Cut Your Creatives: Run a Retro Ad

Some brands really need to evaluate why they're developing new campaigns. Juicy Fruit is a prime example. They recently started running a TV campaign with country singer Julianne Hough. It's supposed to be a rockin' reimagination of the classic 80s Juicy Fruit ads. And perhaps it is. However, the only thing I ever think about when I see the product in store and now watch this commercial is their ubiquitous 80s ads of beachgoers and skiiers. When you have a brand identity that is so nostalgically seared into the brains of such a large swath of the population, why not explore how to use that? The flush of positive feelings and memories that a viewer experiences when watching their classic 80s spots really can't be replicated when watching an ad produced today. Sure, twelve year olds might not get it, but the commercial above doesn't appear to be targeting 12 year-olds anyway - but rather the Dancing With the Stars set.

A classic ad should be good for more than generating clicks on youtube.

I've been told that running old ads isn't possible because it's so difficult to track down the actors and get permission to use them. I think the real reason we're not seeing this is that it's counter-intuitive for a creative. It would be hard to raise one's hand in a strategy meeting and propose that your agency do nothing other than pull out an old Betacam tape.

Sure, you can argue that the product design has changed, so the sticks of Juicy Fruit in the 80s commercial below are outdated. If a product truly has changed or if the strategy behind the targeting is DRASTICALLY different, then no, a brand shouldn't be running old ads. However, if you're Juicy Fruit, a gum with a seemingly nebulous target and the same exact product, then it makes sense.

If we've relived 80s fashions, music, childhood toys and other related ephemera for the last 5-10 years, why shouldn't some brands consider re-running the decade's most effective ads if they're still targeting the same general demo? It's very strange that no one is trying this. Consider it, Juicy Fruit.


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