To mark its 50th birthday, D&AD is delving into its archive to highlight significant pieces of work that have featured in the awards. We will be publishing one a week. This time, it’s the turn of Mather & Crowther’s Go to work on an egg campaign which started in 1957 but was first awarded by D&AD in 1965
By 1965, the slogan ‘Go to work on an egg’ (print ad from 1965 D&AD Annual above) was already embedded in the British consciousness thanks to a long-running TV campaign starring Tony Hancock.
Eggs had only come off rationing in 1953. In 1957 The British Egg Marketing Board was formed in order to bring stability to the market and give consumers a regular supply of high quality eggs at reasonable prices. One of its first acts was to introduce the British Lion mark: eggs were required to be stamped with their specific grade and packing station number.
The BEMB asked ad agency Mather & Crowther to produce an ad campaign promoting the regular use of eggs. Their solution, Go to work on an egg’, became one of the longest running and most famous slogans of its time. Author Fay Weldon is often attributed with it, although she has said that, though head of copy at the agency at the time, she cannot remember whether or not she actually came up with the line.
Whoever wrote it, the slogan spawned some of the most entertaining early commercials seen on British TV, which were also among the first to make use of a celebrity, Hancock being perhaps the most popular comedian of the time.
D&AD’s 50-year timeline of landmark work is here
Creative Review’s February issue will feature our 20 favoruite slogans of all time
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