The Ri Fiver: Barcap brainteasers scoop February award

Pink Squid called upon some characters from the worldwide weirdosphere to add objective comments to their own opinions of the February Ri Fiver entries.  Here's what they all had to say and, of course, the result.

"Getting mighty tired of seeing the same two faces in the office every day (work it out), us Squids have  greatly enjoyed feeling disturbed by Chatroulette - the new website that pairs random strangers for webcam-based conversations. Quickly becoming the go-to site if you want to chat to some of the most socially depraved people in the world, we thought we'd gather some opinions on this month's work from a few random strangers who weren't otherwise ‘preoccupied' with themselves.

Thames Valley Police Specials

What we thought: At first glance, we loved the art direction. Intense, moody shots that help to set the scene for some juicy story telling. But wait. Where are the stories? There aren't any. The copy lets it down. It's the same on every ad. This makes the campaign seem like one ad done a few different ways. It's almost there, more of a first idea perhaps that needs to be developed. We also felt that this wasn't really convincing anyone to give up their time to work for free. The messages need to appeal to a certain type of person, one who cares about their local community. But these ads lacked that emotion that would make someone want to put themselves in harm's way for the greater good.

What Sebastien, a handsome Technology student from Montpellier, France thought: "I like the playground. I don't like the police. (Some expletives). This will not work in France."


Teaser Blog:

Twitter feed:

YouTube channel:

Careers website:

What we thought: The first of two entries with an alien theme this month. Took us a while to work out what the crazy big, fat Easy button was all about - then we saw the strap line at the top and it made more sense, but it could've been better explained from the off. On the whole, there are some really well crafted and thoughtful displays of creativity to explore. We particularly loved the way the films are presented (and the EXCELLENT acting by Stephen Dix and Russell Lynch). It's really shows when a concept is worked deeper into a site rather than leaving it all behind as soon as you leave the Home page. We did kinda get the feeling the Creatives have run away with the ‘Discover the truth' idea without really telling us what ‘the truth' is and why it's so important. Was there a lie? Who's been lying about Staples?

What Anna, a school teacher wearing a blue bra, from nr Bremen, Deutschland thought: "Yes, it is fun. I like the red button. It is unusual and it makes you look."

Runner up: Orange

What we thought: Very nice. Sweet. Lovely execution. Non-offensive really. Teamed with last month's microsite, it's a solid campaign. Only criticisms are that it takes a while to get going, you've got to stick with it for a bit before you feel like you're getting to the point - the call to action. And it's verging on gimmicky but in a way that's just right for volume, call centre roles, so we forgive it. We like because it's different and not what you'd expect from a corporate, global brand such as Orange.

What Stuart, a bearded Security Guard from Leeds thought: "Interesting. It's cool, I like the way the spaceship follows the cursor. It's not clear what the job is doing though. It's better than the balloon animals Orange does."

Our winner: Barclays Capital

What we thought: The online games are not as visually stimulating as the rest of the ‘trading floor' website and the trading game seems to be more about reactions than learning about buying or selling, but we like the functionality and sophistication of the various puzzles. The target audience are graduates, so it can afford to be a bit more fun, and especially if it's something they should want to pass on to their friends. There's more reward to be found on campus with the assorted installations. It definitely creates more of an impact having a few games to choose from, we're not sure any one game would be strong enough alone. The engaging aspect of people getting stuck in and having a go moves the brand away from being another stuffy old financial institution.  It's our winner as it shows there's still a lot more potential to be had on-campus. It's not all about a wallpaper exhibition stand and some flyers. We wish more clients were brave (and rich) enough to run more of the stunning on-campus ideas we've seen over the years (a tank anyone?).

What Michele, an Internet Cafe owner from Napoli, Italy thought: "I think this looks good in a college or in a square. It's good for people to connect and play. You can have giant chess. What do you win? A job? Where?""

Congratulations to Stafford Long and Barclays Capital, who win the February Ri Fiver.  Commiserations to all who came close, and thanks to everyone who entered.  Thanks too to our judges, Nic, Manj and Tsz at Pink Squid.

The closing date for the March competition is Wednesday, 31st March, 2010, at midnight. Entries please (free-of-charge) to Two eminent freelancers have agreed to judge: the art director Lisa Mendes, and writer Phil Woodford.  There are a few simple rules - please click here for details.

Be an Ri Fiver partner: we are looking for new partners to help support and promote the Ri Fivers, the only monthly awards for creative excellence in recruitment communication. Please contact Kevin Turner ( to discuss the possibilities.

Sunday, 28 February 2010

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Anonymous Date: Jun 8, 2010

Ground control to Bernard Hodes... That Staples site is just insane - and not in a good way. I wonder if anyone who's joined Staples was in any way convinced to do so by the Blair Witch/Post It note videos or the Twitter stream.

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