Beaverbrook says there’s nothing sexy about beige

There are no songs about “Beige suede shoes” or “Pretty in beige,” so Alberta homebuilder Beaverbrook Developments is urging house hunters to look beyond that blandest of colours in a new campaign. The “Don’t Be Beige” campaign, developed by Toronto boutique agency Giants & Gentlemen to promote Beaverbrook’s One At Windermere development in Edmonton, runs […]

There are no songs about “Beige suede shoes” or “Pretty in beige,” so Alberta homebuilder Beaverbrook Developments is urging house hunters to look beyond that blandest of colours in a new campaign.

The “Don’t Be Beige” campaign, developed by Toronto boutique agency Giants & Gentlemen to promote Beaverbrook’s One At Windermere development in Edmonton, runs through January and includes print, online banners and a 30-second TV spot (a rarity for the category) that is also running in cinema pre-roll.

The spot opens on a couple in bed, with the man leaning over to cuddle the woman, who says “Not now Harold.” The man responds, “Harold?” and the couple look at each other in surprise before the woman sighs “Oh geez” in a manner suggesting this has happened before. The reason for the mix up has more to do with real estate than anything salacious.


Print ads feature a beige background accompanied by messages including “Save the monotony for your job” and “Vanilla is for ice cream.”

“They really want to break the mold within the category and do work that’s creative and stands out,” said Alanna Nathanson, partner and creative director at Giants & Gentlemen, of the agency’s charter client. “We’ve been doing interesting work for all the developments, but it was really nice to do a commercial for them, which is unusual for the category.”

Nathanson said the unconventional media approach is intended to reflect the unique nature of the houses within the One At Windemere development. Giants & Gentlemen was involved in multiple facets of the development itself, from coming up with its name and logo to providing input on house designs. “The more involved we can be, the better,” said Nathanson.

Launched last March by Nathanson, her former Taxi 2 partner Natalie Armata and former Publicis vice-president and brand director Gino Cantalini, Giants & Gentlemen has grown its client roster to approximately eight in the ensuing 10 months. It has worked with clients including Cineplex, Delsey Luggage, Mother Parker’s Tea & Coffee and Park’N Fly, for which it recently launched a new radio campaign. The agency now boasts a full-time staff of five backed by several contract positions and a network of freelancers and will soon open its first office space.

Giants & Gentlemen closed out 2012 by landing the assignment for SIR Corp.’s Alice Fazooli’s and Canyon Creek brands, as well as the assignment for a new wine from Treasury Wine Estates (which counts Wolf Blass, Lindeman’s and Rosemount Estate among its brands) called 19 Crimes. The wine is set to launch in several Canadian markets later this year.

Brands Articles

Future Shop stores closing, some converting to Best Buys

Closure will result in the loss of 500 full-time and 1,000 part-time jobs

CMOs want the “brand” back in branded content

At IAB Engage, marketers for Molson, Kraft, Cara Foods talk branded content strategy

Airbnb signs deal to sponsor 2016 Rio Olympic Games

Online community is the Games' first alternative accommodations sponsor

Grey Canada gets a shot at Tequila Herradura

Brown-Forman brand awards digital CRM and below-the-line duties to WPP shop

Metro pairs fashion with food

Grocer partners with fashion magazine Flare on food-focused marketing campaign

Activia kicks off campaign with world record attempt

Yogurt brand positions itself as a "lifestyle partner" through Rogers Media partnership

HBO Canada gives fans a chance to sit on the Iron Throne

Selection of Game of Thrones products available at Toronto pop-up shop

Frank & Oak push pop-up competition in the U.S.

Montreal-based retailer is giving consumers the power to pick temporary locations

How to create an engaging flyer

Expert Patrick Rodmell shares five best practices that apply to all retail sectors