GoaFest 2008: The Donald Gunn Report 2007

By , agencyfaqs!, Goa | In Advertising | April 07, 2008
Ad industry veteran Donald Gunn, who compiles The Gunn Report every year, says 2007 saw "dynamite creative work". Here's a quick update from his report, which has become an official measure of competitive excellence for the advertising industry

The GoaFest & #BANNER1 & # would be incomplete without The Gunn Report, compiled and presented by adman Donald Gunn, which combines the winners' lists of the top 74 award shows in the world.

Gunn started off his presentation by showing Commercials We Remember from 2007. The first one was from Germany for automobile brand Smart. The campaign was called No Backseats and consisted of a collage of scenes from movies and shows, in which people in the front seats were being attacked by those in the back seats. The ad ends with the message of no backseats!

The second TV commercial, from Argentina, was one for Axe 3, in which two girls bang into each other to form a third girl altogether while chasing a guy on a scooter. The ad conveyed the message of Axe's deodorants where two different deodorants, 1 and 2, can be mixed to form a third scent.

Donald Gunn
The third film was one for Tide from the US. The TVC shows a man being interviewed for a job. The interviewee can't help but stare at a stain on the man's shirt; every time the man speaks, the stain comes to life and speaks as well. The ad ends with the message: 'Silence the Stain'.

The fourth film was the Dove Evolution ad from Europe, which shows a regular girl being made up and photographed. Her picture is then morphed to appear on a billboard for a foundation brand. The message, 'No wonder that our perception of beauty is distorted', appears at the end.

The Gunn Report revealed that the top 10 most awarded countries in the world in 2007 were the US, Great Britain, Argentina, Brazil, Japan. Spain, Germany, Thailand, Sweden and Singapore, in that order. The most awarded advertisers in the world were Nike, Volkswagen, Sony, Coca-Cola, Axe/Lynx, Adidas, World Wildlife Fund, MTV and Toyota in that order. Greenpeace and Microsoft shared the No. 10 spot.

Gunn said, "2007 saw the return of the giants. It was a good year for Unilever, P&G and Coca-Cola."

Among the top five most awarded print ads in 2007 was the one for Clima Bicycle Locks, which depicted bicycles attached to poles to show how safe the locks are. Another ad in the Top 5 was the one for Marmite Squeezy, which showed subjects like Mr Bean and bull fighting, made of the bread spread, with a tagline that says, 'You either love it or hate it'. This was done to show that the spread has a distinctive taste that people either love or hate. The ads for 42 Below Vodka and Stuffit Deluxe shared the third spot, while at No. 5 were the ads for East Tourism Timor.

Keeping up with the trends in the industry, this year, the Gunn Report had a separate rating for Interactive work. The most awarded ads in the Interactive section were Nike's Nike+ in first place, Ikea's Come Into the Closet in second place, Volkswagen GTI's GTI Features in third place, Nike's The Chain in fourth place, and Visit Sweden Tourism's Stockholm the Musical in fifth place.

The top five most awarded production companies in 2007 were MJZ (London, Los Angeles, New York), Phenomena (Bangkok), Gorgeous (London) and Stink (London) at spots one to four, in that order; Partizan (London), (London, Paris, New York, etc.) and Rebolucion (Buenos Aires) shared the No. 5 spot. Gunn also applauded Mumbai based production house Equinox, which made it to the Top 25 in 2007.

The most awarded directors in the world in 2007 were Thanonchai Sornsrivichai (Thailand) at No. 1, Tom Kuntz (the US) and Ivan Zacharias (Czech Republic) at No. 2, and Andy Fogwill (Argentina) and Dario Piana (Italy) at No. 4

Gunn then named the most awarded agencies in the TV/print category: Fallon (London) and Dentsu (Tokyo, Osaka, Fukuoka) at No. 4, DDB London at No. 3, Saatchi & Saatchi (New York, Los Angeles) at No. 2 and TBWAChiatDay&TBWAMedia Arts at No. 1.

AlmapBBDO (Sao Paulo), AMV.BBDO (London), Arnold Worldwide (Boston), DDB (London) and Dentsu (Tokyo, Osaka) have made it to the Top 50 all nine years of the Gunn Report.

The most awarded Interactive agencies in 2007 were Farfar (Stockholm) and Crispin Porter + Bogusky (Miami) at the pole position, and Forsman & Bodenfors (Gothenburg), R/GA (New York) and Goodby, Silverstein & Partners (San Francisco) at No. 3, 4 and 5, respectively.

In the list of most awarded agency networks, Grey came in at No. 16, which Gunn commended. Publicis came in at No. 11. Wieden + Kennedy moved up to No. 10 from No. 12 in 2006. Lowe slid by one spot from No. 8 in 2006 to No. 9 in 2007, exchanging places with McCann, which was No. 9 in 2006, but is at No. 8 in 2007.

JWT was at No. 7, having slid down from No. 4 in 2006. Gunn said, "In 2006, JWT made the biggest surge ever in the Top 10 in the history of the Gunn Report by moving up from No. 9 to No. 4. It has slid a few spots, but it is still a big improvement from 2004-05." He also applauded the network for winning the Agency of the Year award at the recent AdFest in Thailand.

At No. 6 was Leo Burnett, whose best performing offices, Gunn said, were Chicago, Milan and Bangkok. At No. 5 was O&M, which moved up one spot from last year. "O&M's massive strength comes from its Asian offices," said Gunn.

DDB Worldwide was at No. 4 with its Europe offices reportedly doing the best. TBWA Worldwide was at No. 3, while Saatchi & Saatchi was at No. 2. BBDO Worldwide clocked in as the No. 1 agency network of 2007.

The top five most awarded commercials in the world in 2007 were Paint for Sony Bravia LCD TV, Underwater World for Ariston Aqualtis Washing Machine, Happiness Factory for Coca-Cola, Beard/Trade/Leak for Skittles and Grace/Fever/Videogame for Combos, in that order.

Gunn shared some other memorable ads of 2007, which included the SmoothE face scrub ads, the Mackintosh ads and the Happydent TVC by McCann Mumbai, which received loud applause from the audience.

He also shared details about the effectiveness of some ads, such as Dove's Evolution, whose original viral generated free media coverage estimated at $150 million. "Could this be the highest ROI in the history of advertising?" asked Gunn.

The Ariston Aqualtis Washing Machine's sales went up by more than 30 per cent in the on-air period and it became the biggest selling washing machine in Italy, while Happydent's TVC caused a volume upsurge post airing that required manufacturer Perfetti van Melle to build new production capacity.

"The year 2007 saw dynamite creative work and dynamite results for brands. Bring on 2008," said Gunn enthusiastically.

He said that compared to 2006, when agencies from about 16 countries participated in award shows, in 2007, agencies from about 23 countries, even smaller countries like Romania and Peru, entered their work. "This is indeed a trend to be celebrated," said Gunn.

He then talked about the Gunn Report, an online library of the best TV commercials of all time from 1962 to 2007. "Here one can search for and find, view and review, select from and finally make for oneself a reel from the best commercials ever made for any advertising subject under the sun," said Gunn.

Gunn, who is of Scottish descent, has worked with Leo Burnett since 1962. He worked as an account executive for six years before becoming a copywriter. He then served as Burnett's managing director in the Netherlands and Switzerland. After retirement, he served as president of the Cannes Festival in 1998 and 1999. In 1999, he launched the annual Gunn Report and Showreel of the Year. He was dubbed by Ad Age as "the man with the best job in advertising".