Creative Circle: Yousuke Ozawa + Chow Kok Keong

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Creative Circle: Yousuke Ozawa + Chow Kok Keong

Campaign Brief Asia asks two creative thinkers from the region to highlight recent great work that caught their eye from around Asia and globally. Creative Circle contributors this week are Yousuke Ozawa (above left) and Chow Kok Keong (right).


Yousuke Ozawa
Creative Director
UltraSuperNew Tokyo
Asia: The real effects of this pandemic is happening right around my house.

A neighborhood chicken shop, I love visiting, is out of business and closing after 50 years. A family business that was passed on for generations is now just an empty building.

It’s scary to think how much this neighborhood could change by the end of 2021. The government is also bleeding money from helping all businesses across Japan, and it seems like we’re going down a spiral.

When I saw this idea, not only did I think it was a brilliant idea, but I also saw hope. This could potentially be a platform that could create new opportunities here as well. This may be the light that shines through this dark time.

Big corporations used to kill small businesses, but this idea, respectfully, brings two sides together for a greater cause. Sharing limelight, expertise, and opportunities, will not only create an alternative business model but dramatically increase the reputation of corporations taking part in this initiative. I think this is a win-win situation for everyone. That is why I think this idea is a winner!

I hope companies in here too, can come together to get through this.


Creative Circle: Yousuke Ozawa + Chow Kok Keong

Global: I think water coolers are one of the best inventions ever made. It allowed organic conversation between people, which sparked ideas and innovations. In other words, I believe “Bull**itting” can turn into gold.

That will never happen in a conference call. There’s too much effort involved to make it natural. We have to notify the other person, make sure they are available, book a time, send a link, and finally have a conversation. By the time you start talking, you’re already exhausted or forget what you wanted to talk about in the first place. Inevitably, no matter the subject matter, video conferences can feel formal and businesslike.

The reason I think this is a great idea is because it changes the way we see video conferences. It’s a platform, closest to becoming a water cooler, allowing people to, potentially, spark innovative ideas by having a little fun. Also, I love the song.


Creative Circle: Yousuke Ozawa + Chow Kok Keong

Chow Kok Keong
Regional Executive Creative Director
Hakuhodo International
Asia: Tons of Covid-related CSR films flooded around early last year, I can’t differentiate 99% of them! You know what I mean, and some would know how I feel, ha ha. Skip, skip and skip till I saw this fabulous film – Dear client: Thank you for cancelling our work.

The film tells the story in an unique way. While you’re laughing aloud at their usual Thai humour, your emotion suddenly changed when they revealed the true reasons for cancelling the agency’s advertising campaign due to their charity donations to fight against Covid-19.

So, this is my pick from Asia. Love the simplicity and the unique execution. Well done, Wunderman Thompson Thailand, and kudos to their brave client.


Creative Circle: Yousuke Ozawa + Chow Kok Keong

Global: My pick is The Tampon Book. It is not just a smart ad, it outsmarted the law!

I love its creativity and it’s not just about creating awareness on the unfair tax on tampons, but sarcastically demonstrating how ignorant the sexist law is. Since books are taxed at 7 percent in Germany and tampons are taxed at 19 percent, they hid the tampons inside books and sold them as books to reduce tax…brilliant!

From design’s perspective, I also love at how they crafted the book. Simple yet bold illustration style, with only 2 colours – black and the colour red – a relevant colour which did not escape my notice. The Tampon Book was done by a creative shop in Germany called Scholz & Friends.


Creative Circle: Yousuke Ozawa + Chow Kok Keong