Ad Man Opens Haunted House Bed and Breakfast

There are a lot of things ad professionals do when they go down the elevator at night, but they usually don't involve things that go, well, bump in the night. But that's exactly what Bil Bungay, founder of UK agency BMB, did when he bought a famous haunted house and turned it into a bed and breakfast. Bungay purchased the house used to film the British poltergeist movie, “When the Lights Went Out,” and turned it into a B&B. The house is said to be the site of one of the UK's most violent hauntings with such occurrences a "small room trashed by Fred" and the "shadow of a man walks from kitchen into neighbor's house." The Web site for the B&B urges people to stay -- if they dare.

In another chilling warning to ad agencies, WSJ CMO Today scribe Suzanne Vranica pens a piece about the ever up-swinging trend of media companies forming their own in-house agencies, which are stealing business from traditional agencies. Pandora, Screenvision, Forbes and The Wall Street Journal itself, have formed in-house operations to serve the changing needs of brands. Native advertising and content marketing have played a major role in this shift. The skill set required to create this particular form of advertising appears to better match with the skill sets of media companies than with ad agencies. 

Publicis Groupe has acquired Cybermedia, the parent company of Proximedia, a Web services provider for small/medium businesses in Belgium and the Netherlands. The agency has 380 employees and 25,000 clients. Publicis, which also has its own small/medium business focused digital division, Webformance, aims to capitalize off the 25 million small businesses in the European Union that are in the process of "going digital."

Even helicopter companies need ad agencies. Denver-based Agency Zero has been selected as the advertising agency of record for Sundance Helicopters, a helicopter tour company based in Las Vegas, Nevada. “Las Vegas itself is an amazing sight, however many people don’t realize the close proximity of these natural wonders and the perspective-changing feelings that Sundance’s adventures evoke,” stated Jeremy Irwin, Agency Zero Partner/CCO. “We want the unforgettable experience of the tours to translate through every point of contact, from Sundance’s Web site, to a strong local presence in Vegas, to global digital display work.”

Global Chief Executive Officer of Starcom MediaVest Group Laura Desmond has been named Chair of the Board of Directors of the Advertising Council. She succeeds Debra L. Lee, chairman and chief executive officer of BET Networks. David Kenny, chief executive officer of The Weather Company, has been announced as vice chair of media, joining vice chair of advertisers, David Christopher, CMO of AT&T Mobility. Desmond will be Board Chair through June 2015 when she will be succeeded by  Christopher. Of the selection, Ad Council President and CEO Peggy Conlon said, "We are thrilled to announce Laura's leadership on our Board. Laura is one of this country's most respected leaders in the media and advertising communities, and her business acumen, marketing expertise and outstanding leadership will be instrumental to furthering our mission and the goals of our campaigns."
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