Pushing luck: NZ Lotteries and DDB take the risky route for new Instant Kiwi campaign—UPDATED

After NZ Lotteries’ big rehash of Instant Kiwi, DDB launched the much-loved, much-awarded and completely OTT ‘It Can All Change in an Instant‘ musical number in 2010. And while the humour is still there in the follow-up ‘It Pays to Push your Luck’, they have taken a slightly more complicated approach this time round.  

Kirsty Phillips, Instant Kiwi marketing manager, says it’s a lot different to anything they’ve done in the past, primarily because it was largely unscripted.

“That keeps it fresh and spontaneous, but it did make it that much harder to sell internally because it was such a leap of faith. We really needed to have a lot of faith in DDB, the director [The Sweet Shop’s Stuart McDonald, he of Summer Height’s High fame] and Jesse [Griffin],” she says.

Youtube Video

Youtube Video

Youtube Video

Youtube Video
She says the garage sale scenario, which shows how financial benefits can arise after Griffin gets creative and convinces attendees to buy a range useless things like prepaid alibis, superhero undies, dodgy unicycles, mismatched skates and air guitars (those who believe gambling is a tax on the stupid might find the ads quite ironic), is also a good way to ease viewers into the push your luck concept because it’s a familiar scenario for Kiwis.

And, with a total of 21 executions (see them here), there’s much more luck-pushing to come, with the scenarios including an audition for an eight-year-old’s birthday party and some hijinks at a department store (which is Phillips’ favourite).

While conventional talent and scripts were involved with the garage sale, Griffin and McDonald held a series of workshops about the different scenarios in an effort to arm him with “lots and lots of ammo” so that they could surprise the actors and capture those genuine reactions. And, as a result of the entertaining ad libbing, she says they didn’t end up using the scripts anyway.

The other two scenarios took more of a reality TV-esque approach, with some actual unknowing humans happy to have their moment of fame being filmed and then agreeing to be featured in the ads, so while it was often a surprise for the talent, seeing what happened was also a surprise for those behind the scenes.

Phillips says digital has already launched (another point of difference for this campaign is that there’s an unusually big online component to it), cinema launches this week and the TV ads, which provide more evidence of NZ Lotteries’ cognisance of how powerful music is by featuring a dose of Tone Loc,  launch on Sunday. And Phillips is hoping that all the various executions being drip-fed into the wild will keep the punters interested and will be in action for the next 12-18 months.

UPDATE: “The campaign is fresh and brave and without equal in this market,” DDB Group NZ executive creative director Andy Fackrell. “It’s a great idea, beautifully executed and I have every faith it’s going to have great cut through with the target because it’s so damn funny.”

With Push Your Luck aiming to gain the attention of a new, infrequent Instant Kiwi player, Sparkphd & DDB instigated a significant shift from the brands traditional media approach to a content led strategy, requiring a flexible and dynamic campaign approach.

Spark PHD and PHDIQ developed a digitally-led launch strategy that aimed to ignite conversation within our consumers’ social world. By tapping into their desire to be involved with the ‘next new thing’ Instant Kiwi had the opportunity centre the Push Your Luck content around existing moments of fun, play and anticipation.


Agency: DDB Group New Zealand

Client: New Zealand Lotteries

Product: Instant Kiwi

Group Executive Creative Director: Andy Fackrell

Group Executive Creative Director: Toby Talbot

Creative Director: Steve Kane

Art Director/copywriter: Jonathan McMahon

Art Director/copywriter: Lisa Fedyszyn

Designer: Toby Morris

Executive Producer: Judy Thompson

Agency Producer: Jane Mill

Agency Producer: Rosie Grayson

Agency Producer: Tania Jeram

Production Company: The Sweet Shop

Director: Stuart McDonald

Producer: Ben Dailey

Executive Producer: Fiona King

Managing Director: George Mackenzie

DOP: Crighton Bone

Editor: Peter Sciberras @ the Butchery

Assistant Editor: Michael Lutman @ the Butchery

Visual Effects Artist: Eugene [email protected] The Refinery

Colourist: Vincent Taylor @ The Refinery

Sound Design: Jon Cooper @ The Coopers of Franklin Road,

Sound Design: Craig Conway @ Final Sound.

Animation: Tony Leslie @ Waxeye.

Animation: Paul Carter @ Waxeye.

Group Business Director: Angela Watson

Group Business Director: Aimee McCammon

Account Director: Jenny Travers

Account Manager: Peter Jiang

Planner: Thinza Mon

Chief Executive: Wayne Pickup

Chief Financial Officer: Warren Sailsbury

Head of Marketing: Wendy Rayner

Marketing Manager: Kirsty Phillips

Brand Manager: John Alexander

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