3 tactics from Ryan Reynolds for your next video production

Branding, advertising, video production
Jan 24, 2019
Brand Marketing

Take a look at this ad for Aviation Gin, starring the brand’s owner, Ryan Reynolds. There are some lessons in it for every brand wanting to create a winning ad or video for their business.


Pretty great, huh?

Whether you’re a gin drinker or not, it leaves you feeling predisposed to like Aviation Gin as a brand. So, how does this video achieve that?

It’s not about Ryan Reynolds, but it’s all about Ryan Reynolds

OK, so not every brand is owned by a celebrity. Not every brand has a Ryan Reynolds at their disposal, or the budget to afford a Hollywood star. But it’s not actually Ryan Reynolds’s “celebrity” that sells this ad.

What sells this ad is the fact that the Ryan Reynolds we see in this ad is an authentic version of the person we all understand Ryan Reynolds to be.

We know Reynolds is a funny guy. He’s irreverent. He’s sort of Deadpool, but without the superpowers. This ad plays into that characterisation. As a result, it feels real. It has a ring of authenticity about it.

Branding, advertising

It doesn’t matter who your owner, chief executive or spokesperson is, for your marketing message to get across to your audience effectively, the person delivering the message has to be authentic.

It’s not about the format, but it’s all about the format

There are lots of archetypical ways to create an ad or video that delivers a brand message.

You’ll recognise the archetypes from TV — ads that play on dreams; use heroes, visionaries, or rulers; feature the everyman; highlight nurturing; laud creators; or use explorers, rebels, lovers, jesters, or teachers to tell a brand story. (You can read more about the archetypes here.)

The Aviation Gin ad is of a kind we’ve all seen a million times before — beautifully filmed, highly romanticised “creation” stories meant to spark an emotional connection to a brand. They’re the kind of ads that often run during the Super Bowl. They’re basically Johnny Walker’s entire advertising repertoire.

Except the Aviation Gin ad subverts this completely by spoofing the whole genre.

The result is we are completely engaged by the ad. We can’t look away; we have to stick with it until the end. We’re compelled to watch on, to hear the next joke, to witness the next trope slain.

Perhaps using humour isn’t right for your brand. It doesn’t matter. The lesson here is to disrupt! Don’t just give your audience what they expect to see.

branding, advertising, video production

It’s not about the brand message, but it’s all about the brand message

Who is the target market for this ad? What does this ad say about them? And what is it about this ad that will have them ordering Aviation Gin next time they’re in a bar, or picking a bottle off the shelf next time they’re in a liquor store?

We buy products for lots of reasons. Necessity, convenience, scarcity, value, brand recognition, fads, peer pressure, guilt, or even, sometimes, because we have no other choice. You can read more about the reasons we buy things, here.)

Sometimes we buy things because we like what the act of buying them or having them says about us. In other words, we buy things because clever marketers and clever brands have told us owning a product says this or that about who we are.

If you buy Aviation Gin, the message you’re sending is that you have a sense of humour and you’re probably good fun to be around. That’s not a bad message to send when you’re sitting at a bar hoping to make friends or find a mate. And, therefore, it’s not a bad niche for an alcohol brand to target in its messaging.

No matter what your product is, or your company does, make sure your messaging really connects with your target audience. Your audience should understand, innately, what it is that choosing your brand over your competitors’ brand says about them as a person.

Need help creating a fantastic video to engage your audience but don’t have Ryan Reynolds’s budget? Get in touch with Lush — The Content Agency. Our experienced video production team in Perth, Western Australia, can help.