FoxP2 takes its name from the creativity gene that has mutated in human beings over the last 50 000 years. It's the gene most singularly responsible for the advancement of mankind. The gene that allows us to innovate. To adapt. To be creative.


The official 2016 SA Creative Circle rankings see FoxP2 finish third overall in the Group table, behind giants Ogilvy and TBWA. To say we are thrilled would be an understatement. It's our highest overall creative ranking in FoxP2's history and a massive shout out not just to the Foxes, but also to our clients and partners who made this possible. Significantly, the work that was most creatively awarded was also the most effective, winning Gold Loerie Effectiveness and Silver Apex Effectiveness Awards. That's always been FoxP2's mission - to leverage insight-driven creativity for brilliant business results! Congrats to all the agencies that ranked, keep fighting the good fight.



FoxP2’s distinctive brand of effective creativity continues to build momentum as the agency was recognized with another Gold Loerie Effectiveness Award this year, this time for its Integrated Grand Prix "Open Eyes" campaign for longstanding client Ster-Kinekor. It continues the trend of FoxP2’s creatively awarded campaigns being their most effective. FoxP2’s Grand Prix winning campaign for in 2013 won Apex Effectiveness gold, its multi-awarded Drive Dry “Papa Wag Via Jou” campaign won two Apex awards, its Loerie gold-winning “Some Things Should Only Be Experienced On The Big Screen” won both Apex and Loerie Effectiveness gold, while its recent Garagista “Anti-Hipster” campaign was recognized with both Loerie Effectiveness and Apex Awards. 

These results bear testament to FoxP2's long-held view that creativity is a crucial business tool no marketer can afford to do without. And they're not the only ones, as more and more research is done on the business results creativity can deliver. Stats show that creative award-winning ads generate roughly 50% more market share growth than ads that do not win industry awards (Van Dyck, Advertising Transformed: The New Rules for the Digital Age) while creative advertising is associated with comparatively more earned media coverage, a larger amount of buzz and consumer word-of-mouth advertising. (Goldenberg, Mazrsky & Solomon, University of Jerusalem). Andrew Warner, vice-president of marketing at employment website Monster, and a former marketing chief at Expedia understands the nervousness that exists in the minds of marketers, who are trying to look good in front of their bosses. “They would rather win effectiveness and not creative awards, which can be seen to carry an element of risk," he says. "But if an idea is not brave or does not grab attention, how can it be effective?” 

Mediocrity then is the riskier option and a marketer's only exposure to an uncertain long shot is to not develop a powerful insight-driven creative idea. So, FoxP2 will continually work to push the bar for the kind of courageous creativity that’ll result in better recall and be more predictable in its effectiveness. FoxP2’s successful Trust Is Earned campaign for Coronation Fund Managers recorded the highest recognition and liking scores in the South African financial services arena. Ailing and out of favor Bell Lager achieved 93% brand awareness amongst consumers. Captain Morgan recorded the biggest jump on ‘distinctiveness’ scores for the brand with strongest equity scores in target market of 31.7%, and a 5% market share growth in a declining category. Garagista, the craft beer aimed at hipsters who want things inaccessible to the masses, had only R10,000 to spend on paid media, but achieved an online reach of 79,944,143 and the Drive Dry campaign, for brandhouse, gathered R16 million in earned media - proving again that highly creative campaigns are more reliable investments.

FoxP2 walks the APEX Awards stage twice

FoxP2 walked on stage twice at the 2015 APEX Awards held in Sandton on Monday, 20 July, winning for its digitally-led Garagista ‘Anti-Hipster’ and Ster-Kinekor #MovieFomo campaigns.

The agency has an enviable track record at South Africa’s premiere effectiveness award show since entering it for the first time four years ago, with campaigns for and Ster-Kinekor winning Gold in 2012 and 2014 respectively. In addition, FoxP2’s iconic ‘Pappa Wag Vir Jou’ Drive Dry campaign received the Chairman’s Special Award in 2012. 

All the agency’s APEX-awarded work has been commended for its creativity, proving the agency’s mantra that ‘Creativity Pays’.

The winning work for Garagista saw FoxP2 launch the unknown craft beer into a cluttered market with exceptional results. Says FoxP2 Cape Town ECD and creative circle chairperson, Justin Gomes, “Telling our target market - the hipsters - that our craft beer wasn’t for them was a bold angle, but it was an approach that our client, Steve Miller, embraced from the get-go.”

“He recognised the insight that hipsters want what is not readily available, and when your campaign generates over R25-Million in Earned Media, with a global online reach of over 79 Million, you know it was the right approach to take,” says Gomes.

The campaign proved so successful in the marketplace that FoxP2 worked with the Garagista brewery to launch a follow-up product, ‘Tears Of The Hipster’, which took the South African Craft Beer Festival by storm - selling out in two days and being recognised as the most innovative beer at the Festival. Both campaigns were recently awarded first place at The Creative Circle Awards Of The Month.

Ster-Kinekor followed up its 2014 APEX and Loerie Gold-winning ‘Great moments at their greatest’ campaign with a Silver APEX for Movie FOMO. The campaign increased Ster-Kinekor awareness levels to 100% for the first time ever and market share to 65% - an all-time high. The brand performance converted to strong business results including a 3% increase in ticket sales (versus the same period last year). This is a remarkable performance given the weak slate of films being showed over this period which impacted global attendance trends negatively. Over all, this resulted in an annualised net marketing return on investment of 112%.

Charl Thom, FoxP2 Group CEO says, “Ten years ago, we named ourselves FoxP2 after the creativity gene, believing our clients could benefit exponentially from a highly creative approach that could give them a competitive advantage in the marketplace and deliver commercial results. Apex Awards are notoriously tough to win, and last night proved that our approach continues to deliver business results for our clients.”

View the award-winning work here.

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Creative Circle Award Of The Month for National Geographic Kids “Emoji"

Kids used to spend their days playing outside and discovering all that nature has to offer. These days they spend their lives glued to their phones.

As far they're concerned the natural world consists of a bunch of Emojis.

We needed to remind people that 'Nature has more to offer'.

So we took the Emoji language and used it show just how inferior the digital world is when compared to the vast array of species that exist in the real world.

FoxP2 Ends The Ugly With Superbalist is an online retailer that curates the very best in fashion, tech and décor.

They wanted to raise brand awareness, and drive new consumers to their site over the festive period. A time for giving…and receiving ugly gifts.

We needed to break the cycle. 

With the help of 5 carefully chosen online influencers, we launched “The End Of Ugly” movement.

We then launched a series of online videos that showed the demise of ugly things, and challenged consumers to do the same.

Entries came in and people started to end the ugly, one nasty gift at a time.

The campaign generated over 150,000 views, increased brand awareness, drove new customers to the site, and helped Superbalist record their most profitable festive season yet.

Creative Circle Award Of The Month for Garagista Beer Co "Tears of the Hipster"

We launched Garagista Beer Co. to the market with an “Anti-Hipster” campaign that aimed to take craft beer back from the hipsters. This left a few hipsters feeling rather sad.

With the Cape Town Craft Beer Festival approaching, we needed to make Garagista, a newcomer to the craft beer scene, stand out amongst the clutter and more established brands.

So we created a special new Limited Edition brew just for the festival, and named it “Tears of the Hipster”. 

We then created a series of posters that informed the public about this new beer, its special ingredient, and the unusual methods we used to gather the hipster tears. 

Garagista “Tears of the Hipster” was the most sought after and talked about beer at the festival, with more online mentions and engagements than any other brand. 

It sold out in 2 days and was voted best-named beer of the festival. 

There was so much demand for the beer, Garagista decided to make “Tears of the Hipster” a permanent product in its range.

Project Phoenix Awarded Two One Show Awards

FoxP2 is an agency named after the creativity gene, based on our belief that creativity has the power to positively influence a business' bottom line. A host of creative and effective awards over the last ten years bears testament to this vision.  We wanted use the power of creativity for something different, but no less important – So we created a documentary called “Project Phoenix” and helped transform a former gangster’s tattoos into symbols of hope and new beginnings.

Filmed over 13 months, "Project Phoenix" follows the journey of Roger Mouton, a former member of the “Numbers Gang” and “Hard Livings”, who was forced into gang life at an early age after tragically losing his family. With nothing to lose, he did what he had to in order to survive. After several years, he managed to claw his way out of the darkest pits of the underworld, only to find himself being held back by the gang-assoicated tattoos that cover his body.

Where these once gave status and belonging on the streets, now alienated him from the society he so longed to be part of.

Conceived by FoxP2 Cape Town and Co-Directed by Giant Films’ directors, Robin Goode and Karien Murray, the story witnesses Roger’s transformation at the hands of South Africa’s top tattoo artist and co-founder of Wildfire Tattoos, Manuela Gray. With each session, the two begin to form a complex relationship that ultimately leads to Roger’s ominous chappies being transformed to reflect his inner-change.

We showed the documentary to delegates at the Design Indaba Film Festival and challenged them to help make a better world through creativity.

Since the premiere, support for Roger’s story and the Project Phoenix initiative has come in from all corners. Roger’s story has seen the Western Cape Government ask him to be an ambassador for their community youth programmes and to use “Project Phoenix” as an educational tool to help guide troubled youths away from a life of gangsterism and drugs. 

CREATIVE CIRCLE AWARD OF THE MONTH FOR Garagista Anti-Hipster Integrated Campaign

Garagista Beer Co. was new to the South African craft beer market, a market synonymous with hipsters. With minimal budget we needed to create a launch campaign that put this new beer on the map and get people talking about this newcomer craft beer. So we told them Garagista wasn't for them. It started with a set of posters. We then released an online video of a hipster mob hijacking Garagista's first batch of Limited Edition Craft Beer. We then recruited the broader public to help get our craft beer back. Entries came in and we responded with videos showing the precious beer being retrieved just in time for the official launch. Having spent only R10,000 in paid media, we generated over R25 Million in Earned Media, and got an online reach of over 79 Million. Turning Garagista into South Africa's most sought after craft beer.

#FOXFLAME – TED Global 2014

We’d moved the meetings, we’d loaded the credit card,
we’d bought the obligatory pair of Havaianas.
It was happening. I was off to Rio for the TED Global 2014 conference.
But there was just one small problem. Actually getting in.
To my surprise, the socially powered democratic content phenomenon that is TED, was actually not just a conference that you just go to. You had to be, accepted.

It was around about the time that our interns on the FoxP2 balcony said:
“Dude, you know you can just watch that shit online don’t you?” - when I started thinking there must be a reason all these really smart people trek halfway across the world to go and watch something they can see online anyway.

And there is.

As it turns out, it isn’t all about the speakers.
It’s also very much about the delegates.
So, after an intimate online application where I tried as hard as I could to explain how advertising can actually make peoples’ lives better, I somehow got in.
I was quite surprised, and strangely nervous, but nonetheless I was off to Copacabana Beach to spend a week with a thousand curious and extremely well-educated souls.

Would they smell that I didn’t belong to any charities?
Would those really effective results that I put on that last case study video feel a bit thin?
Would my Grip-jokes amuse them?
Would I be found out for being a guy who makes, advertising? 

Apparently this nervousness is not unique with applicants.
So to alleviate this, the clever people at TED make sure that all delegates wear a big badge round their neck all week.
It says: “TALK TO ME ABOUT… (insert 3 suitably obscure fields of interest here) “

It works bloody well.
That evening I found myself having Caipirinha’s with a Finn who flies drones over naughty cargo ships to check up on their carbon emissions. The next day I was at lunch with an impossibly young rocket scientist and a French artist who documents the music behind obscure religions around the world. 

There were tech billionaires from Palo Alto, car designers, casino bosses, Neuroscientists, performance artists, economists, developers and political activists, all queuing for the urinals.
A meaningful conversation could spring up anywhere - on a beach lounger, at the buffet, or over a cocktail.  
A bit like club 18-30, but for your brain.
Not surprisingly, TED attendees were really into…talking.

And so, contrary to my initial fears, nobody was judging anyone at all.
It was quite the opposite actually. People were warm, extremely curious and just wanted to learn. 

Basking in the glow of “anything’s possible”, I began realising that an environment completely free of judgment is actually a big luxury today.
Being with some of the most interesting people in the world, who make a habit of looking for what’s possible, rather than what isn’t, feels incredibly liberating for a creative person. 

And then of course, there are The Talks.
Those “Ideas Worth Spreading” packaged into 18 minute nuggets that power the TED viral phenomenon.

Its just like the intern said, “You can watch that shit online dude”.
But I really, really urge you to do so. There are some mind-bendingly inspiring sessions from TED global this year.  

There’s a breathtaking photographic documentation of vanishing tribes by Jimmy Nelson, who captures incredibly intimate images by living with these remote people for months at a time. 

There was the beautiful, steely activist, Pia Mancini who discussed her open source mobile platform that lets citizens run their own candidates in the Argentinian election.

And the powerhouse journalist who first published the Snowden Files, Glenn Greenwald, giving a searing talk on why you need to care about privacy, even if you’re not doing anything you need to hide.

There was a guy who prints land with gigantic sediment flow controls.
A woman who creates floating peep shows, and a duo who transform the walls of the Favela’s by moving in and starting a barbecue.

But then there were those talks. The ones with the moments.
Those rare seconds where you feel like you’re literally watching the future unfold right there in the room. 

One was during a talk by Dr Jorge Soto who demonstrated an early cancer detection app on stage for the first time ever.
Another was when the neuroscientist Miguel Nicolelis showed a video of two rats in his lab sending a “mental SMS” to one another through incredible brain melding technology.

And there was one more of those moments.
Probably just a little more special than the rest.
I actually tried to capture it by photographing the hairs on my arm during a standing ovation that nearly took the roof off the main hall. (see crappy image below).
It was for a man who spoke about how he used floating purple lights to get rebel troops to leave the jungle and come home at Christmas time.
A man with purpose and an open-hearted demeanor.
A man by the name of Jose Miguel Sokoloff
A man who works, in advertising.

And so, standing there, cheering my lungs out with some of the world’s most interesting people, I was filled with a quiet sense of pride.
He’s one of us I thought. He’s getting it right I thought.

Sometimes we will get it right like LoweSSP3 and the floating Christmas lights.
But mostly we’ll get it wrong, like the majority of what’s on our screens today.
I think what will help, is to find purpose behind your work, and to take responsibility for what you aim to put out into the world.

So, like many of the attendees at TED, we’re also in the business of ideas.
And we have quite a lot of them in advertising. Most will go unseen, forever trapped in a notepad, or an email, or a relationship. Others will survive and mutate in boardrooms, often into something quite indistinguishable from the original. So when we’re lucky enough to have an idea that does make it out into society pure and unscathed, lets try and make sure it’s an “Idea Worth Spreading”.

Links to some of the mentioned talks below. Please visit for more of talks from TED Global as they become available over the weeks to come.

The future of early cancer detection?

How to upgrade democracy for the Internet era

Why privacy matters

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