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Let's explore

Selwyn Learner and Ed Bones take us on a journey of discovery

A compass lying on a mapExploration leads to discovery. The more you explore; the more you discover. Tenacious exploration can bring you to the wellspring of a great idea, and from there you can do anything. Once there though, you should push further. Perhaps you'll discover nothing better, but that in itself is part of the process.

Well, that's our view. It's also our view that work in the pharma press is often ruinously compromised by research, global guidelines and a dozen other et ceteras. And we're not going to be critical of work that even the creators may dislike. So we headed straight to the most recent Directory of Advertising Agencies – the assumption being, if it's showcased in those pages, it ought to be good enough for a meaningful discussion here.

LOCOID - for eczema 



We'd like to discover what this looks like with PI. We'd like to discover exactly what Locoid does. (OK, we know, but they don't know we know.) We'd like to discover who had the courage to change the yellow and black branding. We'd like to have spotted this in the press. We love it. We could ask if they pushed it on, perhaps trying kittens made of lions, before coming back to this? Who knows? We're just excited to have discovered this work.

Niagara Falls Discovery: Niagara Falls; stand back and admire the view


SMA NUTRITION - for infant and toddler nutrition

Onwards to SMA nutrition. Nourishing potential. Great line, great idea. We need go no further to know what SMA nutrition means to any baby. We like white on white, we like the sympathetic type. But are there still possibilities up ahead? We'd like to know if there are other ways to persuade us visually of its nourishing potential. Is it an execution that's been discovered before?

SMA Nutrition 

Discovery: the Discovery Channel; interesting but you feel it may be a repeat


CRESTOR - for cholesterol lowering


Our search uncovered no ad more succinct and confident than this for Crestor. We're asked if cholesterol targets are hard to hit, and the presence of the brand name says everything else. Or does it? Our appetite is whet, but is there more? We'd like to discover something else about this ad; namely that if the question about targets isn't asked, exactly what has Crestor got to say for itself?

  Meat and garnish Discovery: nouvelle cuisine; well presented but the portions are too small


ALLERGAN - corporate

Not our natural hunting ground, puns. The phrase 'See urology differently' doesn't offer up shivers of anticipation. But look: a visual we ought to have seen many times before – but haven't. Well, we haven't, anyway. We'd like to have discovered a big idea, but it's okay, we stumbled upon a neat visual that made us smirk. And a minor question over grammar.


Discovery: a pound down the back of the sofa; nice but you wish it was a fiver



Gout Guidelines Awareness Standing high on an escarpment we looked out for one more creative find. Glancing down to our feet we saw it... gout. We'd like to uncover the source of this idea. Though it's visually striking, there's a sort of bullet-pointy subhead thingy and a pretty pedestrian headline. But nonetheless you stop. You stop and look. And whatever else anyone may want, if people don't stop and look, they can't discover what the communication is trying to say, which really is the point of it all.
 Meaning of life  


Discovery: the meaning of life; it ought to be fantastic, but it's not as good as The Life of Brian


Selwyn Learner and Ed BonesThe Authors
Selwyn Learner (left) and Ed Bones (right) are co-founders and creative directors of Learner Adams Bones

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Ad Lib is a creative critique of healthcare ads and does not take into account the marketing objectives behind the campaigns reviewed.


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3rd March 2010


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