Copywriter Robin Stam defies rules, challenges conventions and loathes the status quo in advertising. After five hectic years in Dutch advertising he studied at the Miami Ad School in Hamburg and worked at Duval Guillaume Brussels. Now he's back in Holland again to work for Lemz Amsterdam.
Monday, August 30, 2010
New IKEA campaign
The news video about the new IKEA campaign
If at first the idea is not absurd, then there's no hope for it. This quote of none other than Albert Einstein, applies totally to the new IKEA campaign that I've made at Lemz. To show the versatility of IKEA, we're going to broadcast a new TV-commercial every day. So that means 365 commercials a year!
To make such an amount of TV-commercials sounds absurd. But we knew from the start that, in order to win a huge pitch like this, we had to create a tornado instead of a nice summer's breeze. In fact, the idea sounded so absurd that everybody in Lemz thought: yes, it's risky, but what if it is possible... From then we never let go of the idea anymore.
And then we started trying out if we can really do it. Teamwork was essential here. From the very first beginning, we worked with production company Cake to see if a project like this was possible within the limits of time, technique and budget. Hundreds of scripts and a few test video's later, proved that it was possible. But the real test came on the actual shooting, where we had to run through the IKEA store to make 14 commercials in just one day.
This Wednesday, the first IKEA commercial will be aired. And, of course, many many many more will follow.
It's not that I like being at the dentist. But it might seem so, judging by the amount of time I spend there. Since I turned 14 I've always had problems with my teeth. I don't know why, but I guess it's nature's way to compensate for me being resistant against diseases. Any physical problem I get is always teeth-related. And Amsterdam is a good place to be if you need dental care. Okay, you have to plan your appointments a month in advance, but at least the dentists are good here.
My new dentist said, after refilling a tooth from which a part had broken off, that I already had quite a lot of crowns and fillings for my age. And he warned me that if it goes on like this, I might need a denture in about twenty years. He also asked me how many sugar moments I have in one day. It's the amount of times you eat, drink anything that contains sugar (including fruit, fruit juice, tea with sugar and wine). I told him I lost count. "So," he said, "if you'd just reduce the amount of sugar moments you might get rid of all your teeth problems".
That's a nice perspective for somebody who has gone through all the horrors imaginable at the dentist office and the hospital. So I decided to listen to the man. So today I didn't touch the jar of candy that they put on the table during a meeting with IKEA. It's tough, because I love sugar. And instead of drinking wine the entire evening, it's even better to drink a bottle in once because that would count as only one sugar moment. I don't know what a doctor would say about it, but I'll drink to that.
Isn't it ironic? I went to Lemz because I wanted to make different work than traditional agencies and now I'm making more films than ever before. Not that it bothers me in any way, because the commercials that will come out soon are far from traditional. On Friday I shot a commercial with 25 children on it and today I shot a total of 14 commercials for IKEA in one day. And on Wednesday we'll have the final presentation of a 2 minute animation film (yes, another one).
There are so many projects running at the same time, that me and my teampartner need to split up so we can attend two different edits at the same time. It's a pity that I cannot be everywhere at the same time, but at least I'm not bored. Right now I'm just very sleepy so I'm going to get a good rest before my working week officially starts.
There's so much to do over here that I don't know the planning until I arrive at the agency. Looking at casting proposals, recording voice overs, shootings, writing heading for billboards, perfectionizing scripts, pre PPM's, PPM's, presentations, meetings. Yesterday I found out that there was a meeting, only because a director of one of the projects walked in. It was then that I knew I've completely lost the overview. Even Luiz is working on other projects than I do because we don't have the time to work together on everything. But I'm glad that I'm more productive than ever. And as a result, soon there's going to be a lot of new work on this blog.
Like father, like son: rolling in the mud during a festival
And another week passed by. Time flies when you're having fun. I've had vacation for just a week and after a regular timeshift during the day, it's great to be in a more flexible mode again. Sleeping out is great when you're not used to it anymore. But it wasn't exactly a quiet vacation. I spent the first few days enjoying Amsterdam and the next days I was at two different festivals in Belgium.
The Belgian cities seem to have an enormous budget for their festivals. Especially the small ones. In my city of birth Alkmaar they are already happy when Marco Borsato is willing to throw a concert, but in Lokeren a festival week takes 10 days and there are artists like Alice Cooper, Public Enemy and the Human League! I only went there on Thursday. One one evening I've seen both the Dandy Warhols and Sisters of Mercy. The day after I went to the Dranouter festival, where my favorite was the Italian jazz legend Paolo Conte. This week I went back to work again, exhausted from my well deserved vacation.