Saatchi creates sexy campaign for Wedding Republic

January 20, 2011  |  Chris Powell  |  Comments

Some i’s have all the fun in a new campaign for Ottawa-based online gift registry Wedding Republic

Debuting yesterday on YouTube and the Wedding Republic blog, the one-minute video from Saatchi & Saatchi Toronto comes in both a censored and uncensored version.

It shows a pair of animated i’s–introduced as Ian and Irene–meeting at a party with a group of other letters. Over an orchestral score, the video shows the two letters becoming increasingly attracted to each other over shared interests like music, books, food and unicorns(!)–all of which are depicted in thought bubbles over their heads.

The video goes on to show them imagining their future. Irene is shown thinking about romantic acts like watching the sunset and eventually buying a house and raising children, while Ian–despite clearly being, ahem, sans serif–imagines a wide variety of sexual acts that could elicit a few “o’s” from less enlightened viewers. The PG-version of the ad has a bar reading “censored” obscuring the sex acts.

The spot, the first in an open-ended campaign that will chronicle the couple’s relationship, ends with the question “wherever will this lead?” before showing the Wedding Republic logo and throwing to Ian’s Facebook profile page (

Wedding Republic’s co-founder and CEO Hana Abaza said that the creative approach evolved out of the company’s logo, also created by Saatchi, which features the words “Wedd ngRepubl c,” with the two i’s standing together beside them.

Abaza said that while Saatchi developed the concept, she and Wedding Republic co-founder James Kinkaid were supportive of its sexual nature. “We were definitely conscious of making sure it was done in a tasteful way,” she said. “But at the end of the day they’re cartoon characters–they can only be so sexual in nature.”

Launched in beta in February 2010, Wedding Republic is a modern gift registry that enables couples to choose the gifts they really want and have guests contribute cash towards their purchase. More expensive items are represented on the online registry as jigsaw puzzles, giving guests the ability to contribute a certain sum of money to complete the puzzle. Among the most popular gift selections, according to Wedding Republic’s literature, are a honeymoon or a house down payment.

The service caters to what Abaza describes as three core constituencies: “been there, done that couples” who have been living together for several years and have already accumulated all of the traditional wedding gifts like linens and cutlery; “globetrotters,” who might live overseas but have family and friends in North America; and “tired of traditional” couples more focused on memorable life experiences than buying bed linens.

“The i’s are really reflective of the couple coming together,” said Abaza. “We really see it as a couple that should be making their marriage about them. Too often weddings in general are about pleasing everybody else around you and coming to compromises.”

Tags: Saatchi & Saatchi, Wedding Republic

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