The Generosity Journal: Steve Kane

As part of our series dedicated to celebrating good work and inspiring a bit more generosity, Steve Kane, Y&R’s managing director, acknowledges the impact of The Warehouse Challenge. 

Being of a certain age I remember the first TV ads for The Warehouse. It was 30 seconds of pandemonium; lurid shots of banana sun loungers on plastic beaches, glistening boxes of Continental chocolates bound in 40 metres of flexi hose and more crash zooms of four litre Round-up than you could shake a starburst at, all set to the soundtrack of a demented chimpanzee beating a banjo to death. But these were carefree times. Gone was the threat of nuclear annihilation, Mr Potato Head was in the Beehive and Strawpeople ruled the airwaves. 

It was also the last time I sat through an ad for The Warehouse for 20 years, until DDB put out The Warehouse Challenge spots towards the end of last year.

These very polished and adroit mash ups of The Generation Game meets The Amazing Race deftly communicate the stable of premium brands that the new and improved Warehouse now offers.

They’re nicely shot [by Sunday Punch]and have been produced to achieve the near impossible: 60 seconds of watchable retail. So much so that almost six months after first seeing them I ventured into my local Warehouse a fortnight ago in search of a name brand DVD player.

While social media has provided consumers with a multitude of channels to vent their frustration about a given product or service, it’s rare to see brands acknowledging customer dissatisfaction in a TVC. Opening the spots with lapsed customers addressing the negative perceptions was a nice piece of shadow kissing within the format.

I have no idea if the ads have seen disgruntled Warehouse customers return to the big red sheds in their droves but they deserve to. They worked on me.

A doffing of the cap to the retail impresarios of 80 Greys Ave.

  • The One Percent Collective is all about a lot of people giving a little to make it easier for its selected charities (and charities in general). It could be, for example, donating one percent of your total income, one percent of the door takings from an event or one percent commission on a month’s sales. But it doesn’t necessarily have to be financial. It’s also looking for people to donate time, expertise and awareness to the cause, so check out some of the ways individuals, artists and businesses can help here

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