By Georgia Horrocks
A popular question in adland is, “What’s the advert that made you want to get into advertising?” I’m not really one for obsessively categorising my life and struggle with questions that begin with, “What’s your favourite” or, “what’s the moment when…”
Having said that, the Guinness Surfers ad is probably the ad that made me want to get into advertising. I thought the visuals were beautiful. The metaphor of the horses as the wave break could have been cliched, but somehow isn’t.
Mostly, it was the copy that I fell for: “He waits, that what he does. And I tell you what; Tick followed tock followed tick followed tock followed tick.”
So, imagine my shock when I discovered that the copy is actually an except from Moby Dick. I feel quite embarrassed that I didn’t realise it sooner, particularly as once you know it seems glaringly obvious. And although I should feel cheated, I don’t.
Actually, I’m reminded of another great writer that visited us: Tony Brignull. Particularly, his Parker ad that quotes more great British writers. “We sought to sell writing; not pens”, he explained, as his infamous line, ‘Rediscover The Lost Art of The Insult’, hovered behind him. When he pointed out the Lexicon of insults beneath the Logo – the finishing touch – the room collectively nodded.
Both ads successfully sold the products but they continuously sell writing to me as well. And remind me to keep reading, quote when I can, and – of course – that good things come to those that wait.