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Coates Hire – When You Needa… (2020)

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Creative agency The Royals (not to be confused with the troubled well-to-do family of the same name) crafted this integrated campaign for Coates Hire — an Australian equipment rental company.

Aimed at tradies (or tradespeople, to UK readers), it positions Coates as the one-stop shop for any and all jobs. When you needa…*insert whatever you need to get the job done*, it’s Coates to the rescue.


Household catastrophes are well-trodden ground in advertising, and the temptation is often to show homeowners in ‘panic mode’, before bringing the chaos to a halt with your brand.

Here, The Royals took a slightly different approach — and we respect that. The two lead characters (who recur across the different videos in the campaign) are tradies with a job to do, and they know they can rely on support from Coates Hire.

If the pipes burst on a British building site, we’d expect more F-bombs than a Samuel L. Jackson showreel — but these guys keep their stereotypically Aussie cool throughout (even when faced with a soggy ‘sanga’), and its their matter-of-fact, almost-nonchalant attitude that provides the humour.

This angle works wonders for conveying the brand message — we just wish it had been funnier. How? All together now…ESCALATION!

Now, it’s true that you don’t always have to take an idea to the extreme to get a laugh. But we’ve got a strong hunch that this ad’s comedy and messaging would’ve hit much harder if we’d seen these calm Aussies take on maintenance disasters of increasingly biblical proportions (why not roll out the VFX?) with little more than a shrug and a shout of ‘We needa…’