How Jef Loeb makes political ads people actually watch
These days, it’s tougher than ever to create political ads that break through. Maybe that’s why the big players mostly make those predictable testimonial or data-driven ads, and then spend massively on media in the hope of making an impression. But director/creative director/writer Jef Loeb has a better idea. He knows that people don’t watch political ads—they watch what interests them, and sometimes that happens to be a political ad. In other words, this challenging environment is no different from any insanely competitive marketing category: what breaks through is a compelling creative idea, presented in a memorable way. That could be a CG-driven tour de force, like Jef’s “Dominos” (check it out—it’s a great visual idea, treated with a remarkable cinematic approach). Or a lower-budget ad like “TRUTH,” created entirely from graphics and stock imagery, but still featuring a clever surprise twist. But whatever he’s directing, instead of starting with a budget figure or a bunch of data points, Jef begins with a bold idea and then finds a way to bring it to life that’s polished, big-looking, and memorable, whatever the budget might be. In other words, he makes ads people watch—that just happen to be political.