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Wednesday Odds and Ends

-Halle Berry promotes her fragrance line, Wild Essence, in new ad (video above). link

-McCann’s Rob Reilly to DigiDay: “I don’t claim to be incredibly smart, but I certainly outwork people.” link

-Chicago-based design-driven production company Sarofsky Corp announced the addition of Steven Anderson as executive producer. link

-H&M chooses Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga for winter campaign. link

-Dentsu Aegis Network announced that Aegis Lifestyle, Inc. has acquired New York-based full-service lifestyle marketing agency MKTG, Inc.

-RealMassive named Craig Negoescu as the company’s first vice president of creative and design, in order to “further merge user needs, business vision and technical requirements into the architecture and design of the RealMassive search platform and application.” link

-Traditional publishers are better at reaching millenials than you might think. link

-Independent Austin-based agency T3 today announced the addition of Hawk Thompson as content strategy director and Oscar Llarena as head of its new user experience department.

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Porsche Adds Solve to Agency Roster

porschePorsche added Minneapolis-based agency Solve to its agency roster, where it will join Cramer-Krasselt and OMG in representing the brand, which spent over $40 million in media last year. The agency also works on fellow Volkswagen brand Bentley.

Solve will focus on “revamping the brand experience, working to make it more intimate and engaging,” Solve CEO John Colasanti explained to Adweek. The decision follows a review that included nearly 15 agencies, narrowed down to four for the final.

“What really impressed us about [Solve] is their knowledge of enthusiast brands,” Scott Baker, manager of marketing communications for Porsche, told Adweek. “The fact that we’re both part of VW family is what made it OK and, actually, it played to their strengths.”

i.d.e.a. Signs Canadian Vet to Lead Creative

daniel_fullToday San Diego’s i.d.e.a. — one of the fully-integrated agencies you’ll be seeing more and more of in coming years — announced plans to shore up its ad creative team by hiring Daniel Andreani as SVP/ECD.

While Andreani has an extensive history in the agency world, he spent much of his previous 20 years in the field working for Canadian shops.

Before joining his most recent employer MDC in New Mexico, Andreani spent two years as SVP/CD at BBDO’s Montreal office, producing work for clients like Campbell’s, Pepsi and Chrysler. Prior to that job, he spent nearly seven years as a partner/CD and art director at Sid Lee; previous employers include TAXI Toronto.

The press release notes that the hire follows i.d.e.a.’s acquisition of 4120, a production studio responsible for campaigns by IKEA, BMW and The San Diego Chargers (among others).

Campaigns to come.

McCann Compares Internet to Escalators for Verizon

McCann, New York has a new campaign for Verizon FiOS, touting the brand’s “Speed Match” — matching download and upload speeds.

To do so, McCann set up an experiment slowing down an up escalator. When riders finally reached the top, a spokeswoman asks, “Shouldn’t up be as fast as down?” and then continues to make the point that the same should true of Internet connection speeds. It’s a pretty obvious visualization of the feature, and may help those who have trouble understanding tech issues appreciate FiOS’ “Speed Match” (even if they still don’t quite understand what they’re talking about). Read more

KBS+ Takes Bissell to the Subway in Gross Spot

KBS+, Toronto have a new campaign for Bissell that gets a little gross. In the spot, promoting the Bissell Symphony, which vacuums and cleans hardwood simulateneously, Bissell Canada Senior Brand Manager Ravi Dalchand sets out to prove that he’s behind the product one hundred percent.

So he uses the Symphony to clean a subway floor and then takes things a giant step forward in the gross department and eats some saucy pasta right off the spot he cleaned, seemingly to the disgust of fellow subway passengers.

“Instead of just showing how it works at home, we felt the stronger message was to show how well it could clean, even in an extremely tough, dirty, messy situation,” Bissell Vice President General Manager Craig Emmerson told The Huffington Post.

As that publication points out, however, this was not a normal Toronto subway stop. The stop used was the Bay Lower Station, which TTC CEO Andy Byford said had been “closed off to the public six months after opening in 1966 due to passenger confusion and consistent delays.” It’s now mainly used as a set for movies and television. So while eating off of subway tile is still pretty gross, it’s not as disgusting as it originally appears. And those onlookers are almost definitely actors. But KBS+, Toronto and Bissell assume (probably correctly) that most people won’t reach that conclusion, and, staged or not, the gimmick is pretty memorable. Read more

North American President Leaving Havas for Indie BDD

joy schwartsThis morning AdAge ran a story confirming the eminent departure of Joy Schwartz, who most recently held the position of president of performance marketing, Havas Worldwide Chicago.

According to our tipsters, this came as news to those who work(ed) for her.

Schwartz, who spent more than twelve years with Havas, will run the just-announced Chicago office of BDD or Barrie D’Rozario DiLorenzo (formerly Barrie D’Rozario Murphy), starting next week. As the piece notes, the Minneapolis-based agency has expanded its executive team in recent months, hiring president and partner Kevin DiLorenzo from OLSON and opening a San Francisco office while preparing to set up shop in New York as well.

Our tips specifically claim that staffers received no announcement regarding Schartz’s departure — and that they learned of the news first thing this morning via the AdAge piece itself.

Contacts did not respond to AdAge or this blog, but other sources (who apparently know more than those who contacted us) told the magazine that the agency has begun searching for Schwartz’s replacement. She assumed the role of president in May after serving as co-president since 2009.

Updates as we receive them.

Translation Goes Back to School for Champs Sports

Translation has a new back-to-school campaign for Champ Sports, entitled “Game Loves An Audience.”

That phrase appears on screen, leading in to the brand’s “We Know Game” tagline following short vignettes in several 30-second spots. For the most part, Translation keeps things pretty simple. “Practice,” for example, is a montage of players training for the upcoming season at football practice, ending with the coach riling the team up with a chant. “Joy Ride” and “First Period” (which we’ve included after the jump) are similarly straightforward (and self-explanatory) eschewing any dialogue for a focus on Champs Sports’ products. You have to wonder if maybe they could have benefited from a little more substance, though. Read more

BBDO Wants to Get You in the Kitchen for Uncle Ben’s

Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO has a new UK campaign for Uncle Ben’s, called “Ben’s Beginners,” based on the insight that one in four parents never cook with their children.

In a two minute spot — entitled “Where’s The Kitchen” — a supposed real estate agent shows families a house without a kitchen. Invariably, the families notice and complain, to which he replies that people aren’t really cooking anymore and kitchen-less houses are the wave of the future. It’s a bit of an odd way to illustrate how people are cooking less, but lets the brand avoid seeming overly preachy. Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO probably could have made the point in less time however, as the two-minute format really stretches the premise thin.

Another part of the campaign will see Uncle Ben’s launching a YouTube cooking channel. Designed to encourage parents to cook with their children, the show is hosted by DJ BBQ shows kids how to cook simple meals using Uncle Ben’s products. It’s a nice extension of the campaign, and could foster some real brand loyalty in kids who learn to cook with the program. Additional videos will feature actress and celebrity chef Lisa Faulkner teaching basic cooking skills. Read more

Wednesday Morning Stir

-This new Life Alert ad is pretty disturbing (video above). link

-The cast of Toy Story reunited (again) for a new Sky Broadband television spot by WCRS. link

-Guitar Center has awarded the Los Angeles office of Starcom media duties, following a review. link

-Design studio Intridea advertised directly to Ogilvy with a billboard across the street from the agency. link

-Here are some creative agency side projects. link

-Apple’s Beats acquisition causes R/GA to open conflict shop in Los Angeles. link

-Grey London ECD Nils Leonard, and William Fowler, creative director at Headspace and Creative Review columnist discuss whether advertising can really do good. link

-WPP transitions to audience buying model. link

-R/GA Stockholm launches Volvo Next Generation Digital Experience. link

Jack Link’s Takes Sasquatch to College

How do we know that Jack Link’s wants to connect with the college crowd? The Big Ten Conference theme behind the brand’s latest campaign “The Wildest Room on Campus” gave us a big hint.

Some context before we dive back in: Carmichael Lynch, the agency behind the Sasquatch concept, retains creative AOR duties for Jack Link’s. Yet CL is not responsible for this campaign, and the brand’s last ads starred real animals.

Still…like that famed DDB bunny, this creature keeps going thanks to the work of production company Über Content.

Read more

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