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TikTok Don't Make Ads. Make TikToks Advertising

Quiet Storm's Trevor Robinson recreates his Haribo ad for The Drum and TikTok challenge

By Olivia Atkins, Writer

July 13, 2020 | 6 min read

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From the Toosie Slide and handwashing challenges to BLM protests and Pride, these are just some of the reasons why TikTok has dominated the headlines and won the public’s heart in 2020. The Drum, in partnership with TikTok, is challenging advertising creatives to recreate their favourite ads from the past on the platform, using the powerful in-app tools.

don't make ads

The Drum and TikTok's new partnership sets live briefs to the industry each week directly from the TikTok channel @dontmakeads

The ‘Don’t make ads, make TikToks’ campaign, is TikTok’s invitation to the industry to unleash its creative side and create advertising that gets brands noticed by the platform’s users.

Making TikTok videos is the best way for brands to connect with TikTok’s audience. The challenge allows brands to show up and play on the app, like other members of the community. TikTok’s advice to creatives is to get experimental and try out something new, without fear of being judged.

The partnership sets live briefs to the industry each Monday directly from the TikTok channel @dontmakeads and The Drum channel @thedrum_ and will see top industry creatives interpreting iconic ads on TikTok. For example, Haribo’s spot with adults miming the voices of children and the famous Reebok campaign with a metal soundtrack with a man being chased through the streets by an enormous hairy belly.

The initiative will show the industry just how easy and fun it is to create TikTok videos, and prove that as per TikTok’s ethos, everyone can be a creator, and that anyone can get discovered on the platform.

Creative luminaries have already been briefed with the challenge and over the coming weeks, their take on the initiative will be unveiled.

Trevor Robinson, Quiet Storm’s creative director and founder kicks off the challenge this week by recreating his iconic Haribo ad, Kids’ Voices. His version of the ad is live now so fellow creatives can take inspiration from his interpretation of the ad that he’s famously remembered for. Robinson has set his challenge to the industry to reimagine the ad better than he has and future ECDs will then nominate other ECDs to take part in the challenge – you have been warned, no one is safe!


##dontmakeads ##maketiktoks ##thedrum @dontmakeads

♬ original sound - thedrum_

Creatives, what are you waiting for?

Follow @dontmakeads on TikTok, to view the full brief from Trevor.

All entrants will have a week to get their videos in, which should be submitted using the #dontmakeads hashtag. Submissions will then be judged in a live chat between the ECD of the week and TikTok’s head of creative lab, Neil Boorman. The best creations will be reposted and made available under TikTok’s @dontmakeads TikTok account and The Drums account @thedrum_.


##dontmakeads ##maketiktoks ##thedrum @dontmakeads

♬ original sound - thedrum_

“What makes TikTok unique is its creative environment and the community,” says The Drum’s consulting editor, Sonoo Singh. “This fun partnership with TikTok and the creatives reimagining some of the most well-known and loved ads of our time will allow us to explore the in-app tools that include voiceovers, transitions and effects."

As the challenge progresses, participating ECDs will also share their inspirations and thought processes behind their TikTok entries of their favourite ads, shedding a little insight around how they created their finished film and sharing the process behind each. All participating ECDs will continue the chain by nominating other creatives to get involved and create their own interpretations of their favourite ad.

“TikTok is a platform is designed to inspire – with authentic, creative content that could only be on TikTok” said Neil Boorman, head of Creative Lab, Europe at TikTok. “For brands, this opens an entirely new window of opportunity to create content that speaks to people, to invite the community to join in the conversation, Make TikToks. We've an impressive roster of creatives getting involved already, I can't wait to see how the industry runs at this challenge.”

TikTok is a space for users to actively create culture, rather than passively consume it. The ‘Don’t make ads, make TikToks’ challenge urges creatives to get creative on the app – questioning whether they can be as resourceful and imaginative as their fellow TikTokers. Stay tuned each Monday to find the new briefs for creatives to take on via the @dontmakeads TikTok account.

TikTok Don't Make Ads. Make TikToks Advertising

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