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Campaign For the Stay
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About TBWA\London

We have a very simple philosophy and way of working. It?s predicated on the belief that you can?t out-perform a market by adhering to its conventions. So quite simply, 'Disruption' is a process of identifying and challenging the conventions that we believe are constricting a brand or market.

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TBWA\London proves McVitie’s biscuits are the ‘True Originals’ with the launch of its new masterbrand platform

The launch campaign sees Sir Trevor McDonald back behind a news desk for the first time in 15 years, helping McVitie’s secure its place in British culture as the UK’s most iconic biscuit brand

TBWA\London is bringing ‘Britain’s biggest biscuit brand’1 back into the hearts and minds of the nation, with the launch of True Originals, a major new masterbrand platform for McVitie’s.

True Originals has been created to reaffirm the brand’s position as not only the sweet biscuit market leader, but purveyor of some of the UK’s most loved biccie brands - from Hob Nobs, to Rich Tea to Chocolate Digestives - each seen as an integral part of British culture. Based on McVitie’s strongest brand truth: that it is the original and the best - the platform allows the McVitie’s brand owner pladis and TBWA\London to convey its venerated status, deliciousness and love for the brand without becoming wallpaper; to be iconic and not just talk iconic; and to set it apart from the huge number of imitations and copycats out there. To create massive moments of engagement and impact.

The platform will become the basis for a range of activations, campaigns and cultural moments in the coming months and years as the brand reasserts and reaffirms its market leader position, aiming to make the concept of being a True Original part of the fabric of British culture and language.

The debut activation is a TV campaign featuring one of the country’s most loved and respected True Originals, Sir Trevor McDonald - who returns to a newsdesk for the first time since he retired 15 years ago. As well as some less original imitations, such as a goat in an Argentina shirt and a real-life hedgehog scampering along a pavement.

You can view the ad here.

With a banging soundtrack by British rapping superstar and Brit Award winner Little Simz, the TV work opens with a red door showing the number ‘1’ followed by the seemingly unmistakably smooth tones of Sir Trevor. His VO lists a host of ’truly original’ cultural icons, but the film contrasts these with images of poor imitations, from the Great Wall of China (a not-so-great stone wall) to The Godfather (a nervous man holding a baby).

The work takes another humorous turn towards the finale: "There's only one biscuit... the true original... And one person to tell you about it. Me, Trevor McDonald.” Viewers then see a Sir Trevor impersonator in a cramped VO studio and realise it was a fake all along. Until the camera pans to a flashy news studio where the true original news reader is holding a genuine McVitie’s biscuit. “Actually, it’s Sir Trevor McDonald, and I’ll take it from here”, he says.

Directed by Pulse Films’ Sam Pilling, director of short films such as “I Love You I Hate You”, featuring Little Simz and music video such as Nobody Speak for DJ Shadow and Run the Jewels, the ad was shot entirely on film with a 4:3 aspect ratio, giving the work a stylistic edge and championing the biscuit as the star.

The campaign launches from 4th October and ‘There is only one’ will be initially broadcast across TV, Cinema, BVOD and OLV until 11th November and supported by a wave of activity across social and shopper marketing.

Media was handled by MG OMD, which planned a blend of high-reaching AV channels complemented by a sophisticated Paid Social strategy to drive incremental reach and further engagement.

Sir Trevor McDonald said: "This campaign was such a joy to work on. The team were so professional and it was a great collaboration all round. They saw the fun in doing it in the way that we did it. The humour and the fact that it involved an element of impersonating me was definitely amusing. It’s the only time I would/could ever say you’ve got it wrong, it’s ‘Sir’ Trevor McDonald. And the biscuits are good too.”

Aslı Özen Turhan, Chief Marketing Officer at pladis UK&I said: “We’ve been making and baking the nation’s favourite biscuits for over 180 years, so we’re firmly embedded in the nation’s routine and store cupboards. As the category’s True Original, McVitie’s is often copied – but never equalled – and our campaign will reinforce that in the nation’s psyche. There’s only one, after all.

“The TV campaign is already coming up trumps in pre-testing, with the advert achieving our best ever brand equity score and high levels of emotional engagement, with the ‘only one’ message coming through strongly thanks to the creative’s humour and storytelling.”

Paul Jordan, Executive Creative Director at TBWA\London, said: “True Originals gives us an amazingly rich platform to continue creating great work and cultural moments that not only reaffirm McVitie’s status as an iconic leader in the category but also as an integral part of

British culture. And we’ve got loads more massive moments lined up after this one. And what better True Original than Sir Trevor McDonald to launch the whole lot? He's loved by all generations, and it was a real privilege to spend time with him when he wasn't shooting.”


1 The Grocer, Britain’s Biggest Brands 2022

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