This Week Ad Industry Interns Had A Party...And Pimped Dogs on Tinder

Looks like Wednesday night was the time to be an intern in the advertising and media business. Horizon Media hosted the industry's first intern reception at its New York headquarters. The Media and Advertising Intern Reception was created in partnership with MyersBizNet, a community of more than 200 corporate members. The event gathered more than 300 summer interns from across various media agencies, creative agencies, television networks, media sales and other ad industry workplaces. Of the event, Horizon Media Chief Talent Officer (didn't these people just used to be called HR Directors?) Eileen Benwitt said: "Every summer, carefully selected future rising stars join our industry's highly competitive internships. We want to roll out the red carpet for the leaders of tomorrow, and to give young talent the chance to network with peers and seasoned executives early in their careers." 

Speaking of interns, several at Bartle Bogle Hegerty created Tinder profiles for 10 "single" dogs from New York animal rescue league Social Tees to help hook them up with homes. The work was part of the agency's Barn Program, which encourages social good. So far, three of the dogs have hooked up but adoptions are not yet finalized. Of the project, BBH intern Alexis Mood said: “The dogs have love to give, and people on Tinder are looking for love anyway. It seemed like the perfect setup.” Hmm -- not sure this is the best use of Tinder. After all, dogs want permanent homes, not one-night booty calls.

LA-based David & Goliath has upped its game with three new hires. Joining the agency are former Leo Burnett and Saatchi LA Creative Director Dino Spadavecchia who will be Group Creative Director. Also joining are longtime creative partners Chris Hutchinson and Driscoll Reid who join the agency from TBWA\Chiat\Day where they were both associate creative directors. All three will focus their energies on the California Lottery, Kia and Vizio.

Who knew there'd be an opportunity for an agencyto focus on helping advertisers partner with YouTube sensations? Well, as the agency business crumbles, the smart ones are doing all they can to stay alive. Four digital media guys -- three from Saatchi & Saatchi and one from Maker Studios -- have launched Mozaic Branding. The company will act as a broker of sorts between marketers and YouTube creators to facilitate branded entertainment deals. The company's founders are Fran Solomita, who will be CEO; Peter Bray; Mike Bienstock; and Todd Grossman. Of the company's formation, Bray said, “These deals need shepherds…They need someone to make the deal important and someone who understands the pace. You’re not hiring actors to say words. You’re hiring influencers and their audiences.”

Update: An earlier Version of this column suggested interns were drinking at a major networking gathering in New York sponsored by Horizon Media and MyersBizNet. In fact, no alcohol was served at the event. 

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  • 5 Things You Absolutely, Positively Must Know This Holiday Week

    So it's the week between Christmas and New Year's -- and we all know what that means for the advertising agency business. Nothing. Yes, nothing. Why? Because nothing happens during this holiday week. Why? Because everyone save for a few lowly creatives and AAE's have left the building for fancy vacations, leaving the underlings to wander the halls, fool around on Facebook, check Tinder, Snapchat themselves from the bathroom stall and seek project approvals they will never receive because, well -- everyone who can approve anything is out of the office. And no, the internet and the smartphone haven't changed this two-week slowdown one bit.

    Which is why those of us who never have a day off (read Mediapsssst columnists -- or basically, any online journalist pumping out content for the daily grind) are left serving up space filler news items like "Five Advertising Execs to Watch in 2015" from CMO Today.

    Crafting an article that could have been written anytime in the last four months and just banked for publication during the holidays (as opposed to this useless rehash I write for you with love the Sunday following Christmas), CMO Today's Nathalie Tadena serves up the usual suspects; Interpublic CEO Michael Roth, Starcom MediaVest Group Global CEO Laura Desmond, TBWA Worldwide CEO Troy Ruhanen, Havas CEO Yannick Bollore and Xaxis Global CEO Brian Lesser. So if you're bored and have nothing to do, give it a read.

  • 5 Questions to Ask When Seeking A Social Media Agency

    Ssshhh, marketers. Don't tell your ad agency that they just might not be up to snuff when it comes to handling your social media efforts. Now, yes, some agencies are perfectly well equipped and should by all means be considered for the task at hand. But as we all know, if there's one thing an ad agency can do really well, it's promise the moon and then figure out how to deliver after the fact. And that’s really that last sort of thing you want when looking for a partner to craft and help you manage what can be a very challenging and volatile endeavor.

    Over at Business 2 Community, Carly Cunningham has put together a 5-point tip sheet with questions you should ask when hiring an agency to help handle your social media needs. Tips and questions range from close consideration of the process the agency uses for content creation to measurement of progress and success to the agency's viewpoint on social platforms that are appropriate to your brand.

    While the list is brief and far from complete, it will put you in the right mindset and send you in the right direction when you're deciding who to hire for your social media needs. Here's another resource to consider. And here's another. But if you ask me, it all boils down to one simple tenet: don't send stupid tweets.

  • Geary LSF Highlights Omni-Channel Approach to Marketing With New Web site

    Well, it's almost the New Year -- and so that means it's time for a new Web site, right? Seems that's what Geary LSF has been thinking. The agency just launched a new one. But wait, before you yawn and fall asleep over this non-news of yet another ad agency launching yet another new Web site, read on.

    For its site relaunch, the agency has chosen to focus on something very interesting. And something most agencies haven't yet chosen to focus on. So what's this new, new thing? Omni-channel marketing, that's what. Some of you are like, "Wait, what? What's omni-channel marketing?"

    Put simply, omni-channel marketing is the practice of ensuring the customer experience is exactly the same whenever and wherever they come into contact with the brand. Oh and it's way more than just making print ads look like TV ads and billboards look like Web sites. Oh, no. It's much, much more. It involves mobile, in-store, eCommerce and more. Basically, omni-channel marketing aims to ensure that not only is the experience the same no matter which channel the customer chooses to experience the brand but also that the integration and hand-off between those channels is entirely seamless.

    And so, Geary LSF has chosen to highlight that approach to marketing and has made omni-channel the focus of its new Web site. Check it out.
  • Agency Searches For Santa With Elaborate Victorian-Era Expedition

    With its holiday card effort, Indiana-based Miller Brooks has embarked upon an exploration and the discovery of hidden truths. The agency began by recruiting mission participants via a display ad patterned closely after Ernest Shackleton’s famous advertisement of 1914 which sought crewmen for the Trans-Antarctic Expedition. The ads appeared in the classified sections of local publications.

    The agency next mailed clients and prospective clients a pseudo-Victorian map of the North Pole wrapped around a signed holiday greeting that did double duty as a teaser postcard by showing a photo of a Santa-esque figure posing with a ship’s crew, and directing readers to TheExpeditionNorth.com for further information. All the materials came enclosed in an envelope that displayed an ornate, period-appropriate return address stamp, along with vintage postage stamps, which in turn were selected to show scenes of ocean exploration.

    Additional recipients were alerted to the mission and its Web site through a series of email messages -- one that echoed the print ad and included era-appropriate advertisements for several of Miller Brooks’ clients and a second communication that announced the mission’s launch on the front page of an invented Victorian newspaper, the Voyager’s Weekly: A Graphic Compendium of Travelogues.

    When visitors arrive at TheExpeditionNorth.com, they are greeted by a summary of the voyage’s purpose, as well as a biography of the mission’s leader and a description of the Miller Brooks Society for Exploratory Illumination. A multi-part captain’s journal tells the story of the mission’s launch, travails, and eventual triumph in period-appropriate language accompanied by photoshopped images.

  • Saatchi LA Asks Us All to Unplug For The Holidays

    Saatchi LA is taking a new approach to the ad industry holiday card and has set out to raise something money can’t buy. The agency is asking people to hang up the phone during dinner, close laptops during family movies, unplug from social networks and plug into positive interactions with family to spend meaningful time with loved ones during this holiday season through its, Holidays Unplugged initiative.

    Here's how it works. The holiday e-card invites people to join the fundraiser here. Users pledge to unplug in hourly increments and for every hour pledged, Saatchi LA will donate $1, up to $10,000, to the Hollywood Community Housing Corporation in partnership with Adopt a Family.

    The program will remain open through January 4, and people can track the progress toward the 10,000-hour goal, make comments and share images and videos. The agency has drafted rotating copy for an automatically generated tweet/facebook post for when people pledge.

  • This Agency Gives You A Break From Your Facebook Feed's Vitriolic Outrage

    It's always a good thing to help the kids. Especially kids in need. And even more especially, kids who have limited access to creative endeavors. Throughout the year, brand strategy and design firm Lippincott partners with Creative Art Works, a New York-based non-profit organization dedicated to empowering kids through creativity and bringing arts education to schools that have lost it.

    Lippincott’s 2014 "holiday card" celebrates the efforts the agency goes to throughout the year to help kids explore their creativity. So in a time when your Facebook feed is filled with an overflowing abundance of vitriolic outrage, you can take solace in the fact that there are still fleeting moments of heartwarming goodness in this world. I certainly wish there were more.

  • Grey New York Sticks Annoying Millennials In Their Own Private Playpen

    Oh, this is rich. Ever since the 88 million Millennials started swarming the office world, freaked out GenX and Baby Boomer managers have tried just about everything to better meld with these stereotypically self-entitled, hierarchy-agnostic, trophy-for-participation 20-somethings. Well, it seems Grey New York has found the answer.

    What's Grey's solution? They rounded up all the whiners...uh...Millennials and gave them their own playpen. No, seriously. A while back, the agency moved all its assistant account executives into one area of the office, effectively segregating them from their managers. Why? So they'll grow up and think before they speak. And that comes right from the mouth of a Millennial!

    Of the segregated office space, called Base Camp, Grey AAE Sean McNamara said, “Since I’m not sitting in front of my supervisor, I’m not able to just turn around and say, ‘Hey, this is what I think.’ It makes you think: When does this call for me to go over and talk about things, and when will an e-mail suffice?” That's right. Apparently, Millennials must be physically separated from their bosses to rescue management from an incessant stream of mindless, ill-thought-through banter.

  • Leo Burnett Eschews Holiday Silliness With Meaningful Toy Drive For Chicago Children

    It's nonstop charity action this year with ad agency holiday cards. It's as if every agency in the land is finally hanging their head in shame for the decades of trite, meaningless holiday silliness they've foisted upon us for far too long. Nice to see things changing.

    Leo Burnett Chicago is out with a program that makes donating gifts to children at Off The Street Club as easy as tweeting a photo. "Gift of Giving 2014" allows people to donate by snapping a Twitter or Instagram photo of the gift and tagging it with #GiftOfGiving2014.

    That gift image will appear on digital display gift boxes under an actual Christmas tree at Off The Street Club in Chicago's West Garfield Park neighborhood and virtually at TheGiftOfGiving.co where one can search for it using one's screen name. Once found, people can download a prepaid postage label to ship that gift directly to Off The Street Club at no cost. Now isn't that much nicer that some silly video?

  • DigitasLBi Quiz Determines Your Ugly Holiday Sweater Preferences

    You know that holiday sweater? The silly one that the office doofus insists upon wearing every year? Yeah, that sweater. Well, now you can have one of your very own too. And all you have to do is take this Ugly Sweater quiz that DigitasLBi put together.

    So head over to the agency's sweater-ific quiz site and answer a few questions such as your preference in Blizzard Survival apps, wearables, holiday party bites and what you plan to watch come 2015. You'll then be presented with a "hand-sewn" customized sweater that may or may not end up being called The Bun Toaster. And after you have taken the quiz, the agency will make a donation to Goodwill in an effort to keep everyone warm this year.

    As you take the quiz, a very nice lady -- likely some agency person's grandmother -- furiously works on creating a masterpiece of personalized wonderment. Now if only the sweaters were real.

  • Boston Agency Asks Santa What He Wants For Christmas

    Boston-based Captains of Industry is asking us all to turn the tables a bit on the whole Santa Claus thing. After all, year after year after year, the poor guy has to do all the giving. What if we asked Santa what he wanted for Christmas? Well, that's exactly what Captains did.

    So, what does Santa want? The agency hit the streets of Boston to find out. And here's what they found: a slap chop, a reduction of parking fees for reindeer, bigger candy canes, a satellite radio for the sleigh, a few days off for Mrs. Claus, a little less turmoil in the world for a couple of weeks, more happiness, help for drug addicted family members.

    The video ends with a simple reminder: "This holiday season, let's remember there's a man behind the beard.”

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