Big year for candy and cars

Meet the CRC's top advertiser runners-up: Mars Canada, BMW/Mini Canada and Subaru.
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Meet the top advertiser runners-up in this year’s Creative Report Card.

Third place: Mars Canada
Notable awards won: Three Bronze Cannes Lions, Silver at the One Show

With Proximity’s help, M&M’s famous spokescandy, Red, was sucked into Google Street View when water spilled
on a keyboard he happened to be standing on. Torontonians were offered clues on Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare and in QR codes posted around the city, and the world saw its first-ever digital scavenger hunt.
Average time spent on the website was more than 19 minutes, four times the industry average, and the campaign garnered more than 21 million total impressions when Twitter, PR and QR code impressions are all added up. Despite being a Toronto-based project – and Canadian-only contest – the campaign proved to be an international hit.

Fourth place: BMW/Mini Canada
Notable awards won: Silver LIAA, Bronze AToMiC

BMW and Mini Canada’s big winner this year was the Mini Vending Machine, designed to promote the four new Mini colours, and showcase the updates to the car. With creative from Taxi 2, the “machine” was digitally projected on walls around Toronto. Passersby were invited to text a short code to Mini to activate the vending machine. The selected car would drive around the projection in full animation, whipping through a pinball machine and crashing through the glass, among other scenes.
On BMW’s side, the company launched its 1M videos, pitting the car against brick walls: the car drove and drifted through holes in the walls just large enough for it to pass at the right angle. The video, by Cundari, has more than three million hits on YouTube and with 12% year-over-year growth, BMW topped the luxury car market in 2011.
BMW and Mini saw an 11% increase in sales in 2011, topping out car sales at more than 32,000 at press time.
Marc Balfour, brand communication manager,  BMW Group Canada, says the companies will focus on innovating the products and advertising messages in 2012.
“It’s never easy coming off such a strong year creatively,” he says. “But we have a lot of exciting products coming next year, so we’ll have some great stories to tell.”

Fifth place: Subaru
Notable awards won: Bronze Cannes Lion, Bronze Atomic, three Gold CASSIES

Subaru’s big win this year was for its “Pure Performance” campaign: a flip-book style cartoon was laid across the boards of a racetrack, and as the real car zoomed by, the cartoon sprang to life, with creative from DDB. The cartoon car, uninhibited by ASC guidelines, drifts, speeds and jumps (over a canyon, no less) across the screen.
The video had almost a million views at press time, and sales for Subaru increased by 130% shortly after the campaign.
In 2011, the economy’s rollercoaster and the Japanese earthquake and tsunami had a big impact on Subaru’s business, so the car co has decided against increasing ad spend for 2012, according to Ted Lalka, VP, product planning and marketing with Subaru. It will find the most economical ways of promoting itself, with more online work for 2012 and a focus on creating attention-grabbing campaigns.
“We think of our brand as the smart kid in the back of the classroom, hand up, demanding to be noticed,” says Lalka.

Jump to:

Creative Report Card intro
James Ready expands in 2012: Leo Burnett and the beerco top the CRC
Other Leo award winners
BBDO and Wrigley get global attention
Top advertiser runners-up: big year for candy and cars
Big agency movers and newcomers
Rethinking on a budget: CD duo Chris Staples and Ian Grais take third
Art & copy runners-up
Agencies: full list
Advertisers: full list
Creative directors: full list
Art directors: full list
Copywriters: full list
Methodology