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The Martin Agency

The Martin Agency Brings Fenway Home for Benjamin Moore

Even if you hate the Red Sox (as an Orioles fan,I naturally fall into this category), you have to admit that Boston has one hell of a ballpark. Perhaps the most iconic aspect of Fenway is the huge wall in left field known as the Green Monster, which Benjamin Moore imbues with its distinct hue. The Martin Agency is letting fans know that Benjamin Moore is now letting fans take the color home, as part of “The Fenway Collection” in a new campaign.

In a 30-second spot, The Martin Agency shows fans turn a living room wall, fire hydrant, satellite dish, garage door and a playground into their own version of the baseball landmark. Set to the tune of “Dirty Water” by The Standells, the spot lets the color speak for itself, eschewing any dialogue to show the paint used in a variety of inventive ways. As part of the campaign, Benjamin Moore will also be using the paint collection to renovate youth baseball fields. The Martin Agency helped document this in “Bring the Green Monster to Local Fields,” which we’ve included, along with credits, after the jump. Read more

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The Martin Agency Brings Back Jordan for Hanes

Michael Jordan is back (this time, thankfully, sans Hitler mustache) for Hanes in a new spot by The Martin Agency.

The 30-second spot is Jordan’s first appearance in a Hanes television commercial since 2010, and also marks his 25th year as Hanes spokesperson. In the spot, entitled, “Golf Test,” Jordan mocks his partner’s truly awful golf game. “Golf Test” promotes Hanes’ X-Temp t-shirts and briefs, which “speeds evaporation to help keep you cool and dry,” preventing such conditions as swamp ass, marsh balls, raw taint and pit stains. The spot handles the “bad golf” approach well enough, although by now it’s become a routine schtick in ads and feels a bit tired. Still, all anyone will talk about is the return of Jordan, and it’s good to see him back.

The campaign also features a digital video series created by agency 360i that features Vine-sensation Logan Paul traveling around the country attempting dares (supposedly) proposed by fans. We’ve included the teaser for that initiative, along with credits, after the jump. Read more

The Martin Agency Introduces ‘The Hopsons’ for Benjamin Moore

The Martin Agency would like you to “Meet the Hopsons,” a family who live in a giant bouncy house.

The Hopsons fell in love with their neighborhood but, since all the houses have vinyl siding, they assumed they couldn’t paint theirs. Since they love color, this was a problem. The Hopsons came up with an unusual solution and decided to live in a giant bouncy house. And so begin the whacky adventures of “Meet the Hopsons.” At over two minutes the premise, which might have made for a fun 30-second spot, feels stretched far too thin, and it’s not until the last 30 seconds or so that the idea is tied to Benjamin Moore’s Revive paint for vinyl siding. Still, “Meet the Hopsons” is not entirely without some degree of quirky charm. It’s just hard to believe anyone would stick around long enough to see Benjamin Moore’s product presented as the solution. Stick around for credits after the jump. Read more

The Martin Agency Goes Across the Pond

geico-camel

Richmond, Va.-based The Martin Agency has been cashing in with a certain talking camel for an insurance company lately. It seems they finally earned enough money to save up for a big move — to London.

UK’s Campaign reports that the 49-year-old agency has long had its sights set overseas:

Matt Williams, the chief executive of the US agency, said London has been “a goal for us for some time”.

Initial interviews to fill the ECD and MD roles are underway, and the agency hopes to have 10 to 15 people in the London office by the end of the summer.

In a statement, Martin CCO Joe Alexander described the city as “one of the world’s great creative markets,” noting the exceptional craftsmanship behind the ads produced there.

“It’s something we’ve always prided ourselves on, as well,” Alexander said. “But the proof will be in the size of our ideas and the quality of the execution. Those are the only things that matter.”

Here’s a Promo for the ‘Martin Agency Kitchen’ We’ve Been Hearing Plenty About

We’re not sure why the multiple tipsters who have hit us up about this since late last week are already giving high praise (filled with many exclamation points) to a program that has yet to even start. But whatever the case, now someone from the Spy line was nice enough to send the above video that perhaps gives us more insight into the Martin Agency Kitchen, which is the Richmond, VA agency’s brand new internship program. There’s not a whole lot of detail to go on at this point as we’ve been told that Martin is currently accepting applications for January but everything’s still in the early stages. For now, you can revel in the brief promo above as well as the hyped-up Kitchen Pitch below:

“Combine 15 overachieving prodigies from the worlds of art, copy, design, film, digital and business, give ‘em actual real-world assignments and you get The Martin Agency Kitchen. No, we won’t bore you with culinary-puns and hackneyed cooking metaphors. Although that would be kinda fun.

We’re here to throw down the gauntlet and ask you if you’re up for the challenge to blow people’s minds with the kickassest of kickass work EVER CREATED.

So are you ready to bring the pain for three months and come home with three completed projects like: a killer music video, new business, branded apps, art installations and alien-grade inventions? Then read on, amigos.”

Hamburger Helper’s Hand Finds New Employment at Midas

First a message of warning: If you live in an urban area and have a late model SUV, your catalytic converter is at risk. You see, catalytic converters usually contain a small amount of precious metal (gold, platinum) that thieves will steal from your car and sell off. Late model SUVs generally have a catalytic converter that’s easy to remove, especially considering that they sit high enough off the ground for someone to access without too much trouble. Take it from me: You don’t want to walk up to your car one day to see your muffler on the ground. Get that thing welded on at a body shop.

Now to this campaign: The Martin Agency apparently found the Hamburger Helper hand busking on the street corner, and decided to offer it a job as the snarky new golden mascot at Midas. It floats around unaffected by the laws of gravity, insulting consumers about their choices of automotive repair shops.

As you can see, this new mascot is more dick than hand, going so far as to knock on consumers’ doors to tell them they are terrible people and deserve a golden slap print on their face. But, then again, what’s a more effective strategy for selling services than mocking the customers you’re trying to attract?

Pizza Hut Launches Review (Updated)

We’ve received confirmation that Pizza Hut is indeed reviewing its creative ad duties, which have been handled by The Martin Agency for the last three-and-a-half years. We’ve been told, though, that the Richmond, VA-based Martin will defend the account, which it beat out Gotham for at the end of 2009.

We’re trying to get a comment/statement from Yum! Brands-owned Pizza Hut, which worked with BBDO for 20 years prior to moving its account to the Martin Agency. Some of the latter’s most recent work for the chain includes this year’s “Hut Hut Hut” pre-Super Bowl push (see after the jump). No word yet if Pizza Hut’s review includes the digital and social components, which Martin also took over on two years ago, but we’ll hopefully have some clarification this afternoon.

Update: Pizza Hut has issued the statement below regarding the move. We’ve been told that the review involves just the advertising account as Martin doesn’t actually handle digital and social. Huge in fact manages e-commerce for the brand and TracyLocke is handling the latter.

“Pizza Hut is continually looking at fresh ways to enhance its marketing efforts and strengthen relationships and points of engagement with pizza lovers. As a result, we are conducting an advertising agency review. We are thankful for the commitment The Martin Agency has made to our business over the past 3 1/2 years and have invited them to participate in the review process. We will not disclose the other participating agencies nor additional details regarding the search.”

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Martin Agency Cuts Some Staff

We’ve been yelled at all week on the Spy line about not updating what’s going on with cuts at the Martin Agency, so here you go. An agency spokesperson has confirmed that as of today, Martin’s Richmond, VA HQ has let go of 13 staffers (or two percent) of its workforce across departments.

As a result of Martin Agency’s move, the total staff count across Richmond and its NY outpost has decreased from 524 to 511. While not quite as severe as the six percent reduction last year, we’ve been told that this latest round is due to various things including clients cutting back, switching skill sets, etc. From what we’ve been told, the Martin camp is offering those affected by this week’s cuts severance, outplacement services and even an offer to pay the agency they’re interviewing with half of their first month’s salary, up to $4,000, if said agency picks them up in the next 30 days.

Martin Agency, Benjamin Moore Make Over Main Streets…with Help from Brad Pitt

“Main Street Matters,” The Martin Agency’s first campaign for Benjamin Moore since winning creative/media duties for the paint brand back in February, celebrates local businesses in the US and Canada. From today until June 30, users can visit paintwhatmatters.com and vote for a town to receive a Benjamin Moore makeover. Painting and renovations will then take place in 20 cities from July until May 2014.

Brad Pitt lends his simpering voiceover (can’t help but think of his Chanel ad) and star power to Benjamin Moore’s video spot, with lines like, “Drug stores that still make milkshakes with real ice cream…matter.” The video–a slideshow of old-timey American storefronts–isn’t exactly scintillating, but of course the idea of supporting local communities hits a soft spot in my small-town girl heart. Using digital outreach to revitalize mom and pop places is a smart, noble idea. I just wish the campaign’s design sense didn’t also need a makeover.

Credits after the jump.

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And Now, a Heartwarming Exchange Between an Agency Prez & CCO

This actually happened a few days ago, but we figured a good warming of the cockles was in order to kick off yet another work week. If you haven’t heard, Martin Agency president Mike Hughes has been battling cancer for some time now and began documenting what he’s going through under hospice care via his blog, “Unfinished Thinking (and now there’s a sister blog as well). Well, weeks after his writing commenced, his agency, led by chief creative officer Joe Alexander, sent some love back his way via the tribute site, “We All Love Mike.”

Well, the fond reciprocation has continued as of last week as Alexander sent this note to Hughes that perhaps provides a glimpse into their relationship and perhaps the culture at Martin:  ”Last year, I approached the St. Paul School Board about a scholarship in my dad’s name. He was a lifelong educator in St. Paul and really felt teaching was his “calling.” They loved the idea and I’m happy to say we have a first winner. It’s an annual award that will be given to a minority male graduating senior who has committed to majoring in education in college. Just thrilled about this. Wanted to share with you because I know how much you love this kind of stuff – and yeah – I love impressing you, too. That never gets old. Love you, Joe”

As one tipster says, “How many President-CCO relationships in advertising include promoting one’s charitable work, smiley face emoticons and telling each other I love you? Not enough.” Can’t say we disagree.

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