The Monkeys release first work for Holden, telling women ‘Nothing to Prove? Prove It’

The Monkeys have released its first work for Holden, promoting the car brand’s latest SUV Equinox model through its new brand platform ‘Nothing To Prove? Prove It’.

The creative agency won the account in August, with Holden telling Mumbrella the partnership was an opportunity to create more emotional advertising and market to women.

The campaign includes two hero 45 second television commercials which feature a mother crowdsurfing at her daughter’s first concert and a group of women driving home from a ‘fancy dress’ school reunion.

Mark Harland, director of marketing and customer experience at Holden, told Mumbrella the campaign aims to slot into the “sweet spot” and appeal to women by using the attitude of ‘nothing to prove’.

“The women are making the decisions on mid-size SUVs which is the fastest growing segment in Australia. They’re the ones driving the SUVs, and as we looked at the competition, not a lot of people were in that space.

“This attitude of ‘nothing to prove’ appeals to women and we think women that are going to aspire to our brand.”

The campaign also features shorter 15 second spots which are set at a school pick up, family road trip and a car park.

Harland said using The Monkeys as its creative agency for the new model helped the brand deliver not just a message but an attitude.

“We had our eyes open with some of our conversations with The Monkeys and we said this is an attitude now, let’s go there, let’s have those conversations and let’s say those things that Australian families say to each other.

“What The Monkeys brought was the execution of that attitude. It’s in what the people say, it’s in how they film the work, it’s in the facial expressions, so they brought that extra attitude across every touch point.”

“When we have got world class products, and the reason we brought a world class agency on that is growing there business in The Monkeys that really loves iconic Australian brands was to change, and I need people to be passionate about Holden and notice that something different is going on,” Harland added.

At the time of The Monkeys’ appointment, Harland told Mumbrella the agency was recruited to help the brand as it had previously been “lost in the mix”.

“Holden used to mean something, Holden was very emotional in Australia – you were either red or blue, you were either Ford or Holden – and somewhere along the way we have gotten lost in the mix, so what I want to do is bring Holden back and get some emotional responses and it may not all be positive but it will be emotional,” the marketer said back in August.

Justin Drape, co-founder and group chief creative officer, said it was a “fun” campaign to create.

“It’s fun to create a campaign with a point of view and champion women who know what they want and aren’t afraid to go after it. Equinox speaks to that mindset perfectly,” Drape said in a statement.

Speaking about why he decided to launch the ads a few weeks out from Christmas, Harland said the Christmas period is a “tricky” time of year for advertising, so the brand would focus on pushing the ads out in January.

“Christmas is a tricky period here, a lot of people are out of their houses and they are not watching TV and if they are watching TV, from my understanding, it’s usually Big Bash that’s going on in the background and the families are out at the beach.

“Media over Christmas and New Years is not great so what I didn’t want to do is do a big TV launch in November when we also didn’t have any vehicles.

“We have programming during the Big Bash, and then as [we] get more vehicles we will start to amplify the TV.”


  • Client: Holden
  • General Manager Marketing Communications & Digital: Natalie Davey
  • Senior Manager Brand Communications: Brooke Jamison
  • Brand Manager: Bridget McMillan
  • Brand Executive: Lucy Matthews
  • Agency: The Monkeys
  • Co-founder & Group CCO: Justin Drape
  • Creative Director: Ben Sampson
  • Cofounder & Group CEO: Mark Green
  • Managing Director: Matt Michael
  • Art Director: V.Wassim Kanaan
  • Copywriter: Steve May
  • Group Content Director: Sam McConnell
  • Content Director: Veronique Proulx
  • Content Executive: Tasha Strachan
  • Digital Planner: Tim Smith
  • Innovations Director: Jay Morgan
  • Senior Producer: Penny Brown
  • Production House: OTTO Empire
  • Director: Chris Balmond
  • Executive Producer: Jo de Fina
  • Producer: Cathy Rechichi
  • DOP: Daniel Ardilley
  • Post Production: The Editors
  • Editor: Ryan Boucher & Jesscia Mustascio
  • Producer: Tivoli Conway
  • Executive Producer: Nicoletta Rousianos

Get the latest media and marketing industry news (and views) direct to your inbox.

Sign up to the free Mumbrella newsletter now.



Sign up to our free daily update to get the latest in media and marketing.