Denyque banking on new ad campaign
While many artistes were busy cutting dubs for politicians to use as part of their campaigns this election season, dancehall artiste Denyque was voicing jingles for the Bank of Jamaica (BOJ). The advertisement, which is part of the BOJ’s inflation targeting campaign, has been making the rounds on social media. It has been viewed more than half a million times on Twitter, making it the fastest of the tracks voiced for the ad campaign to hit that mark. Reggae singer Tarrus Riley, TV host Talia Soares and comedian/actor/artiste Donald ‘Iceman’ Anderson have all voiced songs for the BOJ’s inflation campaign.
In an interview with The Gleaner, Donovan Watkis, CEO of ThinkMedia, the company responsible for spearheading and conceptualising the campaign, said he is happy Denyque’s jingle is performing as well as it has, but admits he is not surprised. “This particular campaign is about the BOJ’s monetary policy of low, stable, predictable inflation. They reached out to my company to bring some culture to the subject so it’s more relatable. So I’ve been working closely with them to produce and direct video, radio ads and billboard illustrations for the campaign. The reach is beyond Jamaica so I think people love the ad because it’s an otherwise uninteresting topic communicated in a fun way,” he said.
“The local and international target demography has lauded them. Denyque performed well, the music is also infectious and the idea of an inflation dance makes it all the more interesting. It speaks to the power of Jamaican culture and music to send complex messages in a short time. As director, I made sure to capture the heart of the people in each advertisement and all the others have gone viral and been featured in over 25 international publications.”
Watkis says Denyque’s ad has been getting a lot of attention not just in Jamaica but has also reached countries on the continents of Africa, Asia and Europe. He revealed that even economists on the Wall Street circuit have begun to take note. “Both the Canadian Central Bank governor and the UK Central Bank governor have expressed how impressed they are and want other central banks to use culture to communicate complex subjects. It is outpacing all the other advertisements in the campaign and has certainly exceeded our expectations,” he said.
Watkis pointed out that with Denyque being involved with the campaign, the Proud Wifey singer will enjoy a career boost.
“It was great directing Denyque for this ad campaign. She delivered exactly how we wanted her to. She will no doubt gain some new fans and in the economist circles no less.”
Denyque told The Gleaner that she was happy to have been a part of the project. “It was amazing. I have never done anything like this before and I feel great knowing that it has been getting so much attention,” she said.
“I never expected it and it’s so crazy because this is just a bank commercial. But big ups to JR (Watkis) and the BOJ for their vision and, of course, big ups to the dancers Kimiko and Sara and everybody who was on point during the shoot. I think people like the ad so much because it’s catchy, it’s something new, something fresh and it’s fun. It really makes you want to get up and dance. And it’s talking about something that not many people are interested in and so it creates social awareness, which is what the campaign was aiming at in the first place.”