A ‘Monster’ of a new Bears campaign from Two by Four


The Chicago Bears are back in business.  And once again, the question no doubt uppermost in the minds of the team’s legions of fans is whether the Bears will make it to the Super Bowl this season.

Hope, ya know, springs eternal.

Two By Four/Chicago, the ad agency of record for the Bears, is certainly doing its part — via a new ad campaign just breaking — to spark hope that this year’s team has the athletic talent and the ferocity to get the job done.

Indeed, Two by Four has definitely ratcheted up the intensity of the marketing message in a new TV commercial that puts team members literally in the middle of a sea of exploding, firecracker-like special effects. 

Using an underscoring of macho, pounding rock music, the commercial is a fast-paced montage of various Bears team members in action on the field.  No voiceover.  Just the action-filled visuals. Local production house Cutters Inc. and Sol Design FX both lent their expertise to the spot.

The new TV spot ends with the line “Believe in Monsters” flashed on the screen and a final burst of fireworks as the Bears logo materializes against a backdrop of columns intended to symbolize Soldier Field.  The Bears have long been known as the “Monsters of the Midway,” so the new campaign is obviously playing off that familiar nickname.

Campaign emphasis on team’s sense of power

 Adam VonOhlen, Two by Four CD In previous seasons, Two by Four ad campaigns for the Bears have stressed the team’s close connection to the city and the devotion of Bears fans.  This time around, however, the emphasis is more on the team’s commanding sense of power, which will be necessary if the Bears are to make it all the way to the Super Bowl.  And win.

“This year’s campaign still celebrates the unique bond between the Bears, their fans and Chicago, but it also portrays their talented, hardworking players in a stoic, almost heroic light — which we feel they deserve,” said Two by Four creative director Adam VonOhlen.

“This fall’s campaign communicates that we mean business in a fresh, powerful way,” added Bears vice-president of sales and marketing Chris Hibbs.

The new TV commercial is complemented by no fewer than 16 out-of-home executions featuring various team members. These will appear on area billboards, at Metra stations and on CTA bus and train transit cards.

The OOH ads all play to the same theme emphasized in the new TV commercial, namely that this group of Bears players is one tough bunch of dudes.  “Crueler by the lake” screams one headline.  “Our story has a beginning, a middle and a very scary end,” says another.  “Having history is great. Making history is better,” says yet another.

Two by Four commissioned France-based illustrator Caroline Blanchet to assist in realizing the look of the out-of-home advertising. Among other things, Blanchet helped infuse the images of players in the ads with a larger-than-life feel.

Bears photographer Bill Smith shot the images of team members used in the new out-of-home campaign.  And the Bears can be seen wearing the new Nike Elite NFL uniforms they are debuting this season.

Two by Four credits: Executive creative director, David Stevenson; creative director, Adam VonOhlen; art director, Mike Vithoulkas; copywriters: Matt Kappmeyer, Alex DiBucci, McCamie Cole, Eamon Conway; illustrator: Caroline Blanchet.

Production/post: Editing and graphics, Cutters Inc. and Sol FX Design, executive producer Neal Cohen.  Editors, Mark Jepson, Tom Brassil; Sol FX creative director Chris Andersen; designers Colby Capes designer and Brad Backoson.

Contact Lewis Lazare at LewisL3@aol.com.

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