Fred & Farid, that deliciously witty agency in Paris, is out with a "case study" video about what really happened during the Publicis Omnicom merger and why it failed. It seems Fred
& Farid misled Maurice Levy and John Wren a bit so that when the two first met up to discuss the deal, both Maurice and John thought they were top dog. Naturally, a testosterone-fueled fight
ensued. But, there were funny pictures, and in the end, Sir Martin Sorrell came out smiling. And everyone loves a smiling Sir Martin Sorrell. Watch the video.
The Art Directors Club, which is doing its damnedest to get everyone to call it ADC, is out with Portfolio Cards, a partnership with Twitter that allows up-and-coming young creatives seeking the attention of creative directors worldwide to use Twitter Cards to highlight their portfolios. And to make sure everyone keeps talking about The Art...uh...ADC following the close of its Portfolio Night this week. They're calling it the TweetFolio. Cute. To make it work, budding creatives place four projects in a Portfolio Card using the Twitter Gallery Card, @PortfolioNight tweets the card, the tweet will be seen by those following @PortfolioNight and CDs can expand the tweet to check out the work.
Former Havas Worldwide New York Chief Digital Officer Alex Bombeck has landed at Sparks Grove, the marketing and creative division of North Highland. Bombeck will lead the Atlanta-based division, which provides marketing, visioning and visualization (whatever that is), emerging interactions, and communication services. Of his move, and his family's, to Atlanta for the gig, Bombeck said: "After almost 20 years in the marketing services industry, I have gained an appreciation for both the art and the science of brand relationships, communications frameworks and platform integration. I appreciate the uniqueness of the Sparks Grove business model, as well as North Highland's world-class advisory, strategy and execution expertise. I look forward to working alongside the accomplished team at Sparks Grove." Bombeck joins Sparks Grove as the agency saw 50% growth in revenue over the past two years, has grown to 80 staffers and is adding 5,000 square feet to its Atlanta office space.
Changes are afoot over at Ogilvy & Mather UK. Annette King has been promoted to Chief Executive Officer, succeeding Paul O’Donnell, who has been promoted to CEO of Ogilvy & Mather Europe, Africa and the Middle East. King will continue to lead OgilvyOne in the EAME region and will still report to O’Donnell who retains his role as Chairman of Ogilvy & Mather UK. Both will be based in London and take up their roles immediately. Of her new gig, King said, “I am incredibly excited to have the opportunity to run Ogilvy & Mather UK. I can't wait to start working with the teams across the group to take the business forward, building on the enormous growth of the last five years."
Lexington, Kentucky-based agency Meridian-Chiles has shut its doors and filed for bankruptcy. The agency owes $5.1 million in back payments to creditors. Half of that amount is owed to Central Bank. Larry Chiles and Jim Jordan founded the company, which was originally known as Jordan-Chiles, in 1988. Chiles bought Jordan out in 2006.
Recently, there's been increased debate surrounding the open office concept and its effect on productivity. Various articles and studies have pointed out that it may not be as productive a work
environment as old-school offices with walls and doors. Some posit that the concept fosters the creative spirit. Others posit that the concept fosters distraction and anxiety.
While many agencies have gone open concept, one is publicly proclaiming its love for the concept in an open letter published in Ad Age. Penned by SS+K Partner and Chief Creative Officer Bobby Hershfield, the letter reads like a "facts be damned" opinion piece which, truth be told, is perhaps all well and good. After all, what works for some, doesn't work for others.
In the letter, Hershfield thumbs his nose at stats highlighting the downside of the open office concept and touts the concept's benefits as he sees them. He writes: “We don't rely on email so much. We talk. Email follows up a conversation instead of initiating one, or even worse, substituting for one. We don't just share ideas. We wad them up and toss them at each other, blurt them out, interrupt and criticize and applaud them. We talk more. Walk around. Offer suggestions enroute to the bathroom. We don't hide in our offices. We don't hide behind walls. We are exposed and sometimes that fear puts pressure on us to be better in every aspect of our job."
He finishes, writing: "We are happier. We are less complacent. Less bored. We are stimulated. And we are getting to know one another better, which makes a culture that really is only about people and [making] ideas stronger."
There never will be an answer to this conundrum mostly because everyone has a different work style. Some love the thrill of constant interaction and lobbing ideas back and forth while eating their lunch and walking on their standing treadmill desk. Others love to cocoon themselves and let prior interactions gestate into well-formed ideas which are then shared to a larger group. To each their own, I guess.
David Murdico, creative director and managing partner of Supercool Creative Agency puts forth a solid argument as to why startups should pay agencies more than brands do for the same work.
First of all, he notes a startup is an unknown entity and no one has ever heard of it before making it all the more difficult to create the necessary marketing program to achieve awareness and sale. He notes startups are generally more demanding than established brand marketers, often times because so much is at stake.
Perhaps the biggest problem area when it comes to crafting marketing for a startup is that up until the point the startup reached out to an agency, everything about the startup has, thus far, operated in an echo chamber with scant few nodding and bobbing their heads in agreement without truly vetting the idea or how the idea will be perceived in the real world.
Another challenge when working with a startup? They tend to change their mind a lot about, well, everything. And that can be a gigantic time suck. Check out Murdico's entire list here and file it away in your back pocket for use the next time you consider working with a startup.
This is gold! Gold, I tell you! And it's arrived just in time. As we all mourn the loss of our beloved Mad Men characters, they have been given renewed life, in the form of a Tumblr blog, as
digital natives spewing all the usual buzzword bingo that's so prevalent in today's marketing landscape.
Taking on the form of animated gifs, we have Don informing his secretary: "The future of advertising is socially integrated digital platforms." We have Peggy commending a co-worker saying: "Nice branded social post, bro." We have Don asking Peggy: "But does it work as a pre-roll." We have Don reacting to a proposed "Tinder-powered drone." We have Pete telling Don: "The CTRs need optimizing for behavioral targeting of Millennials."
And on and on and on. Brilliance.
Oh for f*ck's sake! Stop. Just please stop! Every ridiculous addition to the CxO title space just dumbs down the importance of the core four: CEO, CFO, COO and CIO. Maybe you can add CMO and CCO to
that list -- but chief data officer? Chief customer officer? And now...wait for it...chief native officer?
Yeah. Chief native officer. Or at least that's what Forbes Contributor Daniel Newman would like to see instituted. Newman argues that the merging of paid and earned media requires this CxO style oversight.
He furthers his point, writing: "The biggest reason to get a Native Officer is that while digital agencies and publishers work together, they don’t necessarily do so as a team. In fact, there are instances where they don’t see eye to eye. While publishers are great at creating content, they can treat branded content like a 'second-class citizen.' On the other hand, digital agencies consider themselves star content creators for brands. In such circumstances, there’s a pressing need for a 'dedicated task force' to exploit native ads to their fullest potential. The CNO should lead this pack, guiding the brand towards rewarding native advertising campaigns and best practices."
So what say you? Do we need the chief native officer?
Sort of like food brands still pimping low fat/no fat products when studies clearly indicate the human body needs fat, the office management world is still pimping open office space when many studies have shown it's a less productive solution than
more traditional office space.
That's not stopping the latest trend in office space, the Superwide. Superwide office space is large, one floor office space consisting of 100,000 square feet or more. Of the trend, Brookfield Property Partners Senior VP Duncan McCuaig said: “Large floors are absolutely in demand.” And “right now there is very little of this product in the city,” he added, referring to Manhattan.
Adam Kansler, managing director at financial data company Markit, loves the open office concept and says: “There’s something that gets lost” when a company is on multiple floors. You don’t get the same random moments of seeing someone from across the way, hearing that they’re working on a project, and saying, ‘Oh, I’m going to stop by.’ ”