Zulu Alpha Kilo Pitches Both Clinton and Trump with an RFP

Independent, Toronto-based agency Zulu Alpha Kilo found an unusual way to get attention stateside, sending an RFP to the campaigns of presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump to become either candidates agency of record — or both candidates, simultaneously.

“We’re going to the top baby and I’m not talking about P&G, I’m not talking about Nike. That’s small time,” says fictional “Chief Executive Executive Officer Frank Zulu” at the beginning of the spot, “I’m talking about you, Donald Trump 2016, and/or you, Hillary Clinton 2016. We are willing to work on both your campaigns at once.”

Looks like someone’s trying to edge in on Droga5’s territory. While Zulu was presumably not among the agencies contacted by the Clinton campaign for future work in May, they do have a pitch in mind for the former Secretary of State. The “full-server” agency offers to build a firewall, and is “able to send, receive, forward, archive and delete all those pesky emails of yours.”

For Señor Trump, the agency has a different selling-point: “Make Combovers Great Again” hats. 

For Zulu Alpha Kilo, the video is just the latest in a line of self-promotional efforts. Back in March the agency released a series of videos promoting the launch of its new website by making fun of other agency websites. At the beginning of the year, the independent agency released a video celebrating its seventh anniversary. Last November the agency launched its “#saynotospec” effort aiming to end agency spec work and, of course, there was an agency holiday card — the unfortunate “Jingle Butts.”

Zulu’s “thriving content creation division,” zulubot handled production on this latest effort, which manages to edge in on the Pokemon Go craze as well as the 2016 election. There’s a point of overkill of agency self-promotional efforts and Zulu Alpha Kilo have arguably crossed it. To be fair, though, the spot isn’t completely devoid of charm, as the Pokemon Go reference is almost worth a chuckle, and at least the agency doesn’t take itself too seriously, freely admitting they know absolutely nothing about American politics in the process of jokingly pitching the Republican and Democratic candidates. By the way, if you want a closer look at the parody Trump hats from the video, Zulu totally has you covered

Agency: Zulu Alpha Kilo
Creative Director: Zak Mroueh
CD/Writer: Jon Webber
Art Director: Allan Mah
Agency Producer: Tara Handley, Ola Stodulska
Production House: zulubot
Director: Zak Mroueh
Director of Photography: Mike Headford
Editor: Jay Baker
Talent: Doug Murray
Transfer: Pixel Underground
Colourist/Transfer: Roslyn Di Sisto
Engineer: Stephen Stepanic
Sound Recordist: Jeff Reyes
Location Manager: Daniel Kaplan
Casting Director: Shasta Lutz
Stylist: Sansyrae St. Martin
Social Media Team: Jamie Cuthbertson, Emma Brooks, Sean Bell

Zulu Alpha Kilo Engages in ‘FUNraising’ for Make-A-Wish

Zulu Promotes National Advertising Challenge

Zulu Alpha Kilo launched an awareness campaign to promote the National Advertising Challenge (NAC), formerly the National Advertising Awards (NAA), with the intention of doubling last year’s submissions.

The campaign coincides with the release of NAC’s nine creative briefs, “sponsored by Canadian marketers looking for solutions across nine categories (Big Ideas, Campaign, Student, Print, OOH, Wild Card, Not for Profit, Media Innovation, and Digital).” Winning teams will receive a trip to Cannes, for the International Festival of Creativity.

The briefs are at the center of Zulu’s 90-second video for the campaign, which attempts to use humor to draw attention to the NAC. In the spot, a creative resource manager discovers a young creative printing out the NAC briefs. Worried about the agency juggling its already full workload, she is stressed out at the prospect of adding more to the agency’s workload, and responds as you might expect. Zulu Alpha Kilo worked with production company Someplace Nice and director Pete Henderson on the spot.

“We have big aspirations for the NAC, but we were facing a serious comprehension issues within the creative community,” said Ellie Metrick, marketing and communications manager at NAC, in a statement. “This year’s online video goes a long way in explaining that we offer creatives an opportunity to do original work in exchange for a chance to go to Cannes.”


Agency: Zulu Alpha Kilo

Client (Company): National Advertising Challenge

Creative Director: Zak Mroueh

Art Director: Ari Elkouby

Copywriter: George Ault

Agency Producer: Tara Handley

Production House: Someplace Nice

Director: Pete Henderson

Account Team: Alexandra Potter

Client: Ellie Metrick

Production House Producer: Robbie McNamara

Video Post Facility / Editing Company: Rooster

Editor: Chris Parkins

Online/Transfer: Fort York

Flame Artist: Lauren Rempel

Audio Post Facility/Music House: Zulu Alpha Kilo

Audio Director: Stephen Stepanic

Engineer: Stephen Stepanic

Agency Creatives Need to Shut Up About Entering Ad Contests, and Here's Why

Attention, creatives: You have actual paying clients, and shouldn’t be pissing your time away working on briefs for some cockamamie ad contest. But if you do, at least keep it quiet.

That’s the message of this amusing video by agency Zulu Alpha Kilo encouraging entries to Canada’s National Advertising Challenge—a contest that challenges creatives to dream up the most unconventional solutions for Canadian marketers. Sounds like fun? Sure, but you’d better not let certain colleagues know you plan to enter.

The winning teams get a trip to Cannes in June. The NAC got 200 entries last year, but hopes to double that this year. The briefs go live March 2, with a deadline of March 30.

“We have big aspirations for the NAC, but we were facing a serious comprehension issues within the creative community,” says Ellie Metrick, marketing and communications manager at NAC. “This year’s online video goes a long way in explaining that we offer creatives an opportunity to do original work in exchange for a chance to go to Cannes.”

Agency: Zulu Alpha Kilo
Client (Company): National Advertising Challenge
Creative Director: Zak Mroueh
Art Director: Ari Elkouby
Copywriter: George Ault
Agency Producer: Tara Handley
Production House: Someplace Nice
Director: Pete Henderson
Account Team: Alexandra Potter
Client: Ellie Metrick
Production House Producer: Robbie McNamara
Video Post Facility / Editing Company: Rooster
Editor: Chris Parkins
Online/Transfer: Fort York
Flame Artist: Lauren Rempel
Audio Post Facility/Music House: Zulu Alpha Kilo
Audio Director: Stephen Stepanic
Engineer: Stephen Stepanic

Zulu Alpha Kilo Vets Launch New Agency

the garden

Industry veteran Shane Ogilvie, who spent the last three years as ECD at Toronto’s Zulu Alpha Kilo, has left that shop to co-found his own business with former Zulu Executive Planning Director Shari Walczak.

Their venture, The Garden North America, will function as a self-described “new breed of creative company.” What does that mean?

The key, it seems, is flexibility. The agency wants potential clients to know that it can do traditional advertising…but it can also do lots of other stuff too.

As the release puts it, “Anything can grow in a garden.” From Ogilvie himself:

“Our output will be different for every company because it will be based on their individual needs…could be a brand repositioning or social strategy, or it could involve operational design or customer experience innovations. Because the process starts further upstream, the possibilities are endless.”

Rather than hire in-house teams to do that work, The Garden will outsource it:

“Ogilvie and Walczak say The Garden will employ a unique model wherein teams of experts will be custom built and brought in to address specific problems.”

Ogilvie writes from experience: after starting his career at Holmes and Lee (now Reason Partners), he spent more than six years as a senior copywriter and ACD at DDB Canada, working on Capital One, State Farm, Budweiser, Subaru, and various other accounts; Grey Canada later hired him as a creative director.

At Zulu, Ogilvie’s ECD credit appeared on recent campaigns created for Corona, Audi, and Coke Zero.

Walczak also brings two decades of agency experience to the new role: prior to joining Zulu in 2012 as executive strategy director, she was strategic planning director at fellow Toronto shop john st.; previous titles include VP/GM/senior brand strategist at Cossette and account-based roles at Leo Burnett’s Toronto office.

The Garden has not signed formal agreements with any clients at the moment, but its principals are “currently working with several companies who have shown interest in the new model,” so we should have updates soon.

60s Adman Gets a Job at Zulu Alpha Kilo; It Doesn’t Go Well

For the 2014 Strategy Agency of the Year Awards in Toronto, Zulu Alpha Kilo decided to take a look at how a sixties adman might fare in today’s agency world. Hint: Not so well.

The video opens with the adman, Dick, being told that he’s being let go due to his unacceptable behavior around the office. When he questions what exactly he did wrong, we’re treated to a montage of Dick’s antics, which include blowing cigarette smoke in the face of a pregnant coworker, exposing a testicle, questioning the need for agency partners, having sex with a prostitute on his desk and, of course, constantly drinking on the job. It’s a funny look at how much the agency climate has changed since the Mad Men era, with a slight twist ending, and well worth a look if you have a few minutes to spare.

Despite being fired, Dick somehow appeared at the awards show last night…


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1960s Adman Makes a Hilarious and Obscene Visit to a Modern Agency (NSFW)

We’ve already seen how Joan Harris (aka, Christina Hendricks) might adjust to life at a modern ad agency. Well, this guy is way more of a train wreck.

Canadian ad agency Zulu Alpha Kilo put together this crazy video for Wednesday’s Agency of the Year event in Toronto. It’s hilarious, if you don’t mind a little nudity, profanity and off-color humor.

It took some balls to make this. Well, one nasty, hairy, protruding ball.

Credits below.

Video is NSFW for various reasons, but watch it anyway.

Agency: Zulu Alpha Kilo
Creative Director: Zak Mroueh
Writer: Sean Atkinson
Art Director: Shawn James
Agency Producer: Tara Handley
Editor: Michael Headford
Accounts: Devina Hardatt
Director: Bruce McDonald
Production Company: Revolver Films
Producer: Luc Frappier/Rob Allan
Director of Photography: Johnny Cliff
Casting: Jigsaw Casting/Shasta Lutz
Transfer/Online: Alter Ego
Audio/Music: Pirate Toronto
Audio Director: Chris Tait

Corona Brings Glorious Sunshine to a Shaded Patio in Clever Outdoor Stunt

The stars really aligned for Corona—well, one did in particular—in this clever outdoor stunt from Toronto agency Zulu Alpha Kilo.

Check out the video below to see how the brand brought some extra hours of sunlight to some drinkers on a patio. It’s a great realization of the brand’s tagline, “Find your beach,” and surely has extra resonance in Canada, where summers are short enough.

Corona, of course, loves any marketing that involves celestial bodies—as seen in New York City last summer, when the brand made the waxing crescent moon look like a slice of lime resting in a Corona bottle on a billboard.

Zulu Alpha Kilo Feels Awkward Around Nestea

Nestea has huge cans.

That’s what we take from this latest campaign by Toronto agency Zulu Alpha Kilo, which chose to emphasize the size of said cans and the amount of precious cargo within by extending some of the most awkward possible moments for its teenage protagonists.

The agency, which most recently caught our attention with its brilliant “app to improve agency efficiency“, could keep going with this theme indefinitely.

The potential for embarrassing hilarity would be even greater if the client were, say, Four Loko. Unfortunately, that product as we once knew and not-quite-loved it is no more–and promoting it to its real-world target audience would have been illegal anyway.

Second spot and credits after the jump.


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Zulu Alpha Kilo Launches New App to Improve Agency Efficiency

Toronto-based Zulu Alpha Kilo has just launched a new global app designed to improve agency efficiency.

The app addresses a very important issue for a lot of agencies: creative directors can be hell to track down for meetings, reviews, or critical approvals. So Zulu Alpha Kilo designed “Find My CD,” which utilizes GPS tracking technology which allows agencies to keep an eye on their creative director’s whereabouts at all times. To accomplish this, the app utilizes proprietary chip technology “inserted just beneath the creative director’s skin” — which Zulu Alpha Kilo stresses is “a very safe, very technical procedure.” The chip then allows agencies to track their creative director’s every move, leading to a drastic increase in efficiency.

“Between client presentations, casting sessions and internal creative reviews, creative directors are hard to pin down,” said Mike Sutton, president, Zulu Alpha Kilo. “Now they’re just a pin on a map.” Stick around for credits after the jump. continued…

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Zulu Alpha Kilo Mangles History to Promote Interac e-Transfer

Zula Alpha Kilo created a new campaign for Interac, promoting their e-Transfer service with a comical website containing historical parodies of various time periods.

The website has three videos featuring Dr. Trapasso, “Doctor of Money Transferology, a man who has dedicated his life to studying money.” Trapasso takes the viewer on a tour of three historical time periods where his mangled historical accounts demonstrate the “perils of archaic money exchange” in attempts at humor that mostly fall flat. One of these, featured above, features Leonardo da Vinci’s failed attempts at getting reimbursed for a pizza he fronted for Michelangelo. The other two videos are in much the same goofy vein, with accounts of the first Olympic games and the westward expansion of Canada.

“People resist change,” exaplains Shari Walczak, Executive Planning Director at Zulu Alpha Kilo. “We know that consumers are not in love with cheques as a form of payment. However, we are creatures of habit and need to be reminded that there’s a better way to exchange money other than cheques or cash,” said Shari, completely ignoring the existence of debit transactions.

Zulu Alpha Kilo’s campaign also includes “video pre-rolls, standard and rich media banner ads, along with paid and organic social media support to tease audiences with the absurdity of these stories” and will run until the spring. The creative is supported with a national digital media campaign handled by Media Experts, as well as a French adaptation for the Quebec marketplace developed by TANK. Stick around for credits and “Let The Games Begin” after the jump.  continued…

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

How to Make Your Sadistic Advertising Boss Utterly Pathetic and Powerless

This business is full of wankers who rarely get their comeuppance. If one of them is your boss, you have very few options. You can quit via late-night viral dance video. Or, in Canada at least, you can turn him or her into an intern.

This month, for the third straight year, the country's National Advertising Benevolent Society (NABS) is holding its Vintage Intern Auction, an initiative from Toronto creative agency Zulu Alpha Kilo that lets bidders get "revenge" on any of 12 notable executives and thought leaders from the business—by making him or her an unpaid intern for a day. Bidding starts at $2,000 for each victim, and all proceeds go to help the 1,300 families supported by NABS, which provides assistance to people in the communications and related industries who are suffering illness, injury, unemployment or financial difficulties.

Zulu Alpha Kilo again created the ads for this year's event, and they comically focus on the revenge angle. "The campaign taps into the insight that you don't get to the top without ruffling a few feathers along the way. We were fortunate that all of this year's interns were great sports and could laugh at themselves a little," says Zak Mroueh, chief creative officer and CEO at Zulu Alpha Kilo.

Check out the work below, and scroll down to see which 12 Canadian ad leaders are for sale through the online auction. (Bidding ends Oct. 31.)

2013 advertising leaders up for auction:
Claude Carrier – President, DentsuBos
Mary Maddever – Vice President, Editorial Director, Brunico Publishing
Brent Choi – Chief Creative and Integration Officer, JWT
Lance Martin – Partner, Executive Creative Director, Union Creative
David Crichton – Partner, Creative Director, Grip Limited
Ian MacKellar – Chief Creative Officer, Ogilvy
Simon Jennings – President, Gesca 
Angus Tucker – Partner, Co-Creative Director, John Street
Mitch Joel – Author, President, Twist Image
Kenneth Wong – Distinguished Professor of Marketing, Queen's School of Business
Amber Mac – President, Co-founder, Konnekt; Co-host, App Central
Christina Yu – Executive Vice President, Creative Director, Red Urban

Client: NABS
Project: Vintage Intern Auction
Agency: Zulu Alpha Kilo
Chief Creative Officer: Zak Mroueh
Executive Creative Director: Ron Smrczek
Art Director: Grant Cleland
Writers: George Ault, Nick Asik, Japeth Kwan
Producers: Bette Minnot, Kari Macknight Dearborn, Ola Stodulska
Account: Nevena Djordjevic
Digital Strategy: Emma Brooks
Digital Producer: Ola Stodulska
Web Developer: Richard Thirumaran
Production Artists: Jamie Morren, Brandon Dyson
IT Director: Gary Stothers
Production Company: Partners Film
Executive Producer: Gigi Realini
Director: Neil Tardio
Producer: Sandy Kelly
Photography: Matt Barnes, Westside Studio
Producer: Tara O'Malley
Casting Director: Andrew Hayes, Powerhouse Casting
Editor: Daniel Reis, Panic & Bob
Producer: Taissa Callaghan
Audio Director: Chris Tait, Pirate
Web Development: Thinkingbox
Software Development: Michael Vay Lee, Tim Wienrich
Production: Chris Raedcher


No Canadá, leilão transforma chefes em estagiários

Quem nunca, na época do estágio ou no primeiro job, sofreu nas mãos de um chefe? Virou noites, abriu mão de fins de semana, feriados e foi até parar no hospital? Tudo bem que, para alguns, coisas deste tipo continuam acontecendo mesmo após anos de experiência, mas no Canadá, a agência Zulu Alpha Kilo dá uma chance para que profissionais se vinguem de seus chefes, transformando-os em estagiários graças ao NABS Vintage Intern Auction.

Em sua terceira edição, leilão coloca “à venda” 12 executivos e lideranças do marketing e publicidade do país, como Christina Yu, vice-presidente executiva e diretora criativa da Red Urban, Ian MacKellar, diretor criativo da OgilvyAngus Tucker, sócio e co-diretor criativo da John Street, entre outros. A lista completa pode ser conferida aqui.

O lance mínimo para se levar um dos profissionais é CAD$ 2 mil. Durante um dia, os participantes poderão atuar como estagiários, executando tarefas como criar uma estratégia, discursar, dar um seminário, limpar a cozinha, prestar consultoria, buscar o café e até liderar uma caminhada.

NABS, que significa National Advertising Benevolent Society, é uma entidade que ajuda profissionais da área de comunicação em questões relacionadas a doenças, acidentes, desemprego e dificuldades econômicas. Somente este ano, 1300 famílias estão sendo ajudadas. big1_0


Brainstorm9Post originalmente publicado no Brainstorm #9
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Ninguém nasce mau

Bebezinhos fofos e sorridentes sempre chamam a atenção, especialmente na publicidade. Se você fizer uma busca aqui pelo B9, vai perceber que a galera pira com eles. Não à toa. Bebês não são apenas fofos e sorridentes, eles também são o começo de tudo, o primeiro capítulo de suas próprias histórias. São seres humanos que ainda não xingam seus colegas de trabalho, não batem a porta na cara dos outros, não são rudes com seus vizinhos… Basicamente, o que mostra este filme da People for Good, do Canadá, que nos lembra: “Ninguém nasce mau.”

Isso tudo ao som de Keep on the Sunny Side – canção composta em 1899 que ficou bastante conhecida na versão da The Carter Family e que aqui ganhou uma simpática releitura do EggPlant Collective.

Criado pelas agências Zulu Alpha Kilo e Media Experts, o movimento People for Good incentiva as pessoas a serem gentis umas com as outras. Por mais clichê que isso possa parecer, ainda assim é uma ideia bem bacana, que só poderia vir dos canadenses – reconhecidos internacionalmente como um dos povos mais gentis do mundo.

No site, é possível encontrar algumas das ações já realizadas pela iniciativa, mas também há uma seção com sugestões de coisas legais que as pessoas podem fazer para as outras. Oferecer indicações a alguém, fazer o outro rir, retornar o carrinho do supermercado ao lugar certo… estas são apenas algumas coisas gentis e possíveis que todos podemos fazer.

Afinal, até Darth Vader já foi bonzinho um dia…


Brainstorm9Post originalmente publicado no Brainstorm #9
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