The new online campaign for Blind Barber, the upscale chain of barbershops and grooming products, introduces Washington Nationals All-Sta...
The new online campaign for Blind Barber, the upscale chain of barbershops and grooming products, introduces Washington Nationals All-Star Bryce Harper as its spokesperson, as well as providing the perfect opportunity for Tessa Films to not only showcase their impressive production skills, but also their unique ability to collaborate with smart, forward thinking brands on overall creative strategy.
The creatively driven production house led by Lisa Masseur and Reid Brody played an integral role in the multi-faceted campaign that involved producing a faux social media clip of Harper using two hairdryers to achieve his signature look. The clip was then posted to his brother’s Instagram and Twitter feeds and quickly became a resounding viral success with nearly 1 million views in just 3 days and has been the subject of a plethora of earned media coverage in ESPN, USA Today, Washington Post, NBC’s Today Show and more.
But that was just phase one: That viral success laid the ground-work for the launch of the main online ad – a comedic gem directed and written by Tessa’s Tim Mason, with creative direction from Tessa Director Duncan Wolfe – that features a montage of Harper psyching himself up in the bathroom mirror while styling his hair and beard.
Masseur notes, “Because Tim’s background is in improv comedy as a veteran of Second City’s Mainstage, he created an atmosphere on set that allowed Bryce to relax into his character and have fun which led to the natural, genuine-feeling comedic performance that seems to really be resonating with the general public.
Matt Buchwach, Creative Director at Blind Barber, adds that the development of the concept was very organic and that feeling comes out in the final spot. ”“The creative process involved equal parts Bryce, Tessa and Blind Barber,” Buchwald says. “All of us collaborated on everything from the overall concept, down to the words and actions in the script.”
For Jeff Laub, one of Blind Barber’s co-owners, Tessa Films brought to the project pure professionalism, beautiful film, a comedic script and the best, most optimistic attitude on the planet.
“Tim, Duncan, Lisa and their crew made this thing come to life in a way that we could have only dreamt of,” Laub says. “Letting go of the actual production is a new thing for us, and Tessa made sure the final product still had the Blind Barber voice. It was awesome to work with such an experienced and creative group that still wanted to hear all of our ideas out from shot selection to script.”
The biggest challenge Mason faced directing the project centered on managing the limited availability of Harper, (who was in the middle of spring training during the shoot), as well as making sure the Instagram video looked as “unprofessional” as possible.
“We shot in Florida and worked around Bryce's spring training schedule, so we had a pretty limited window of time to get this done,” Mason notes. “The other big execution challenge was making sure that the Instagram video didn't come off as fake or staged. The goal was to get as much free press as we could and key to that was making sure that the video looked like it was actually filmed by Bryce’s brother.”
Mason adds, “This project gave us a great opportunity to showcase what we can do. We're not just a production company – we're a collection of creators, writers, filmmakers and creative directors. Because Blind Barber brought us in on the ground floor, we were able to partner not just on the production aspects but also on the creative ideas and the launch strategy. It was an exciting project and I'm glad that we got to be a part of it.
Client: Blind Barber
Project: Social/online campaign
Co-Owners: Jeff Laub, Josh Boyd, Adam Kirschenbaum, Matt Breen, Bryce Harper
Creative Director: Matt Buchwach
PR Director: Faith Dallal
Director of Social Media: Chris Rogers
Production/Creative: Tessa Films, Chicago, IL
Director/Writer: Tim Mason
Creative Director: Duncan Wolfe
Executive Producers: Lisa Masseur and Reid Brody
Post: Optimus, Chicago, IL
Editor: Mike Berg
Assistant Editor: Jenny Schaye
Senior Audio Engineer: Marina Killion
Finish Artists: Paul Rosckes, Connor Luczak
EP: Tracy Spera
EP/Managing Director: Brian Hrastar
Colour: The Mill, Chicago, IL
Colourist: Mikey Pehanich
Colour Assist: Lindsey Mazur
Colour Producer: Dan Butler
Colour Executive Producer: Laurie Andrianopoli