• Transform magazine
  • March 22, 2019


BBC Creative hits new stride

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Two years after the BBC launched BBC Creative, the corporation’s in-house agency is hitting its stride.

Starting in 2005, the BBC had been contracting out its trails, idents and graphics to Red Bee Media. The BBC launched BBC Creative in early 2016 partially to produce this collateral more efficiently and save money on outside contracting. Shortly after this announcement, Tony Hall spoke about “simplifying and modernising the BBC” and championed in-house productions by saying “At its core, the BBC is a programme-maker. We have been, right from the start and… it’s the most important test for the health of the BBC.” Furthering this aim, BBC Creative recently developed BBC Reith, a custom typeface that will save the corporation hefty typeface licensing fees and is purposefully designed to be as readable as possible.

BBC Creative’s brand identity was developed along with London-based agency Spin. Bringing another dimension to the iconic boxes inside the BBC logo, Spin’s BBC Creative logo opens up the BBC boxes as if they are origami to create a dynamic ‘C’ (Creative) shape. Of their branding, Spin says, “The concept offers a potentially endless visual language, providing a springboard that captures the spirit of adventure and intent within BBC Creative.” Perhaps it’s just the zeitgeist but the branding appears quite akin to the concept behind competitor 4Creative’s branding, except it’s more more slick and futuristic.

Last year 4Creative picked up 11 Cannes Lions awards, including a Grand Prix. Entries opened for the 2018 Cannes Lions awards on 18 January. ‘The Supporting Act’ has given BBC Creative momentum going into awards season and is being helmed by past Cannes Lions winners Aidan McClure and Laurent Simon formerly of Adam & EveDDB. If this in-house content is any indication, BBC Creative is on its way to fulfilling its adventurous brand mandate.

In the fall of 2017, it won its first Clio award for its BBC Four music indents and 17 PromaxBDA awards. Now its 2017 Christmas short, ‘The Supporting Act,’ is up for a 2018 British Animation Award. The film has received close to 1.2m views on YouTube, making it BBC Creative’s most successful ident since its launch.

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