The Year in Review: David Walden

  • Year in Review brought to you by Marsden Inch
  • December 14, 2012
  • StopPress Team
The Year in Review: David Walden
Paul Statham

2012 was a comeback year for the Whybin\TBWA Group after something of an annus horribilis in 2011. It put Middle-earth into New Zealand, oversaw the biggest thing in banking with the surprisingly smooth National Bank/ANZ fusion, launched the Digital Arts Network by merging Shift and Tequila\, and its PR arm Eleven won a couple of PR agency of year awards. So chief executive David Walden, who sold a few shares and began the hunt for a successor, ended the year a pretty happy chappy. 

1) Favourite campaign that isn't yours

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vZtwLG4d

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AsHbmi_CngIThe Whittaker's work consistently delivers and I just love the spots where Nigella’s obvious assets are on show.

2) Favourite campaign that is yours

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NQGEvDqZVgg

2degrees. It’s really hard to keep the standard and momentum up after you’ve had a couple of years of work that has quickly turned a brand into an icon. 2degrees goes from strength to strength and the work reflects that. Whilst Rhys is a brilliant talent the writing continues to be top notch and with input from people such as Steve Saussey our 2degrees TV work continues to set the standard in the category.  

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BfIA9GFUlxUAlso, ANZ 'The Power of Two'. Bringing two brands together is never easy and when they are two banks it’s even trickier. When one bank has a rich heritage and enjoys a revered position it’s a very hard task. I love the way we have used the regional campaign featuring The Mentalist to demonstrate how the coming together of ANZ and National creates ‘The Power of Two’. And the Patrick Jane character with his teabags is a lovely light touch in what can be a category that takes itself far too seriously.

2) Least Favourite Campaign

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zqn5OCFTrcwSpeights. Call me old fashioned but I remember the southern man and ‘good on ya mate’. It was iconic and it made me smile. This new work makes me feel vaguely uncomfortable and particularly the resolution where the bloke comes to meet up with a couple of yuppy mates. It’s naff and a million miles from the campaign that Roy and Jeremy started.

3) Best Brand

Whittaker's. It's great to see a local company taking on the multinationals and winning.

4) Best Stoush

Dotcom vs. John Key. It started off badly for the big German because he really did look like an unpleasant nerd and a rich prick. But now he’s now become a darling of the media, he’s turned his wealth from being a curse to a benefit, managed his PR brilliantly and he’s tapped into that sense of Kiwis not wanting to be pushed around by the United States, FBI or the police. 

5) Heroes

Like others my vote goes to Lindsey Redding. His short lesson in perspective piece made people like me nod and go ‘you’re so right’.

6) Villains

All the anonymous buggers on the block. Again, as others have pointed out, this is a tough business and why we continually want to make ourselves look stupid and petulant in front of the business community and our clients is beyond me.

7) Most Memorable Marketing Moment

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FHtvDA0W34IRed Bull’s jump from outer space caught the globe's imagination.

8) A few predictions for 2013

Storytelling comes back as people begin to realise that you have to entertain as well as inform; the influence of Aussie retailers diminishes (can’t see it but you’ve got to be hopeful); and a few mega mergers happen (Saatchi’s and Publicis, DDB & Colenso and Whybin\TBWA all merge together, I become the chairman and Nick Garrett makes the tea, Justin Mowday sweeps up and we have the biggest car park in town). 

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