Scrapped ads lampooning Alex Salmond and SNP Scottish independence campaign unearthed

Adverts lampooning former Scottish first minister Alex Salmond, created during the Scottish Independence Referendum of 2014 and pitched as part of the Better Together campaign, have been obtained by The Drum.

The three unused adverts, which each parody Salmond and his ultimately failed bid to persuade the Scottish people to vote for independence from Britain, have been obtained by The Drum from a source close to the anti-independence campaign.

One of the poster adverts features Salmond in a presentational pose, alongside the copy; 'It'll be alright on the night' in an attempt to position his campaign as being ramshackle, another pictured an out of focus Salmond behind a close up of a hand with its fingers crossed and the statement 'the National Lottery' while the third referenced the number of businesses leaders who promised to leave the country if independence was granted, resembling the logo for I'm a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here, only instead read; 'I'm a Businessman, Get me Out of Here'.

It is understood that the three were proposed to the marketing team by creatives working for the campaign at the time but never used as they were deemed too offensive and it is understood the campaign thought they might generate sympathy for Salmond.

Giles Moffatt, managing director of Home Agency in London who was part of the Better Together advertising team confirmed that he had seen the ads before.

“From memory, these were shown in focus groups and got a wry smile, as a lot of people felt Salmond was ‘busking it’. It will be interesting to see in this EU debate whether any of the Stay or Leave groups can tap into the public psyche," Moffatt commented.

In the end the Scottish Independence referendum, which took place in September 2014, saw Better Together win despite a closely run and vicious race in the build up to the vote.

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Stephen Lepitak

Stephen Lepitak is editor of The Drum, with responsibility for overseeing the day-to-day running of the content produced for the various platforms run by the publication. Over the years he has interviewed agency network bosses such as Sir Martin Sorrell, Maurice Lévy and Arthur Sadoun, as well as Cindy Gallop, Kim Kardashian, film directors James Cameron, Spike Jonze, Richard Curtis and Lord David Puttnam. With a keen interest in media and breaking news, Lepitak has been with The Drum since 2005 and is based across its UK, US and Asia operations.

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