The A-List: Wunderman Thompson

A multidisciplinary service offering which takes a 360° view of both client and customer

To help The Royal Canadian Legion raise awareness of Remembrance Day among millennial gamers, Wunderman Thompson used available Fortnite creative platform tools to produce a custom Fortnite Remembrance Island game featuring recreations of WWI trenches, D-Day beaches, a Canadian military cemetery and the Vimy Ridge memorial cenotaph. Player objectives were to discover 30 museum-like info panels and follow poppies to the memorial.

To help The Royal Canadian Legion raise awareness of Remembrance Day among millennial gamers, Wunderman Thompson produced a custom Fortnite Remembrance Island game featuring recreations of WWI trenches, D-Day beaches, a Canadian military cemetery and the Vimy Ridge memorial cenotaph.

If advertising is a business looking for a new model, this two-year-old merged entity of WPP companies JWT, Wunderman, and Mirum believes it has found it: part creative agency, part consulting firm, part technology company.

As digital transformation has forced client organizations to rethink their approach to customers, Wunderman Thompson Canada has built a multidisciplinary offering aimed at capturing the full funnel, and a non-linear process designed to exploit the potential of cross disciplinary collaboration.

As CEO Jeff Dack explains, “The traditional agency process is a waterfall model where the client briefs the account person, who briefs the planner, who then briefs the creative directors, who then brief their teams,” says Dack. “We just don’t work that way anymore. We take far more of a marketing technology, product-based approach where creative, strategy and technology are at the table together from the get-go.”

This 360° view of the customer experience is reflected in Wunderman Thompson’s service offering, which includes commerce, insights, communications, consulting, CRM and CX, with technology touching all of them. This model means that teams are built around clients, not around disciplines. Says Dack, “I don’t think there is any other agency in Canada built this way.”

How does this look from a project perspective? Take WT’s recent work for The Royal Canadian Legion. In an effort to educate younger generations about Remembrance Day, WT built a video game that lived within the popular Fortnite battle royale franchise. Remembrance Island recreates historic WWI and WWII battlefields where Canadians lost their lives. A hit among young gamers, it has become a permanent interactive exhibit at the Canadian War Museum. This exercise in software-building-as-marketing benefited greatly from WT’s multidisciplinary model.

How do you generate excitement among millennials for a new line of breaded chicken and shrimp tenders? You pretend they’re a fashion item and launch them like you would a sneaker drop. For Church’s Chicken’s Texas Tenders, Wunderman Thompson created a lookbook with beauty shots and clever product names such as ‘The Lone Star’ and ‘The Longhorn.’

How do you generate excitement among millennials for a new line of breaded chicken and shrimp tenders? You pretend they’re a fashion item and launch them like you would a sneaker drop. For Church’s Chicken’s Texas Tenders, Wunderman Thompson created a lookbook with beauty shots and clever product names such as ‘The Lone Star’ and ‘The Longhorn.’

Another strength of WT is its borderless approach to project teams. For Church’s Chicken, WT Toronto partnered with WT Atlanta to launch this American QSR’s new chicken and shrimp tenders. To reach a younger target, WT took a cue from the world of athletic footwear, where ‘sneaker drops’ are major product-launch events that often give out lookbooks to showcase the product line. WT created a lookbook parody titled the Texas Tenders Collection, complete with beauty shots and product names such as The Longhorn, The Lone Star and The Outlaw. It lit up social channels and was an AdAge “Editor’s Pick.” The best part? The product sold out in one month.

While WT signed the agency pact not to enter any awards shows in 2020, this year has already seen some momentum with the Remembrance Island campaign winning at this year’s Atomic Awards, and the Pay Tribute campaign for the Royal Canadian Legion and HSBC receiving a recent nomination at the Webby’s.

More importantly, the firm has seen wins in the new business category, taking on cannabis provider FIGR for brand-building, advertising assets, website development and app development; signing on with cybersecurity provider NPC for strategic and creative development in digital B2B channels, and two other recent wins currently under NDA.

If these successes are any indication, WT’s seamless, simultaneous approach may just be where the industry needs to go.

CONTACT:
Jeff Dack
CEO, Wunderman Thompson Canada
jeff.dack@wundermanthompson.com

The 2021 A-Listers:

Intro

Zulu Alpha Kilo: from strength to strength

Target: natural born storytellers

doug&partners: ready for whatever’s next

UM: winning in an uncertain world

C&B: connecting on a deeper level

Initiative: doubling down on innovation and creating cultural velocity

Media Experts: shaping what’s next

Giants & Gentlemen: the power of unwavering philosophy

DDB: the power of informed creative

Citizen Relations: making every conversation count