Losing My Advertising Virginity

It was 1985, I was about turn 14 and this ad came along. I wanted to be Nick Kamen and immediately bought a pair of Levi’s 501 and Marvin Gaye’s single – and thought: Bring. It. On.

This is what The Drum wrote about it a couple of years ago: ‘Bartle Bogle Hegarty’s Launderette ad for Levi’s truly demonstrates the power of advertising. It had been many years since Levi’s was considered cool. The commercial was a breakthrough, the say the least. The spot featured a 1950s launderette somewhere in middle America. In walks teen idol Nick Kamen, who strips down to his boxers and stuffs his clothes into a washer. In the background we hear Marvin Gaye’s I Heard It Through The Grapevine, which was re-released, this time with the Levi’s logo on the record sleeve. Sales went through the roof. Levi’s, meanwhile, enjoyed an 800% boost in sales within a year of the 501’s re-launch.’

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