This year the IPA celebrates its Centenary and during the 100 years since it swung open its doors there’s been a mind-boggling amount of ads created. But we believe that it’s possible to catalogue all of these ideas into 10 simple themes, as our Chief Strategy Officer, Matt Willifer, explains in this series of blogs.

Themes covered so far have been ‘Name Fame’‘Expressing Personality’  and ‘Getting Emotional’. Next up, we’re onto ‘Remaining Rational’…



Ideas arising from a concrete fact about the brand

Originally stemming from the American “salesman” or “persuasion” model of advertising, these ideas have evolved into some of the most creative and memorable ads of the last 100 years.

Guinness being good for you. Bouncing balls to evoke the amazing colour of the Sony Bravia. The Van Damme splits showing the precision engineering of Volvo trucks. Or the delicious snapping, crackling and popping sound of a bowl of Kellogg’s Rice Krispies. The onomatopoeic ‘Snap! Crackle! Pop!’ line first appeared in a print ad in 1929, before going on to be immortalised as the famous Snap, Crackle and Pop cartoon characters, who made their TV debut 1955

‘The Ultimate Driving Machine’ idea for BMW is another great example of this rational stance. It’s a simple claim about the engineering quality of a car that helped justify a price premium for over 30 years. One of our favourite BMW executions was our 1970s ‘Shaken. Not Stirred’ print ad, which was also named by Campaign as one of the best British ads of the century.

Tune in tomorrow for theme #5, ‘Call to Action’…



Matt Willifer

About Matt Willifer

Chief Strategy Officer at WCRS and Partner at Engine.

Follow Matt Willifer