Interviews, insight & analysis on digital media & marketing

NDA Agency News: elvis, Dentsu, Wavemaker UK and more

Dobbies, the garden centre retailer, has unveiled its new Christmas campaign, “Dobbies: Find Your Christmust”. The multichannel push was developed in partnership with creative agency elvis. Dobbies has worked with elvis to develop a digital-first, integrated campaign, with the aim of delivering the brand’s best Christmas ever. It seeks to drive footfall and sales, as well as continuing to increase brand awareness. Against the backdrop of consumers being more conscious of their spending, the campaign presents Dobbies as a magical, stress-free festive destination, where money is well spent. The creative idea is inspired by the moment when your head is turned by that perfect Christmas item or experience that you simply must have – something Dobbies is calling a “Christmust”. A 20-second hero film, directed by Daniel Liakh at Spindle, features multiple vignettes of people finding their Christmust at Dobbies, highlighting the incredible feeling that finding that specific thing gives you.

Dentsu has extended its existing relationship with The Gym Group following the appointment of dentsu X to lead ATL planning, buying, reporting and overarching strategy. Fellow dentsu agency Merkle, already a long-standing partner of the fitness chain, will continue to oversee digital media planning and activation, and other digital projects. The decision to expand dentsu’s brief follows Merkle’s proven success in helping the business to deliver results, and a subsequent pitch process that showcased the combined expertise of both agencies. Dentsu X’s successful pitch leveraged the powerful alignment across dentsu agencies, which will create a united and seamless approach to meet The Gym Group’s growth objectives. This collaboration comes at an exciting time for The Gym Group as it has recently welcomed its new CEO Will Orr and reported positive half-year results showing member and revenue growth. The strategic media guidance provided by dentsu X and Merkle will play a key role in helping The Gym Group continue to adapt and thrive in the low-cost sector, which is the fastest-growing segment of the gym market. 

The Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) has collaborated with Wavemaker UK and Voxly Digital to develop the charity’s first interactive video chat experience. The tool has been created as part of the wider RNIB #BeforeYouAsk campaign, which aims to address the many misconceptions about sight loss, by educating the public through relatable scenarios to encourage them to change their attitudes and behaviours towards people with sight loss. A series of #BeforeYouAsk films use everyday relatable experiences; in the workplace, romantic relationships, applying make-up, watching football, travelling on the night bus and unavoidable school message groups, to banish myths around what it’s really like to live with sight loss. Hosted on the RNIB website, the #BeforeYouAsk interactive video chat tool is designed to address the weird, awkward, and at times hurtful questions that  blind and partially sighted people are frequently asked by sighted people about their day-to-day lives. It features over 40 questions and misconceptions sourced from people with sight loss, Ask the Public, Reddit, and Google predictive search form. The answers are provided in video form by the campaign’s blind and visually impaired cast.  

The EY organization (EY) has announced the launch of a new and fully integrated marketing campaign entitled “The Face of the Future.” Through this campaign, EY promotes its recently launched unifying artificial intelligence (AI) platform,, highlighting the need to put humans at the center of the AI transformation to help deliver on the exponential value the technology provides. To produce “The Face of the Future” the global organization enlisted more than 200 EY people from across the world. Each was photographed to create static images that were then animated against a moving face and speaking to a script using a proprietary AI model. To highlight every individual’s facial architecture, a specially adapted one-shot StyleGAN was created. From there, a single professional voice recording was transformed using voice AI to develop an unlimited number of new voices that matched the film’s moving faces precisely. This process yielded an asset that would previously have been near impossible to deliver and saved hundreds of filming and editing hours. EY collaborated with several agencies to produce and execute the content-rich integrated campaign, led by world-leading creative director Graham Fink of FinkDifferent, who conceived the creative direction in collaboration with Mark Goodwin of SquidInk. The campaign was a joint effort with Ogilvy UK and Hogarth Worldwide on content experience, Not Just Any (NJA) for production, The 5Gs for AI tech and EssenceMediacom for media planning. The human-centric logo flowing with an animated ‘i’ was developed with the support of Brandpie.