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.
Did you know that Fort Lauderdale-based Zimmerman Advertising is one of the nation's leading retail agencies? Well that's what the press release said so it must be true. And guess what else? The agency has been hired by the world's fastest-growing sports nutrition company to grow even faster! Yes, it's true! The press release said so!
The agency will take on the $15 million account for BPI Sports, a sports nutrition company.
Of selecting Zimmerman to handle its business, BPI Sports Co-Founder and EVP James Grage said, "Hiring an ad agency is a key ingredient to significantly grow our business, establish BPI Sports as the premier sports nutrition brand, and position our company as an iconic, multi-channel business. Most agencies are full of smoke and mirrors and don't deliver on what they promise. It was refreshing to finally find one who's as good at making ads as they are at making money for their clients. I have no doubt Zimmerman will generate powerful results for BPI."
Clearly, BPI Sports believes it has selected the right agency for its business. The agency is on a roll having also just won American Media, a health and fitness publisher.
Press releases. They make you yawn. These committee-written documents are stuffed with silly platitudes aimed to placate marketing directors who still believe journalists want to read stuff that looks like it was written by a robot.
And so I'd like to give a big shout out to New York-based Catch which issued a hilarious gem of a release touting the fact they "may have been retained by the legendary brand Vans to develop an extremely confidential project, which may or may not be released this year."
The release goes on to quote an un-named (of course) Vans spokesperson who said, "We can neither confirm nor deny that Vans has retained Catch New York. All we are willing to say is that they seem pretty cool and creative and if we were going to hire an agency to help us launch something really awesome, we would hire Catch. But that's all we'll say."On the agency side, Catch ECD Marco Cignini said, "We're thrilled, excited, honored and humbled to be a part of the team that might be creating something amazing for Vans.”
Last week I made note of Alex Bogusky launching a start-up that that would focus on doing social good and that it would be called Spiffly. The first part was right. The second part was wrong. The
new entity will be called Fearless and "will help socially-minded corporations, foundations and non-profits develop 360° campaigns while providing the added value of a built-in millennial audience
through Fusion's television, social and digital platforms."
Fearless will be a division of Disney/ABC/Univision's cable network and digital platform Fusion and run in partnership with Bogusky, former CP+B'ers Dagny Scott and Lelsie Freeman. Fearless will "enable clients to engage with an ultra-connected audience in all of the places they consume media. The agency will develop multi-platform content spanning video, art, text, comedy, documentaries, television, events, and sharable content, all with an eye toward raising awareness and moving millennials to action on key issues and ideas that encourage positive change in the world."
Of the launch, Bogusky said, "Mashing up agency and media solves a huge problem for socially-minded clients who have incredibly compelling messages but no way to find their audience. Fusion is striking the right tone. Although millennials are more interested in doing good, they aren’t motivated by the same old dry boring, righteous approach. They have the attitude that changing the world can and needs to be fun. And I happen to agree with that.”
Fusion will be opening an office in Boulder, Colorado where Fearless will be based.
Are you going to SXSW? Do you want a new job? Then, it appears, you might want to hook up with Saatchi & Saatchi, which is opening up a Dallas office and will be trolling the streets of Austin
during SXSW for new hires.
The new office is for the agency's Team One unit, which focuses specifically on the Toyota and Lexus accounts. The agency's move to Texas is in reaction to Toyota moving its U.S. sales and marketing operations to Plano, Texas.
And so between barbecue and overcrowded sessions, head over to the SXSW Job Market at the JW Marriott (Floor 2). The hours are Friday, March 13 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday, March 14 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
While every morning she's grateful her clients haven't become part of some social media disaster and Twitter is her go to outlet for news, Huge (no, she isn't huge -- that's the name of the agency)
Director of Earned Media Alyssa Galella says that if she weren't working at Huge, she'd love to be "a detective. Or work in an animal shelter. I would basically be Ace Ventura, Pet Detective."
That's an interesting goal for a woman who was recently named one of PR Week's Innovation 50 or who accomplished a killer social media stunt by sending 99 boxes of Cap'N Crunch cereal to Jay-Z who later mentioned the stunt on the radio. Of course, yes -- she's just kidding, but Ace Ventura who certainly was a character. And I like people who aspire to be interesting characters.
But what's most interesting about Galella, who is far from being an old timer, is her wise view of social media today. She says, "There's no longer a dividing line between 'media' and 'social media.' You need to be fluent in both traditional media relations and social media to do your job most effectively. Most of what I've learned hasn't been on the clock, either -- take the initiative to read a ton, be active on social media, attend events, and take classes you're interested in." You know -- become educated in the ways of life.
Thank God. Someone who doesn't think Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat are the only valid forms of media in existence.