Chicago advertising often gets the cold shoulder. Here, then, are some pats on the back.
February 2, 2009
Given the grim climate in Chicago (the weather, the economy, the government), it’s high time we celebrate the unheralded, quality work coming out of our city’s many agencies. We hear a lot about what’s wrong with the people, places and things in the Chicago advertising community. I want to go another way. Hold to the good, as our pastor likes to say.
In this spirit, for the next few days, I’m going to feature campaigns from local shops that deserve praise… not punishment.
They may not be famous or ground breaking. But they are good. Join me as we give a warming hug to the City of Big Shoulders!
Let’s start with Chicago’s landmark agency, Leo Burnett. Having worked there 16 years, it’s also my “alma mater.” LBCO has been in the news for the same kind of struggles besetting most agencies and their clients: shrinking advertising budgets, layoffs, and turbulent change in business practices.
Still, the work they have done on Allstate deserves kudos for its great sureness during these worst of economic times. Actor Dennis Haybert calms and guides we jittery consumers, looking us right in the eye. He is a patriarch in the best sense of the word. Indeed, when he asks if we “are in good hands,” I know I/we could be with Allstate.
I’ve secretly admired this iteration of Burnett’s long running “Good Hands” campaign for some time now. Secretly, because I know it’s not a creative showcase. But I’m being childish. This advertising deserves a medal of honor for it’s steady hand, especially in this climate. Take a look at the attached commercial about surviving a recession. The voice over says it all: “It’s back to basics and the basics are good.” So is this campaign.