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Here's the TL;DR version. Make fewer ad-shaped objects. Tell more true stories.

Content or advertising, above or below the line, campaign or always-on, what matters in social is that it feels like a real story. Telling stories that put your audience first builds a brand love that will outlast brand fame.  True stories can help brands  be coolsound smart and do goodWhich is why brands that tell more true stories more frequently land in culture and live their purpose But helping brands tell more true stories is not just our approach to purpose-driven marketing – it's our own purpose Here's a true story in 3 chapters about how we got here and why it works...

1

It all starts with STORIES.

So, here’s a true story. Long ago, our agency crafted content at the BBC. These days, Redwood is part of BBDO – the world’s most awarded creative network. Put both halves of our true story together and you’ve got Redwood DNA: BBCBBDO. A unique combination of newsroom agility and agency creativity that helps brands tell more true stories. Why stories? Because the same consumers that avoid ads will seek out stories that explain or entertain. Which means that brands that focus on storytelling at least as much as selling flourish in social spaces.

 

Besides,

everything starts

with stories 

Back in the day, the BBC brands we helped build included Top Gear. Now, the global clients we work with include Ferrari. The names change, the channels multiply, but the core stories? The stories remain the same. Which is why telling true stories is more than our approach – it’s our purpose.

Google

2

Give them MORE

Here's an unsurprising truth

– these days, brands need more. More stories, more speed, more agility. Always-on? Maybe not. But when it comes to showing up in the right way in the right places - at all the right times - then you need to be always-there. To tell more stories with less fuss we build brand newsrooms with passion at the core. Our Mazda team are pure petrolheads. Our Virgin Media team rove red carpets like proper entertainment reporters. As well as passion, real newsrooms need real expertise. All our lead creatives have deep digital media experience. And we let them lead. Creative leadership is how we reduce friction and increase output. And it’s not just fleets we can make on the fly. Our production arm Redwood Studios adds the filmmaking muscle you need to make big ideas happen fast. Like Dear Local – Google’s largest brand campaign of 2020 – developed, shot and edited in-house. 120 social stories and two TVCs on-air just 11 weeks after taking the brief. Now that’s true agility.

Youtube meet the doers

3

Ask yourself, can it be MORE TRUE?

Here’s another true story. A few years ago, our sister agency AMV asked us to support their campaign for YouTube. The brief: prove that YouTube’s highly engaged audience was “More Than Just Viewers”. Our first thought: could we find real people who had used the video platform to actually change their entire life. People like Lex Mayhem (above), a pro wrestler who taught herself wrestling by watching clips on YouTube. And that’s how it is at Redwood. We tell all our teams “think like a journalist, act like a creative”. Where other agencies might write a script and think, “Who should we cast?” Our impulse is always, “Who can we find?”. Influencers or experts. Celebrities or customers. We like to travel down creative roads that provide an opportunity to meet real people.

We like to travel down creative roads that provide an opportunity to meet real people.

Like when housing developer L&Q asked us to craft a campaign targeting real locals in four London boroughs. The easy out is to script a location shoot. But it feels more true when you trust semi-documentary techniques to capture London life as locals actually live it. More fun to shoot on the run too. By finding creative ways to make advertising stories feel real, even when that feels hard, we help brands find the balance between disrupting social feeds and respecting social spaces. And that authentic approach is more important now than ever. Because this is the more true truth: post-Covid, connected consumers will expect even more authenticity. However open and honest you think you are today our more engaged culture will demand brands dig deeper and go further. You want full transparency? The future belongs to brands that walk the walk every day on social and not just talk the talk every campaign cycle. And if any of that sounds hard, just remember these four words: tell more true stories.

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