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Connect Five: Stephen McGinnis

Interviewer: Rebecca Worley
Interviewee: Stephen McGinnis
Role: Creative Director, Video + Interactive, LA

Our LA based Creative Director Stephen McGinnis shares examples of ads that don’t feel like ads and why they are much less likely to be ignored.

What project at Five by Five are you most proud of and why?

The “Destiny: Rise of Iron” Gjallarhorn Exploration was a beautiful way to launch our 3D web capabilities. The digital ad looked pretty slick and opened the doors to some new opportunities.

What launch campaign do you wish you’d worked on?

I would have loved to have worked on the Patrón Perfectionist campaign. There were a lot of moving parts to that launch and it looked like a lot of fun!

What frustrates you about the industry?

Each campaign has its own challenges that pop up, but I wouldn’t say it’s frustrating. In fact it’s super satisfying when you solve one of those problems, break through a perceived wall, or overcome a brand’s unique challenges.

How can brands be smarter with their budgets when it comes to creative?

When the focus of a campaign is strictly ROI, I feel brands miss out on opportunities. As everything has become more digital/connected we have trained ourselves to avoid and ignore ads. The ads that break through are the ones that don’t feel like ads at all, for example: The Coca Cola “Happiness Factory”, that featured a whimsical journey through a Coca Cola vending machine.

What is your favourite ad / launch of all time, why is it your favourite?

Definitely the Wendy’s “Where’s the beef?” campaign. The first ad in the campaign was mild enough, but soon spiralled into a national phenomena. Anyone who grew up in North America in the 80’s knows the campaign, and it’s just as entertaining today as it was then. In 2011, Wendy’s re-launched the campaign proving there was a lot of life left in the iconic tagline.

By Abi Stocker
Producer

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