It’s been a few months since we’ve visited the old blind item section, so let’s dust it off, shall we? Spies are telling us it’s true that a full-service, NYC-based agency fired its entire tech team recently. From what we hear, this is the second time that this has occurred at said agency, though your guess is as good as ours as to which one it actually is. Fire away, people.
Ok folks, here’s our weekly mailbag and it’s time to play yet another guessing game. This is interesting.
“_____ agencies, mostly ___ and _____ [-based], are invited to pitch for _______. 3 weeks, time, travel and $$$$ invested by ____ agencies. here is the winner: “The business from the 2011 ___________ RFP event has been awarded to _________.”
Here’s a hint: It’s for digital biz and it’s not from NYC.
Two blind items in a week? Yep, two blind items in a week, and this one kinda merited it. We know, we know, this could almost apply to any agency, but seriously, we believe you can narrow it down. Have fun with more mad libs, folks. The person who sent us this apparently loves ellipsis as well.
“The _____ ____ is about to go under: IN an act of clemency, ________ promoted ______ and _________ to Co-Presidents of the group that has lost 75% of its staff in the last year. An exodus caused by a toxic work environment. The group has also lost ________, _____, _____ digital work and the rest of the account (media) is expected to go soon. _____ is on the edge, having just hired several agency folks and then shooting a TV spot without the shop…_____ is shopping around and the _________ [account] is rumored to be interested in working with ______ at _____….”
So, here we go again, revving up the old Blind Item category out of nowhere. A handful of tips within one week’s time from seemingly different sources makes us go hmmm (h/t C+C Music Factory). Anyhow, there’s this certain automaker and this certain agency which are having their difficulties. We’ve even been told that there might be an account review in the coming weeks. Here you go, gang, have at it with some Mad Libs:
“Big shakeup on the ______ business. CEO _______ has been moved off the brand pending results of the financial and accounting audit that the agency ________ is undergoing. CEO of the agency ________ is moving items of the agency building and UHaul trucks were there all weekend. Some very shady things were going on in the accounting and billing processes and ________ legal has jumped in.”
It’s been about three weeks, give or take, since the latest Summer’s Eve effort was pulled from the airwaves and Stan Richards, founder and namesake of the Richards Group, which was behind the brand’s “Hail to the V” campaign, had this to say to Adweek: “After listening to thousands of women say they want straight-talk and lighthearted communication on a historically-uncomfortable topic, Summer’s Eve gave us license to be bold, irreverent and celebratory across a multitude of mediums and to different audiences. We are surprised that some have found the online videos racially stereotypical.”
Well, if one tipster’s scoop is accurate, Richards Group shouldn’t have been so surprised considering that the campaign seemed doomed well before launch. Read on:
“Internally the ad is not talked about. The client never liked the ad and was basically talked into buying the idea by two untouchable CD’s at the agency. The ad was tested in focus groups and did terrible, and the client was again, pressured to run with it. The client did, and to absolutely terrible results. Granted it’s a difficult product, but for obvious reasons there has been a huge backlash to the campaign labeling it from sexist to racist and everything in between. [Because] of stupid shit like this, clients get scared and never want to take risks. Because after trusting irresponsible creatives, they get burned.”
We’re going to make this short and sweet but yesterday we were reached by a senior art director at a well-known ad agency who took issue with a project manager about a certain script. The end result? He/she was shown the door and was fired within 24 hours. We’ll give you a one vague hint: The agency is based in the Northeast. We will now let you roll the dice and take a guess.
Update: This story is getting stranger as we received a tip from someone claiming to be said art director who said they in fact did not contact us regarding this blind item. We’ll dig into this.
Time for you and I to play a Thursday guessing game as we’ve been trying to dig deeper info on a couple of tips received last night that said simply, “2 VPs gone from Huge.” Well, we received confirmation from the agency that a couple of senior folks who worked on the client services side and touched multiple accounts have indeed left the agency within the last week Since HUGE’s policy is not to comment specifically on individuals (see: Nick McGlynn), we guess it’s high time for a blind item.
If you have more info, give us a shout but we’ll keep digging around. In the meantime, HUGE sent us this quote that doesn’t really fill in the blanks, but if you like somewhat vague feedback, here you go:
“In the last six months or so we’ve added nearly a hundred people to the agency. The vast majority of people who come here stay, but it’s not exactly news in this industry that sometimes people move on for all sorts of reasons. Anyone who gets hired at HUGE has to be incredibly smart and out of respect for all our employees we don’t comment on the details when things don’t work out.”
We’re trying to post these blind items at a decent clip, but most of the time, the tips/emails don’t pan out…until now. Here’s something for you regarding a certain well-known agency where someone is allegedly faking the funk on a nasty dunk (to quote Shaq, circa 1992). Fill in the blanks as you will:
“_________ has recently allowed a new hire to report to work with his “service dog” although the dog isn’t registered as a service dog (HR never bothered to check!), the employee has no physical disability and the dog remains off leash and given free run of the agency (even insofar as going between floors alone via the intra-floor spiral staircases). Employees who voice any dissent are quickly silenced; obviously the offender is a senior executive.”
It’s been several hours and seemingly 1,000 days since we posted a blind item, but might as well celebrate mid-week by dusting this category off. Apparently, one much-hyped agency is in trouble. We’re looking into it, but you can draw you own conclusions from this seemingly worried tipster’s comments (and we’ve heard this before about this certain joint). Time to play Mad Libs:
“________ office of _________ (formerly ______) has no clients, and no work, and should be shutting down in the next month. Remaining staff told to go find jobs. A classic case of a horribly-run office, short-sighted strategy of execs, and incompetent ostrich’s-head-in-the-sand management. It didn’t have to be this way – classic mistakes were made.”
It has been a long while since we dusted the Blind Item section off, right? Pardon my redundant statement, but let’s cut all the pretense and bullshit and let’s get down with it Thanks as always, tipsters:
________ and _______ have left to follow [executive creative director] _______ to ______. There have been many creatives to leave ______ in the last year and a half. Many theorize that it has something to do with a certain ECD. But it could just be the endless all-nighters and weekends that are expected of employees there with little to no reward.