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High Five: Practice What You Preach


Senior art director at Performance Art New York, Riley Peak, shares a selection of work spotlighting how these particular brands are leading by example

High Five: Practice What You Preach

“What is my purpose?” It’s a question I tend to ask myself a lot lately as a person in my mid-20’s. I think it’s a question a lot of people in my generation are asking themselves when they’re thinking about where to spend their money. They want to know where brands stand on social issues, and are not content just accepting taglines anymore (yeah, those lines that a copywriter you know probably wrote). They want to know that they are practicing what they preach. Here are a few campaigns and brands that I feel have authentically led with purpose, and also did some good...

IKEA - 'ThisAbles'

Agency: McCann Tel Aviv
Production: Craft London

This campaign resurfaced recently as inspiration while working on another project and it was such an important reminder that sometimes the smallest solutions can have the biggest impact. IKEA has always been about democratising design, so what better way to do this than by creating 3D-printed add-ons for people with disabilities, making IKEA’s furniture accessible to all. Instead of creating an all-new furniture line, they came up with a solution that was affordable, accessible and aesthetically pleasing - of course.

REI Co-op - '#OptOutside'

Agency: Venables Bell & Partners
Production: Tool of North America

This work speaks for itself. Talk about putting purpose over profit - they shut down every single one of their stores on Black Friday and paid their 12,000 employees to spend the day outside. This campaign spoke so clearly to who REI is as a brand by getting people to literally reconnect with nature, and in doing so, created a movement. And people loved it. Good on ya, REI.

Heineken - 'Worlds Apart'

Agency: Publicis London
Production: RSA Films

Ahhh, this brings a tear to my eye! This campaign was a small beacon of hope in a time of a lot of darkness. At the time, I think a lot of brands had a hard time finding a genuine place in such a polarising environment, but Heineken didn’t shy away from confronting what we were all feeling. They took an insight that was extremely timely - we found ourselves literally dismissing anyone who had differing beliefs than us. With this brilliant campaign, Heineken measured up to their tagline 'Open Your World'. It was so deeply human, and made me think differently about my own assumptions of others during this time.

Powerade - 'Pause Is Power'

Agency: Leo Burnett Chicago x Publicis Mexico x Publicis Italy

This campaign touched on something unique that many other brands in the sports space haven’t yet tapped into: mental health is physical health and taking a pause isn’t a sign of weakness. By doing so, they clearly stood out from some of their greatest competitors and are championing the new generation of athletes who are putting themselves first. They even raised $500,000 to support college athletes on scholarships to encourage them to take a pause. Pretty badass.

New York Times - 'The Truth Is Worth It'

Agency: Droga5

This feels like another time that a brand took advantage of the moment and it made their message that much more powerful. As a media consumer (and there’s so much to consume), it’s easy to lose sight of the hard work and determination that it takes to deliver the truth. In this spot, the creative mechanism they use lets you in on the process and after watching it, you almost feel like you just lived it. In highlighting the lengths that the journalists at The Times go to - and the truth they are delivering - is undeniable. Also, as an art director, this spot is just pure perfection.

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Performance Art US, Wed, 11 Jan 2023 12:30:01 GMT