrying about nodding off at work. InstaNapzzz will change your life! By simply taking a picture of your eyes and printing it on paper glasses, no one will notice a thing! InstaNapzzz will take care of everything, all you need to do is wear them. 

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Just come to Wieden+Kennedy's offices now, follow three simple steps and get your personalized pair of InstaNapzzz FOR FREE!

So easy.

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So whether you’re in a meeting, with your step mum, in a meeting, on a date or in a meeting, just wear your InstaNapzzz and have your sneaky little snooze, any time you choose!

Goodbye missing out on naps, hello InstaNapzzz!

8Head down to 16 Hanbury Street between March 30th to April 10th, and you can make your own personalized pair of InstaNapzzz FOR FREE.    

Be sure to share your best InstaNapzzz snaps using the #instanapzzz hashtag. We're collecting all the best ones on a gallery on our site, here

Offer exclusively available at the Wieden+Kennedy London window. No purchase necessary.
Conditions apply: Please use responsibly. Do not use while driving. Do not machine wash.

Thanks to everyone who helped make this happen. You’ve made the world a better place.

And now, excuse us, it's naptime…

InstaNapzzz – Glasses for napping!

Are you constantly tired? Overworked? Unhappy? Do you like napping but don’t, because you are a normal working adult?

We’ve got you covered!

Introducing… InstaNapzzz! The glasses that make you look awake even when you’re not.

Napping is scientifically proven to improve productivity, but people don’t take naps in fear of being seen as lazy. So W+K creatives Sabine and Claire (creative placement team) and Sam Part (placement designer) wanted to help find a way to get away with a 40-wink productivity boost by making it possible for people to sleep with their eyes wide open.

InstaNapzzz are personalized glasses printed with each user’s own eyes. Thanks to InstaNapzzz, anyone can subtly nod off wherever they desire. And everybody wins: employees feel less tired, their employers get a more productive workforce.

These glasses, far from being a revolutionary innovation, are a playful statement on a bigger issue: raising awareness around napping at work.

Want to get your own free pair? Visit our window installation, designed to echo the visual style of TV infomercials, at our offices between March 30th and April 10th, to make your own InstaNapzzz.

Share your secret snoozes with the world via Instagram using the hashtag #instanapzzz. You may just end up on this very live feed of the best snaps.

Persuading, charming, fawning, bribing and pimping

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There's an interesting piece about Mad Men by the author James Meek in this week's London Review of Books. Worth reading if you're interested in the show.

Here are a couple of brief extracts from the long piece.

"Sterling Cooper, the fictional advertising agency around which Mad Men is built, is a caricature of the commercial TV system that produced the series: a pool of creative people in bitter thrall to the accountants and deal-makers they rely on for money. Although we learn in parenthesis that the agency gets most of its income from commission on the ads it places, for dramatic purposes the agency is divided into two departments: Creative, which comes up with campaign slogans, artwork and copy for ads, and Accounts, which persuades, charms, fawns, bribes and pimps its way to getting and keeping corporate clients. Mad Men is a show about writers dependent on advertising, written by writers dependent on advertising, the difference being that the fictional writers of Creative write the ads on which they depend."

"By making Leopold Bloom an ad man, Joyce anticipated the modern world, where a common dream is to brand ourselves, project an attractive corporate image through social media, then stumble on the one meme or clip that will stop the world in its tracks and get us bought:

What were habitually his final meditations?

Of some one sole unique advertisement to cause passers to stop in wonder, a poster novelty, with all extraneous accretions excluded, reduced to its simplest and most efficient terms not exceeding the span of casual vision and congruous with the velocity of modern life.

Yet the weight of big corporation commercial propaganda that occupies so much space, time and thought has a malignity. The cumulative effect of current British advertising is that in order to be happy, beautiful and prosperous, you should borrow money, drink, gamble, buy a new car and eat processed food.

The protagonists of Mad Men seldom address advertising as advertising. In Don’s first effort to articulate what it’s all about, he declares:

Advertising is based on one thing, and you know what that one thing is? Happiness. Happiness is the smell of a new car. It’s freedom from fear. It’s a billboard on the side of the road that screams with reassurance that whatever you’re doing is OK.

This doesn’t make sense. Advertising that convinces you your life is fine isn’t going to make you buy something new; the aim of advertising is to promote dissatisfaction, a sense of specific want, not reassurance. As it turns out, however, Don is merely deluded. The happiness he speaks of is his code for the state of the ideal American family life he believes himself to have created, and believes himself able to sustain, even as he gives himself the freedom to step outside it at will. His early crisis with his wife comes because she is both a consumer of his brand, the Perfect Draper Family, and an essential part of it."

Well, when not busy promoting dissatisfaction, I'm looking forward to the final season of Mad Men, though I have little hope of a happy ending for Don.

More on Mad Men from Welcome2Optimism here.

And I can strongly recommend James Meek's The People's Act of Love.

Happy Birthday, Nike Air Max.

The Nike Air Max turns 28 today. And as many of you know, we take birthdays pretty seriously here at W+K. 

16 Hanbury Street was filled with people commemorating the occasion by wearing their favourite pairs.
 
Many W+K'ers also attended a very special birthday party, Air Max Day at the Oxford Circus NikeTown, where shoppers' Air Maxes were buffed to perfection by the pros.
 
It was a celebratory day for all, but none so much as TV Producer Tom Dean, who took his admiration for the Swoosh a bit further than most.
 
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Thanks go to Ali at Jack the Clipper for his fine handiwork. Nice one, Tom. Phil Knight would be proud. 
 
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thoughts on W+K’s annual ‘school report’

It’s nearly half term and, as is traditional at this time of year, the advertising trade journal Campaign has published its annual ‘school reports’ on agency performance. The report on W+K is mostly very positive but I suppose it’s only to be expected that it is coloured somewhat by Campaign's perception of the significance of our parting ways with Tesco. They infer that it signifies an inability to manage big accounts. The perception from the inside is a bit different. The trouble with Tesco wasn't its size; the real problems were the issues within Tesco's business and its culture that have led to its recent difficulties. These were things beyond our control. We wish Tesco all the best under its new leadership team and with its new agency, but we have no regrets about the parting of ways. For ourselves, we believe it’s better to be better than it is to be bigger.

Campaign scored us 7 (‘good’ – the same score we awarded ourselves – though we wrote our self assessment prior to the loss of Tesco) and said, Judged on its ads, Wieden & Kennedy London is a match for any UK agency. But the loss of the £110 million Tesco business to Bartle Bogle Hegarty in January 2015 has got people asking if it is set up to handle big accounts. It is true that the supermarket was mired in scandal and needed to show that it was making root-and-branch transformations but W&K never looked comfortable in the relationship and its campaigns lacked the quality and innovation that the agency brings to other clients. What’s more, this is familiar territory for W&K. In 2011, it lost the £80 million Nokia business (admittedly, another brand far from rude health) and had to cut a third of its staff. 

The managing director, Neil Christie, has said that he does not expect redundancies this time round, but recent wins – including RB’s Finish and Chambord, and more work from Arla – won’t plug the gap left by Tesco. (This is true. But Finish, plus Arla, plus Chambord, plus Ovo, plus Tyrrells, plus a recent large win we have yet to announce will hopefully do it.)

Elsewhere, W&K was responsible for some of 2014’s best ads. Three’s "#SingItKitty" was a viral smash on a par with "the pony" and Honda’s "the other side" was the envy of creative departments around the world. Few digital shops create ads as innovative as "the other side" and none can match W&K’s populist touch. Even more impressively, the interactive spot was made before Iain Tait arrived from Google to replace Kim Papworth (who will stay on as a senior creative) as one of the executive creative directors. Rivals should be nervous. 

Christie and co have worked hard (Christie hasn’t worked that hard, it’s mainly been ‘and co’ that have done the work) to make W&K the best US-agency outpost in London (Just to be 100% clear, the objective here has never been anything to do with being ‘best US agency outpost in London’; the goal is simply to be the best) and all the talk about Tesco should not detract from its achievements in building a consistently excellent creative team.

But Dan Wieden – reputedly a curious blend of hippy and hard-nosed businessman – will likely be asking what it is about this office and heavy-lifting accounts. (Well, Dan hasn’t mentioned it. So far, at least.)

How the agency scores itself: 7

How the agency rates itself: Not a bad year. We did some great work across a broad range of clients, getting many mentions in the selections of 2014’s best by CampaignFast Company, YouTube etc. We achieved some strong results. We picked up a bunch of awards. We had a successful year of new business. And we hired some great new people, including Iain Tait, who (re)joined as ECD from Google.

All in all, I can't grumble too much about this report, even if I disagree with the suggestion that we struggle with big accounts. We have struggled with two big accounts: Tesco and Nokia. Both of these were companies in crisis. We appreciate that our good work over the year on other accounts, big and small, has been recognised. So, post Tesco, it's business as usual for W+K London: aiming to do the best work of our lives for great clients. Onwards and sideways, as Kim P always says.

A Shiny, Pointy Evening

Some of us are a little tired today, following last night's British Arrows ceremony, at which Honda The Other Side, Lurpak Cook's Range and Three Sing It Kitty were honoured with some lovely arrow-shaped metal.

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Our host was the one and only David Mitchell.

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The Other Side picked up Commercial of the Year, as well as two golds for Interactive Web-Based Commercial and Best over 90" Web-Based Film, Cook's Range picked up triple gold for Best 30"-60" TV, Best 60"-90" Cinema and Dairy, and Three Sing It Kitty went home with a bronze for Telecommunications.

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Our very own Andrew Bevan won (one half of) Best Creative Team and a silver for Charity for his Violence is Violence campaign for Mankind.

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And W+K Portland nabbed gold for Sportswear and silver for Best Over 90" Commercial using paid-for media for Nike The Last Game.

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And we managed to bring back the pointy bits of metal back to the agency in one piece this morning.

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Peruse the full list of winners here. Congratulations to all involved!

Calling all aspiring creatives

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If you’re a creative advertising student or graduate, this is your chance to get your portfolio in front of  creatives in the most social of settings – W+K creative Jason's house. 

Crib Crits is the third time he and his better half have opened their door to the next generation in partnership with the YCC. And they've all been super successful. So far, 10 creatives have gotten jobs after turning up to the previous events (and having awesome work, obviously). Yep, 10. 

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The next one takes place on 9th April. Agencies already confirmed to attend this one are Wieden+Kennedy, Mr President, Isobar, Grey, LBi, VCCP, BBH and more. To be in with a chance of showing off your folio in a living room, bedroom or toilet, send a link to your work to cribcrits@youngcreativecouncil.com and Jason will get back to you to let you know if you’ve been successful as soon as is humanly possible.

If you have any questions, tweet @jason_scott or @victoria_trow. Thanks and good luck.

 

Circles of Gold

Last night's Creative Circle Ball had a nice metallic sheen to it, as two of our campaigns each took home a few awards each.

Honda The Other Side picked up three golds (for 'best use of new technology', 'best online film' and 'best interactive'), as well as the 'gold of golds' for top ad of 2014.

Lurpak Cook's Range won gold for 'direction' and 'editing' (big congratulations to Dougal Wilson at Blink and Joe Guest at Final Cut) and silver for best TV film. Not a bad haul, if we do say so ourselves.

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Photo courtesy of Creative Pool on Twitter.