• Mar 27, 2017

by Federica Fugazzotto


How many of us, when it comes to copywriting and advertising agencies, think instantly of the offices of Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce in 1960s Manhattan? We can almost smell the cigarette smoke as we imagine Don creating revolutionary advertising between sips of Old Fashioned.

Although we know that the reality of today is very different, it is impossible to deny that Mad Men, in the field of advertising, has had a strong impact on the common imagination. And that's not all.

It is also making its mark right now at Heinz, a US firm that produces sauces, soups and canned beans.

If you’ve seen Mad Men, you may remember the season six episode in which Don Draper attends a meeting with the well-known company with a bold proposal: advertising a product without ever showing it. The product in question is ketchup, and the campaign includes the use of images of food usually eaten with the sauce - burgers, fries and steak - accompanied by the message Pass the Heinz. The very essence of the campaign is genius, playing on the fact that there is no need to show or name the product because it simply can’t be anything except ketchup. Unfortunately for Don, the company was unconvinced by such an innovative proposal, and eventually rejected it in favour of a safer campaign.




But the story did not end there, and it is true that, sometimes, reality is stranger than fiction. With an unexpected and shrewd move, a nod to fans of Mad Men in the very year of the tenth anniversary of the series, the company has decided to approve the campaign proposed by Don over fifty years ago. It will be the same in all respects, with the same images posted on the streets of New York and published in newspapers. The credits will go to advertising agency David, who will produce the campaign, but also to Don and his firm, Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce and Matthew Weiner, series creator and showrunner.

Fonte: account Twitter di Heinz Ketchup


In an interview with AdWeek, David’s Creative Director Anselmo Romas commented:  “It took us 50 years to get this approved. So, never give up. Never settle. Sometimes it takes a while to prove an idea you’re passionate about. Sometimes it takes fictional characters working together with real characters. But don’t give up. Eventually, if you really believe in your idea, you’ll get it approved.”

And he’s certainly not wrong!


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Federica Fugazzotto - Editorial translator from English into Italian and full-time nerd. She loves stories more than anything else on Earth but does not mind a glass of good red wine.


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"A different language is a different vision of life."   Federico Fellini

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