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Tiffany Montgomery
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The story behind the Lost ads

By Tiffany Montgomery
October 23, 2008 5:35 AM

I don't usually write about marketing campaigns, but the recent Lost advertisements - especially the one with McCain and Obama in board shorts and black socks - have caught my eye.


I asked Lost Marketing Director Ryan Divel to explain the thinking behind the ads.


What is the message you are trying to convey with the new ads? Can you point out the idea behind the political, the "SITA" and the one using the Hispanic models?


Ryan: Quit taking yourself so seriously. Have fun with what you're doing. We don't wear suits and ties so quit acting like it. The ideas behind everyone of the ads we've done is just to capture attention and crack a smile.


The political ad was just a play on the times at hand.


lostsitaThe SITA brand of the year (a play off the SIMA Image awards) was just self proclamation when we felt overlooked.


And the Team TJ (Tijuana) ad was something I had been thinking of forever and just decided to pull the trigger. That one basically started this roll and I had to put my job on the line.

 

What has the response been?


Ryan:I get stopped a few times a week by people giving me positive comments.

I don't think they (the ads) are that outrageous compared to beer commercials, but that just shows you how stale things in our industry have become.

I was cornered by the founder/president of a company we ran a mock ad of, turns out he complimented me on the whole deal and agreed how our industry needs to just lighten up a bit. He understood that imitation is the best form of flattery. It was refreshing to hear that kind of response from someone of his stature, especially when others can be such whiners.


Where are you running them?

 

lost team tj

Ryan:Mostly in the surf magazines. ING, ER, TWS. We have some viral e-mail media flowing through the web as well.


How does they help promote Lost's image?


Ryan:I hear constantly from people who know where Lost came from, that we needed to get back to this spot. I think for a while we were trying to be something we're not. When the ads became homogenized, the vibe of the brand reflected that. This applies to the events we've been involved with lately as well.

 

Why break away from the usual surf photo ad?


Ryan:I think most of us prefer going through the day with a little bit more laughter. I know I crack myself up. That's the main reason why we do these. If we can point out the absurd within this industry and even farther, an angels gets it's wings and the world becomes a happier place.


Here's a new ad that is a homage to the old Gotcha campaign:

 

lost gotcha


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