Creativity Agency Culture

Colenso BBDO New Zealand issues clients restraining orders

By Amit Bapna | Editor-at-large

December 20, 2021 | 3 min read

New Zealand creative agency Colenso BBDO is so serious about giving its employees the much-needed break after an exhausting year for advertisers and marketers that it has issued clients a 21-day restraining order for the entire Christmas break.

To make the message sweeter, however, the order has been designed into the label of a bottle of wine. Each bottle was packaged in a manila box and ‘served’ to clients in person.

The restraining order has been phrased smartly to remind the clients to ‘maintain a distance of at least two meters from the premise and employees.

Colenso BBDO's creative gift for its clients this festive season

Colenso BBDO's creative gift for its clients this festive season

Penalties for a breach have been clearly outlined as well, such as a 20% reduction in logo size and a mandatory shoot somewhere in South America. Other tough measures include:

  • Briefs received after 12pm on a Friday ‘will be lit on fire’.

  • The usual lavish agency catering will be reduced to fruit platters containing only ‘sliced banana and withered grapes’.

  • In meetings, clients will ‘relinquish their right to laugh when a creative director describes his/her/their intended “vision”’.

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  • Marketers tempted to send Colenso an urgent brief over the break risk being forced to ‘agree to run the 90-second version of any TV ad, despite specifically declaring at least five times you had no use for a 90‘.

Behind the campaign

  • Speaking with The Drum about the fun campaign, Simon Vicars, chief creative officer of Colenso BBDO, said: “It has been a tough year for the whole industry, and we all needed a laugh. Being a creative company, we realized that shouldn’t just be sending our clients stock standard hampers.” Thus, a break-led gift was conceptualized.

  • We understand that our clients need a break from ad people just as much as we need a break from urgent new briefs, he adds. “Weirdly, after issuing them with restraining orders, they love us even more.”

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