Tobi Ogundipe

Creative Strategist

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Creative strategy consultant; accidental social-entrepreneur; and native Angelino looking for opportunities with innovative brands.

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Posts tagged Saatchi

Hyundai tries to “keep it real”

Months back (probably six months ago at this point) I heard about the Whole Foods Parking Lot video. My friend, who is queen of all things YouTube explained the premise and I kind of shrugged it off as probably another lame white guy rapping. *yawn* BORING. But my curiosity got the best of me and I watched and instantly loved it. Rapping about kinwah, kombucha, master clenses and kale is sooo well…LA. 

Anywho, from time to time I would revisit the video for a quick chuckle. Then around holidays, Hyundai dropped two spots featuring Whole Foods DJ Dave.

My first reaction?

"Heeeey it’s the whole foods dude!"

Second thought?

"Hyundai? Isn’t he driving a Prius in the Whole Foods video? Why didn’t Toyota pick him up?"

And then I got to thinking…

Prius advertising is pretty darn spot on. As the saying goes…if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it! They’re minivans got the needed push with the Swagger Wagon campaign that also leans heavily on the novelty of corny white people rapping. Toyota/Saatchi could have looked at a way to incorporate DJ Dave for the new 2012 Toyota Camry but based on the spots out there now it looks they’re trying to up the sophistication and class of one of America’s best selling cars. 

So if Toyota wasn’t hopping on DJ Dave this probably should have been a sign to Hyundai to leave the DJ Dave in the realm of “youtube vid of the month” 

The two spots that came out of the partnership between DJ Dave and Hyundai end up coming off contrived and forced. On a scale of novel to extremely corny it goes

  • Saatchi’s Toyota Swagger Wagon campaign.

Sure there was some corniness to it but it was tasteful, funny, and it told me a story about a married couple trying to stay hip after becoming parents. It’s completely relatable. I still remember thinking how funny it was to watch a suburban-looking dad with a baby strapped to his chest, swoop into Target and grab Kanye’s latest CD the week it came out.Let’s hope it was the edited v version…

  • DJ Dave’s Whole Foods Parking Lot youtube video. 

Funny, catchy, and completely relevant to the people on the west side of LA. 

  • Hyundai’s spots with DJ Dave. 

What I really want to know is who wrote the rhymes; copywriters, DJ Dave, or was it a collabo? Either way the rhymes were mediocre at best and I really don’t know how relatable a guy rapping about gas mileage is. Especially when he talked about the gas saving electric features of his Prius in the youtube video that lends him the notoriety the Hyundai spots so clumsily try to leverage. 

As for DJ Dave? Nothing but love. He made more than a few bucks -i’m sure- and continued to build his own personal brand. Don’t laugh either, you never know…DJ Dave could be sitting on a stash of sicker than slick rhymes like Childish Gambino. I doubt it but hey…stranger things have happened. If you didn’t know, Whole Foods Parking Lot is not his first video. He’s a writer, producer, and composer and has done music for a few movies and quite a bit of notable spots. Check him out! He’s also kinda cute so that definitely helps! 

Is “The Pitch” Really Worth It?

I came across this article from a TalentZoo e-mail and it really made me think about the resources that are used in excess during the pitch process. 

Now being an advertising newbie I always looked at the sheer amount of man hours used for a new business pitch as an industry norm. All hands on deck, employee bonding, trying to shell out your best work in two minutes-kind of process. The pitch process is fun, exhilirating, and thorougly exhausting; which is fine but what happens when you don’t win? What happens to the accounts that were pushed aside for a week while everyone hopped on the new biz train? 

I would guess this is especially taxing for smaller agencies who are trying to grow their brand/agency. 

Thinking strictly as a business owner, I have to think about how much those flights, tissue sessions, and countless presentations eat into the bottom line. 

Now I don’t profess to know the answer nor am I advocating for a strict “no-pitch” policy as the writer of the Talent-Zoo piece seems to be. 

Of course there are many more factors that I have not addressed and some I can’t address because I’m not in a VP, SVP, Partner, or CEO position. But here are some I would consider:

  • Bigger/older shops like Saatchi, Ogilvy, DDB, etc. have holding companies they can pull from in the event of a large pitch but with that - one would assume - comes red tape, differences in agenda, etc.
  • If you don’t have a holding company to pull from but have major “street cred” to rely on like say Wieden & Kennedy, you can use your volume of work and ability to attract excellent talent from a host of creative and analytical fields to offer your services to brands before they even know they need it - so to speak. Even with the recent unfortunate loss of the Target account, W+K is still very much a heavy-weight in the ad world and can still use it’s catalog of excellent work to approach innovative, forward thinking brands. 

But everyone had to start from somewhere right? So what do you do when you’re a small fish trying to play with the big fish?

To be honest, I don’t have the answer and I’m not really sure there is one right answer for the advertising industry. It’s definitely a high-pressure, high-stakes business to be in but then again, what industry isn’t? 

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