The things we have been up to
We hear that some people have been using the lockdown to develop new skills and reinvent themselves. Unfortunately, none of us have yet mastered Jujutsu, learned to speak Icelandic or have had a spiritual awakening (unless epiphanies that follow two bottles of wine count). Like most of the world, we have been making up the rules as we go along; improvising, stumbling, ranting, philosophising, laughing, creating. Mostly creating. Here’s some of the stuff that we have been trying out these days.
We go on trips
During our creative department catch-ups, people take turns to create Zoom backgrounds based on their favourite places for the whole team. Our ECD transported us to Hackney in London, our producer took us to the beaches in Western Australia and one of our art directors led us to a haunted fort in Old Delhi that – in the art director’s words – is frequented by djinns who are attracted to people who smell good and have long hair.
We make short films
We ran a short film contest for the whole agency. One of the entries featured a love affair between two houseplants (spoiler alert: one of the plants gets pregnant) and another one starred a fully-grown designer who went on a shooting spree inside his house with a large purple toy gun. It took a pandemic for us to realise a profound truth: we have been hiring a lot of weird people.
We write letters
Like every other agency in the known universe, we went into an unprecedented letter-writing spree on behalf of our clients. We began these missives by reminding the customers that there is a pandemic going on (in case they had been hibernating inside a giant oak tree) and then reassured them that their brands will always be there for them.
We play games
Every Wednesday afternoon, people take turns to host a Netflix party. We marveled at what some people find funny and discovered that Korean soap operas are a big deal. On Friday evenings, there is an all-agency Zoom party. The last one featured an intensely-fought movie quiz that went to the tie-breaker and was won – sneakily, according to the copywriters who were beaten - by a mild-mannered account manager who turned out to have nerves of steel.
We make games. Okay, we made one game
For World Pilots’ Day, we made a game for our client IndiGo – an Instagram filter that got a rather decent number of organic views, even if we say so ourselves.
We cut our hair
Here’s a generalisation after an analysis of data from watching our people on Zoom calls: Strategic Planners are the best when it comes to DIY haircuts.
We participate in surveys
We created a survey and asked ourselves deep, meaningful questions about living and working through a pandemic. In reply to whether it is easy or difficult to work from home, over 80 per cnt of the respondents said that they found it easy. It made us wonder: Hey, maybe we are made for this life after all.