Work that earned top prize in the global Rebrand 100 competition, awarded for the combination of creative and strategy, and helped turn around a brand that turned rock stars into raving fans.
After 30 years, a half-dozen leaders and two or three owners, the venerable rock ’n’ roll brand had become fundamentally rudderless. The agency’s marching orders, as delivered by the new ceo and cmo: rebuild the rudder. Hence, the “Word” book, which clarified the spirit of the brand, as well as day-to-day particulars, and relaunched Hard Rock.
When the project began, there was a dizzying proliferation of logos — including a Halloween pumpkin variant — that added to the image of a brand adrift. But even the permanent logos had never been refined since their 1971 invention. And there was no mark that represented the company itself – the idea, really — separate from a cafe, hotel or casino property.
As the brand expanded to 50+ countries, a big problem became quickly communicating the concept of a rock ’n’ roll restaurant in dozens of languages. The solution was the universal symbology of rock ’n’ roll itself. The fork can be found on bus shelters, chef’s jackets, collectible pins, outdoor boards and every other conceivable place around the globe.
The DC team attacked the marketing issues — from menu design to commercials to website — while the client’s team attacked product issues, dramatically upgrading the ingredients and preparation of the food. But past experience had soured some customers. How to show the newly fresh and freshly made menu items without surrendering the brand’s reinvigorated rock edge?
With 70,000 wildly diverse, museum-quality objects, the memorabilia collection is all real and second to none. But in the wake of imitators, consumers came to believe it was full of replicas. As the foundation of the brand’s authenticity, it was imperative to give the audience context for the collection and a readily accessible closeup. This was the basis of a multiplatform digital initiative that let the world interact with the memorabilia, via the web and via digital kiosks, walls and tables at every location.
Over eight years, the advertising has evolved. This See the Show campaign sought to capture the fresh energy that now ensured that every revamped cafe or hotel was much more than just a place to eat or sleep, that it was a complete experience, a show — whether anyone’s on a stage or not.
“DC helped return Hard Rock to its authentic rock ‘n’ roll roots. And not just in the US, but around the globe.”Sean Dee, Hard Rock International CMO
Work + News
Nicotine = Brain Poison = Clio
Our work for CTCP has awakened parents to the teen vaping epidemic and won a slew of awards in the process (not nearly as important, but nice). The latest is that most venerable of ad accolades: the Clio.
SGX NYC | #hairgoals
SGX NYC wanted to increase awareness around winning two Allure Best of Beauty Awards and reinforce the brand’s positioning with cost-conscious consumers looking for premium products. We hit the bullseye with three well-known #hairgoals influencers.
Citi | “Citigrammers”
Citi wanted to increase awareness and favorability on social media, particularly within the music and dining categories. We assembled a team of influential visual artists to create the sort of shareable content the brand couldn't.
Million-dollar talent from Upwork
To support COVID-19 projects, Upwork is donating a million dollars of time from their network of independent professionals. And who better to tell us about it than the pros themselves?
e.l.f. Cosmetics | Coachella
e.l.f. wanted to launch Beauty Shield, an all-new skincare line powered with antioxidants and SPF to help protect your skin against environmental aggressors. DCLA provided the perfect testing ground.
Cotteleer in Campaign US
DC’s chief experience officer speaks with Campaign about the virtual world and how COVID-19 has actually brought DC’s SF and LA offices closer.
Empowering the pandemic parent
Amy, along with our CEO Andy, talking to MediaPost about the agency’s support plan for working parents suddenly at home with kids.
Loyalty or discount program advertising often dwells in the downscale world of the coupon clipper — a turnoff to savvier online shoppers. Our strategy was to present Rakuten as every bit as premium as the brands it offered rebates on.
While the competition focused on transaction and technology, Grubhub really understood the near magical moment that occurs when the “food’s here.”
California Tobacco Control Program | Social Smoking
Daily smoking has been on the decline for decades and yet casual smoking is actually on the rise. How do we get at-risk groups to see social smoking for what it is: plain old dangerous, unhealthy smoking.
Cotteleer talks COVID-19 in Adweek
As we seek to chart our way through the uncharted, DC’s Amy Cotteleer shares her thoughts on brands’ best course of action during the pandemic.
Another sweet new client
If you missed it in Adweek and Ad Age, DC went to the Black Forest and hit the gummy bear motherlode.