creative impulse

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The Independent Online
H as Mars really dropped the "A Mars a day helps you work, rest and play" slogan, after 38 years? True, it does not feature in a new 40- second TV ad, in which an elderly American Indian struggles to the top of a mountain with his son and tells him that "it is a good day to die". As the old man is revived by a Mars bar that has fallen out of his son's pocket, the voiceover says: "There is nothing like the great taste of Mars - it's the taste for life."

The client: Mars Confectionery

Rachel Bradley, brand manager, Mars

In any Mars communication, a lot of things need to be balanced. The brand is 65 years old this year, and has always represented energy, food and nourishment, and so there is a need to reflect the bar's heritage and unique role in British life. But we need to maintain contemporary relevance - the scenarios in which we've placed the bar have changed over time - while being consistent with the course we've come through. We also need an ad to be entertaining, and to appeal to a broad consumer profile. But we haven't dropped the "work, rest and play" slogan; we're just not using it in this particular commercial. It will continue to appear on the packaging, and is being used in advertising for our special edition Mega Mars bar, to be launched next month.

The agency: DMB&B

Ann Galea, account director

The key thing with this brand is energy, which has always been its core value. Over the years that's been manifested in a number of ways, mainly embedded in physical activity; most recently, our ads have featured things like sky-diving and mountain biking. We're in a different camp to Cadbury, whose chocolate is presented more as an indulgence.

But we've also done executions focusing on emotional energy and uplift, and a decision was made with this new advertising to achieve a balance between physical and emotional energy. The new commercial is a pastiche of the Dustin Hoffman film Little Big Man, in which an Indian goes up a mountain to die but in the end decides it's not the right day to do so. We feel it's a nice illustration of revitalisation.

Mars is a big brand, so we wanted the film to reflect its stature. We also wanted to bring the brand into the Nineties. We've used a bit of humour, too, which we haven't had much of before. But this is not a massive departure: we are merely making the emphasis different from that of previous adsn

Scott Hughes