Gods and goddesses from all faiths unite over lamb in The Monkeys new MLA ad

Pippa Chambers
By Pippa Chambers | 4 September 2017

Gods, goddesses and prophets can be seen chowing down on a succulent feast of lamb (and peas) in the latest ad from Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA).

Once again, in cahoots with its agency of record The Monkeys, the creative juices are in full flow for an integrated campaign which builds on the long established 'We Love Our Lamb' brand position.

The new spring lamb campaign says that for every Australian, from every background, lamb is the meat more people can eat, reiterating lamb’s “strategic promise of bringing everyone together” - no matter their background, religious beliefs or dietary requirements.

The content, shot by director Steve Rogers, shows for the first time in history the gods, goddesses and prophets of different faiths and beliefs coming together over lamb at a modern day spring BBQ.

The campaign will be delivered to Australians in a long form film and 30 second TV ads via an integrated media strategy, social amplification, out of home, a bespoke digital media partnership and PR.

To further drive engagement among younger audiences and to reinforce the above-the-line activity, MLA has also partnered with youth publisher Pedestrian to "connect and inspire young Aussies" to cook with lamb. The partnership includes content, simple recipe inspiration and a competition, all centred on shared lamb dishes and coming together with friends.

MLA and The Monkeys are no stranger to controversy with past ads being criticised. It remains to be seen what complaints could roll into the Advertising Standards Board based on the new ad.

So far it's drawn two comments on its Facebook page with one saying: “I don't get it. Why bring religion into it. It's way too risky as a strategy to leverage a marketing campaign on religious commentary or jokes. Lamb is great to eat and easy to cook.”

Group marketing manager at MLA Andrew Howie says: “Since the late 1980s lamb has proved itself as the meat that brings people together.

“More recently under the banner of ‘You Never Lamb Alone’ we have continued to push the creative boundaries. In this latest campaign we are showing no matter your beliefs, background or persuasion, the one thing we can all come together and unite over, is lamb.”

MLA's media agency UM will introduce and drive awareness of the content to Australians through a broadcast strategy across TV, online video and social. To help communicate lamb as “the most inclusive of meats”, this activity will be followed by product-focused messaging across small format transit out of home and a locational-based mobile campaign.

PR will spread lamb’s message of unity and inclusivity through earned media activity, including research exploring the modern-day Australian dinner party, an intimate media event hosted by chef Thi Le at Anchovy, Melbourne, and new recipes to inspire the nation to cook with lamb.

Chief creative officer at The Monkeys Scott Nowell says: “It's a reality of modern Australia that people of all faiths and backgrounds can get along around a table; coming together to celebrate what unites us as a nation. And, Lamb lovers have taught us that we should try to do it more often.” 

MLA's spring campaign last year saw outspoken brand link lamb with sexuality, culture and language. In September 2016 MLA tackled head on a notion that had been discussed at length - that there's a lot of the same faces being shown on TV screens and in advertising.

Shot in one take by director Paul Middleditch, the ad featured indigenous Australians including Olympian Cathy Freeman, Rugby League player Greg Inglis and model Samantha Harris. Other Aussies included Greek-transgender comedian Jordan Raskopoulos, television presenter Luke Jacobz, Bengali-Australian actor Arka Das and a long list of Australian extras. Check it out below.

Sprin Lamb Campaign 2017 Credits:
MLA Group Marketing Manager: Andrew Howie
MLA Brand Manager - Lamb: Matthew Dwyer
Advertising Agency: The Monkeys
Media Agency: UM
PR Agency: One Green Bean

The Monkeys
Chief Creative Officer/ Co-founder: Scott Nowell
Creative Director: Scott Dettrick
Creative team: Tim Pashen and Scott Zuliani
Head of planning: Michael Hogg
Planner: Charlotte Marshall
Head of production: Thea Carone
Senior Producer: Jade Rodriguez
Managing Director: Matt Michael
Group Content Director: Humphrey Taylor
Senior Content Director: Katie Wong-Hee
Content Manager: Victoria Zourkas

Client Group Director: Mike Worden
Senior Client Director: Ed Passerotti
Client Manager: Jacqui Ollevou
Strategy Director: David Toussaint
Senior Connections Designer: Ashleigh Vogel
Partnerships Director: Simon Turner
Partnerships Manager: Jessica Ngu
Partnership Trader: Emily Ng

Production Company, Revolver
Director: Steve Rogers
DOP: Peter James
EP: Pip Smart

Edit House, Arc
Editor: Pete Sciberras
Post VFX: Fin
VFX Supervisors: Justin Bromley & Richard Betts
Sound: Song Zu
Engineer: Simon Kane

PR - One Green Bean

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