Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Benetton goes back to advertising actual clothes

Via The Drum

Yeah, that's right. After years of pushing the boundaries of shock advertising, culminating with 2011's extremely popular/controversial Unhate campaign, Benetton suddenly remembered what it is that they sell: Not just attitude, but the means to express it.

From the Press Release:

The future of United Colors of Benetton is ever more colourful. Newly interpreted, color returns to the forefront in an iconic Spring/Summer 2013 fashion campaign which uses the original stories of a cosmopolitan team of ambassadors to illustrate United Colors of Benetton's passion, innovation and openness to the world, looking to the future and embracing the challenges of tomorrow.  
This campaign breaks new ground for the Benetton Group brand. Starting this season and using an ever changing set of ambassadors, it rolls out a totally new format based – in the words of Chairman Alessandro Benetton – on “the iconic value of color – a founding value for United Colors of Benetton and once again at the centre of our aesthetics and communications – to give a powerful assertion of the identity and excellence of this brand, which holds diversity as a value, and the unity of differences as a wealth to be treasured.” 
The 2013 campaign features Sudanese humanitarian activist Alek Wek (above), Tunisian model Hanaa Ben Abdesslem, British actress/model/granddaughter-of-Charlie-Chaplin Kiera Chaplin, Californian mode Charlotte Free, British actor and model Dudley O’Shaughnessy, differently-abled German model Mario Galla, Uruguayan chef Matias Perdomo, trans-sexual Brazilian model Lea T, , and American model Elettra Wiedemann.

Charlotte Free, via Vogue Italia

Dudley O’Shaughnessy, via Vogue Italia

Hanaa Ben Abdesslem, via Vogue Italia

Kiera Chaplin, via Vogue Italia

Lea T, via Vogue Italia
Mario Galla, Via Vogue Italia

Elettra Wiedemann, via Vogue Italia

Matias Perdomo, via Vogue Italia

Not exactly all the "colours" of the world represented here (and nobody is fat or old) but Benetton claims they chose their models more based on who they are than where they came from. It's a good approach, going back-to-basics, while still clearly positioning Benetton as a brand for global diversity and individual expression. It may not win them a lot of hardware at Cannes, but by showing the product maybe... just maybe...  they'll actually sell more of it.

The campaign was developed under the creative direction of Fabrica (in-house) in cooperation with Macs Iotti.

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