Tired of Friends and Family Telling You Their Ad Ideas? This Campaign’s for You

Effie Awards' amusing call for entries

Headshot of Tim Nudd

One frustrating thing about being in the ad business is that every other living soul on earth thinks they can do your job—and probably do it better than you. This is typically made clear by friends and family telling you their ideas for ads—ideas of such clear and utter brilliance that clearly they're doing you a huge favor just by mentioning them. The subtext—that you obviously haven't come up with anything this great, or they'd have heard about it—is unspoken but implied.

Of course, without fail, their ideas are idiotic, impractical or both. But this is little solace. All that says is they wouldn't know a good idea if it ran them over—making your chances of doing something that actually impresses them, for the right reasons, basically nil.

The moments are cringeworthy indeed, but at least someone feels your pain.

The Effie Awards just released their 2016 call for entries—seven videos from The VIA Agency that will be painfully, comically familiar to any creative who's had to field a pitch from a loved one who's dreaming of Cannes.

The theme is, "Not every idea is a good idea." Check out the spots here:

The spots will run on YouTube and Facebook, on the Effies site and in email blasts.

"With director Chris Bean leading the charge, we were able to find the right balance of performance and reality for our cast," says Mary Hanifin, VIA's executive director of production. "We worked with many of the talented folks at UCB [Upright Citizens Brigade] as well as equally talented non-actors in and around our business. Most notably, one of our favorite real pitchmen—Vinny, the superintendent at 411 Lafayette in the elevator scene."

"One of the few perks of working in the ad business are the unsolicited ideas we get from people," adds executive creative director Amos Goss. "For me, it's my accountant and father-in-law. Their ideas are sometimes funny, sometimes insane, usually completely oblivious of all logistics … but they're always entertaining as hell."

"Everyone who works in this business has been 'pitched' ideas by friends and family," says senior copywriter Kristen Kriisa. "It's not that they're bad ideas necessarily. They just wouldn't stand up to the realities we deal with on a day to day basis."

"Coming up with an idea is easy. But,crafting that idea into something powerful, impactful and effective is a different challenge altogether," says group creative director Jake Benjamin. "That's why the Effies is such an important show. It celebrates work that actually achieves what it set out to do."


Client: The Effie Awards

Agency: The VIA Agency, Portland, Maine

Executive Creative Directors: Amos Goss, Teddy Stoecklein

Group Creative Director: Jake Benjamin

Associate Creative Director, Art Director: Bobby Pfeiffenberger

Senior Copywriter: Kristen Kriisa

Senior Art Director: Mikael Kriisa

Associate Creative Director, Copywriter: Chris Jacobs

Client Strategist: Luke Stevens

Executive Director of Production: Mary Hanifin

Production: Assembly Films

Director: Christopher Bean

Executive Producers: Gloria Colangelo, Becky Donahue

Line Producer: Kyra DeMarco

Director of Photography: Gerry Wenner

Postproduction: The RecRoom:

Editor: Bryan Moak:

Audio: Weston Fonger, Yessian

Casting: Sidecar:

Casting Director: Anthony Pichette

@nudd Tim Nudd is a former creative editor of Adweek.
Publish date: October 6, 2015 https://dev.adweek.com/creativity/tired-friends-and-family-telling-you-their-ad-ideas-campaigns-you-167392/ © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT