Billboards are easily the best way to be seen if you’re a hopeful politician. A good billboard and marketing plan can be the difference between visibility and invisibilty. But a bad billboard can undo a whole lot of the gains a month or two of baby kissing and businessman brown-nosing offers.
Last election I invited a team of Auckland experts to run a critical eye over the billboards of Palmy's council hopefuls. I couldn't afford them this year, but got in a similar group of Whanganui professionals for their views. They bought their own alcohol and a wealth of ignorance about Palmy's political scene...and the results were...interesting. Here's what they had to say about Elizabeth Paine's handiwork:
We weren't going to review billboards that my Auckland team had already reviewed in the last election, so Elizabeth Paine's fiscally responsible re-run wasn't in the running for our attention...until she hired one of that very same team to develop a sticker for her. Jeremiah Bottomley-Feltch of Auckland advertising company, Groper, Groper and Feltch, doesn't come cheap - but his advice to possible Palmy Political Powerhouse Paine was genius:
“Put a catchy tagline on your sticker! It worked for *Billy Meehan!”
But before we take our analysis any further...lets go back to our 2013 election review:
"Although Paine’s photo is good, we feel that she has wasted the MASSIVE branding possibilities that her name gives her. Imagine how effective “NO PAINE, NO GAINE” would have been for an election slogan."
Elizabeth - your invoice for creative royalties is in the mail. Jeremiah - you bastard - I paid for your flight down here AND put you up in Shadzz Motel for a week and you rip me off like this! Going to a potential client behind my back! A******E!
Morals aside, there are some important signals in this billboard that Palmerston North's notoriously hard-to-impress voters will likely pick up.
Recycling: Paine could've turfed the old ones and gone with something touchy-feely from Groper, Groper and Feltch...but she did the right thing and re-used her old billboards. You could say that she up-cycled them. Palmy is the Up-Cycling capital of New Zealand - look at the great upcycling job the council is doing on Broadway. That plastic grass and those wooden planters are really lovely and will likely force the closure of the Plaza as thousands of shoppers flock back to Palmy’s TRUE business hub.
Marketing Nouse: Liz knew she had to do something to raise her profile and a tagline is ALWAYS a good idea. It gives the politically naive something to remember when they’re perusing the city’s long list of unmemorable candidates. Palmerston North, the world’s least popular city according to our Whanganui team, needs marketing nouse.
Sexy: Never underestimate the inspiration that the thought of a bit of S&M might bring to the privacy of the voting booth…”No Paine...no...yes...yes...Yeaaasss!”
Our designers gave this billboard 8 out of 10 and will be sending Cr Paine their business cards in preparation for the next campaign sticker.
NEXT UP: Hmmm...
But seriously: Signage is expensive - when you're considering designing one, leave room for a sticker - you never know what you might want to say later. And a tag line? The right one will take you a long way. Just Do It.
See also: Karen Naylor + Rachel Bowen
* Vote Meehan Again
In the days of rubies, surgical knives and hot wax, the Bromide Room was where a designer could go to breath some toxic air, get away from the boss, and talk shit with someone from the production department. It's been a long time since then...but hopefully the shit I talk here is a fitting tribute to the days when the only thing that I really knew about design was that it was the only thing I
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