So which agency won the Super Bowl? I know, I know. Yesterday I said I wouldn't talk about it but, come on, this is Madison Avenue Daily. How can we bypass the biggest event of the year?
After all, you agency types need as many pats on the back as you can get! So who do I think won the Super Bowl? While I don't they created the best spot -- that honor goes to GSD&M for their
hilarious eighties homage for RadioShack -- I'm going to honor Anomaly which did great work for Budweiser with "Puppy Love" and Hero's Welcome." Yes, there were other good spots but Anomaly delivered
a worthy two-fer.
And while I'm congratulating agencies, we should all give a shout out to Grey, which was just named Agency of the Year in Advertising Age's Agency A-List which evaluates "agencies based on creativity, financial performance, and their ability to positively impact a client's business." Why the need for another list? Ad Age Associate Publisher Abbey Klaassen said, “At a time of major transition in the agency space, identifying the leaders among all agency disciplines has never been more important…It identifies for both marketers and agency peers the shops defining the future of the business and what the industry must do to survive: innovate, think creatively and become essential business partners to their clients.” She's got a point. It's a virtual cluster-f... uh...really messed up in the agency space these days and anything that lends clarity can only help. Rounding out the top 10 were Mullen, 360i, Droga5, Anomaly, 72andSunny, Weber Shandwick, 180LA, LatinWorks and R/GA.
Ever heard of Sorenson Advertising? Neither have I. They are based in St. George Utah and they had what they call "a different kind of Super Bowl party." How was it different? Ready? Wait for it? They watched the ads! They celebrated the ads, not the game! And they sent out a press release to share this radical move. OMG, this is, like, really bleeding edge! But sharing a modicum of normalcy (even though it sounds like agency PR wrote it), Sorenson Advertising Creative Director Colby Remund said, “This edition of Super Bowl ads, as in recent years has shown that simple concepts, solid narratives and straight forward execution that captures the audience and win out over weak strategies, smashing walls, and useless celebrity endorsements,. Too often these big money ads become a lost cause by trying so desperately hard to make fireworks. In the end they miss out on big opportunities to connect emotionally with their target audience.”
New York-based first-year MRY creative Sam Bartos has unveiled Ad Agency Bingo, a bingo game which
incorporates many of the activities, behaviors and plain old oddities he's witnessed during his first year at MRY.
Bingo squares include such activities as someone blatantly drinking before 2PM, somebody Tindering during a meeting, someone using the word "disruptive," somebody's dog pees in the office, someone says "advertorial," someone takes a selfie, someone you've slept with is in the same meeting as you and more.
In Sam's own words, here's how you sore the game:
“If you get a straight line, you can take it to your boss and ask that he promote you. Art Directors can become Senior Art Directors. Junior Copywriters will become Senior Junior Copywriters. etc.
If you get a diagonal line, you get to raid the office supply closet, Supermarket Sweep-style.
If your coworker gets a straight line, but you contributed by saying one of the things that helps them fill out one of the squares, you can scan their filled out sheet and put it in your portfolio as a project you worked on.
If you give the sheet to an intern to and they get a straight line, you can take credit for it as long as you write them a nice LinkedIn recommendation on their last day.
If you fill in a couple of the bubbles then get bored, fuck it, it’s 11:27. Lunch time.”
Oh, those damn new business prospects. Always asking for spec work for pitches. Will they ever learn? It's like asking a doctor to operate on your toe so he can prove he'll be successful operating
on your heart without even knowing the details of your health condition.
The HubSpot blog, Agency Post, asked 12 ad agency execs to spout off about spec work and what they think about the clients who request it.
Here's one of the better responses from Fuseideas' Dennis Franczak who said: "In written RFP responses, spec work is a waste of time. The reader may not have any context to what you are showing them. I also think when people ask it in an RFP they don’t understand how important developing creative is to us. It’s what we do. Asking us to just give it away means they already don’t respect you or what you do. To them, it’s like hiring somebody to provide them office supplies."
He continued: "For in-person presentations, it’s your chance to show them how you think or how you arrived at your creative approach. 95% of whatever gets done in a spec creative pitch is tossed out because you don’t have the background or the relationship with the client to know what they really need, but it shows how you think and it shows them you want their business."
What's your take on spec work?
Let's see. In the ever-growing list of overly self-important job titles, we've got Chief Development Officer (ie, sales director), Chief Creative Officer (ie, creative director), Chief Experience
Officer (ie, director of UX), Chief Digital Officer (ie, director of digital), Chief Content Officer (ie, editorial director), Chief Client Officer (ie, account director), Chief Native Officer (ie,
director of editorial spam), Chief Customer Officer (ie, director of customer service) and the list goes on.
There's also Chief Intelligence Officer, otherwise known as the director of research. But we can't shorten that title to CIO because a CIO is, and always has been, a Chief Information Officer. Or the guy you call when your computer breaks.
Smartly, IPG Mediabrands avoided this whole idiotic mess and called their new media research tech guy, Charles Godbold global director of media intelligence systems. All well and good -- but can we talk about Charles's last name for a minute? Isn't it the coolest? It just screams "I am the God of Awesome. I boldly go where no regular intelligence guy has gone before!"
Godbold is actually founder of Media Pilot Pty, a media consultancy and analytics firm. He will oversee the rollout of his firm's analytics software across all Mediabrands offices.
Title nonsense aside, IPG Mediabrands CEO Henry Tajer explained the hire, saying: “This is self-imposed discipline as opposed to client-appointed audits. Having the capability and the discipline in-house to redefine, remeasure and then reapply those insights is critical to how we’re going to be engaging with our client base moving forward. The ability for agencies to be responsive and operate in a real-time fashion with benchmarking is something the marketplace has largely been unable to do. Having it as part of our process and engineering it into how we operate means we’ll be doing it in real time. It’s accessible to the buying and client teams all the time as opposed to on a quarterly basis or a sporadic basis.”
In super important news today, 45-year-old Nick Swifte, who works at Dentsu Mitchell, says younger agency people don't drink enough. Swifte tells the Sydney Morning Herald: "If the beer and chips come
out at 4.30, by 5.30 all the kids under 30 are gone.” When we were starting out in our 20s if the office turned on booze you would literally sit around and drink until there was nothing left.
Now the younger staff might have one beer or not drink at all. They just don't seem to have the same alcohol focus as the era when I grew up."
Swifte, however, is a big fan of drinking himself, saying, "I like getting drunk. I'm a big fan of it. Working as a media buyer there is booze everywhere. Any function you go to, every achievement, every win, every loss, it's all celebrated with booze. There's as much of it as you want and it's all free."
While this may make Swifte just sound like a drunk old Mad Man, there does seem to be a trend, -- at least in Australia -- of younger generations simply eschewing alcohol more than older generations. According to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare's National Drug Strategy Household Survey, between 2004 and 2013, the number of 12- to-17-year-olds who do not drink rose from 54 percent to 72 percent while heavy drinking among 18- to-24-year-olds has dropped from 24 percent to 18 percent.
And while there certainly may be a drop in the drinking levels of those under 30 working in ad agencies, maybe Swifte is witnessing a drop because young folks are sick of listening to old advertising war stories while drinking a beer in the agency kitchen.
Anyway, I thought you should know this very important piece of news.