McCann CCO Lol Thomson: best ads of 2016

The stars aligned when Dougal Wilson took on the job for C4. His extravaganza for the Paralympics has to be the best thing we’ve seen for a long time; that with the behind the scenes films was quite an undertaking. A huge investment from the C4 team and production company that shows when you have something special you go all in.

The Brexit campaign was pretty successful, and the individual that came up with the term ‘Brexit.’ Dislike that person who came up with the term if you like, but you have to admire the neologism. Alongside bot-fuelled misinformation that infected our Twitter and social sphere on a massive scale, it caught the populist vote & even though in the weeks before the decisive vote the Beeb defaulted to ‘vote leave,’ the ear worm had done its job. The ASA would have had a field day had they been allowed near the campaign – under the party political broadcast system they aren’t classified as ads. Baffling. Brexit, Brexit, Brexit.


Bisto Spare Chair Sunday – a smart little tie up with Contact the Elderly that routed back to the products truth – gravy brings people together. With this example, offer up a spare chair and invite a local old person round for Sunday lunch – might not have been the biggest campaign or scooped the most awards but jeez if all brands did things half as good the world could be a bit better.

3Laurence (Lol) Thomson is CCO and co-president of McCann London.

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About Stephen Foster

Stephen is a former editor of Marketing Week and London Evening Standard advertising columnist. He wrote City Republic for Brand Republic and is a partner in communications consultancy The Editorial Partnership.