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Archives: August 2011

Wednesday Odds and Ends

-Sony, Toshiba and Hitachi have joined forces. link

-Awesome: IKEA is donating $62 million to expand an overcrowded refugee complex in Kenya. link

-Coca-Cola is ready for a social media monitoring agency. link

-SF-based shop Eleven hired MDavid Low to serve in the newly created position of creative technologist.

-How do you become the Steve Jobs of your company? link

-Our middle-school dreams/nightmares and future ringtones have been realized (above). link

-Gannett expanded its Yahoo ad alliance. link

-Yes, there is a hipster move-out checklist. link

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We Hear: 22squared Nabs Jackson Hewitt Biz

Sources familiar with the matter tell us that Atlanta-based 22Squared, AOR for Baskin-Robbins and others, has won the Jackson Hewitt account, which went into review in May. From what we’ve been told, the Atlanta-based agency beat out some familiar Texas shops by the name of The Richards Group and GSD&M for the financial services brand’s advertising services.

22squared (or 484 if you’re doing the math) is not done yet as we hear the ATL operation is among the final three contenders alongside Leo Burnett Chicago and Y&R New York in the LendingTree pitch.

Blind Item: What Agency Pitch Seemed Like a Complete Waste of Time?

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.

Op-Ed: Hey, Someone Does Like the New Burger King Ad!

What do you know, we have a new monthly contributor by the name of Josh Seifert, a senior marketing strategist at Brooklyn-based, IPG-owned digital shop HUGE. Josh will be speaking to you all on the last Wednesday of every month, and in his debut for AgencySpy, the Digitas/Grey alum gives us his thoughts on the well-received McGarryBowen ad for Burger King. Take it away, sir.

I love the new Burger King ad. It’s delightful food porn that makes me pay attention to something I’d otherwise ignore. Well-done. I still won’t be having a whopper, but since I’m not the target, who cares? There’s been plenty of commenting back and forth about the wisdom of the strategy, the brilliance of the creative execution, the ad’s brand building potential, etc. But without insider knowledge of the Burger King business and agency brief, we can only speculate on the wisdom of the strategy and the effectiveness of the resulting creative. Certainly, it looks nice, and oh that music. While Burger King may have opted for new thinking, a simple debate over the merits of McGarryBowen vs. CP+B misses the real, fundamental issue.

Essentially, BK has selected exactly the same paradigm of marketing communication that hasn’t been working for them: the primacy of a 30 second story to sell a burger. I’m not so foolish as to suggest that advertising isn’t important. On the contrary: It works. We’ve seen this proven again and again. But for a business proclaiming its reinvention from the ground up, shifting only the perspective in approach does not a new future make.

Read more

Let’s Go Around the World with a MINI Campaign

From BSUR Amsterdam come two colorful new global campaigns for MINI.

The first of which, titled “Another Day. Another Adventure,” comprises three different TV spots where MINI drivers go on journeys with their all over the world with their compact cars putting them in (and out) of harm’s way. The first spot, “Hitchhiker,” is the longest and maybe the weakest of the three, with an Icelandic MINI driver thinking he may have picked up a convict on the run by accident. Really, it shouldn’t take an 1:42 run time through the desolate highways of Iceland for a mistaken identity gag we’ve probably all seen before.

The second spot, “Love is in the Air,” is the strangest and most surreal of the three, finding a couple in a MINI attached to a parachute drop down in Hong Kong while being pursued by a motorcyclist who also seems to be traveling through the sky. The final spot (above) called “Sunday in Rio” is the most lavish and fast-paced of the three, so colorful and fun that it stands out above the rest. And, it’s the one we’ll hopefully be seeing aired more than the others once the campaign hits the airwaves.

The second campaign is an integrated social effort and collaboration with VICE magazine called “All the Wrong Places.” As VICE documentary filmmakers embark on five “unwise” journeys throughout the world, interested adventurers can log on MINI’s Facebook page to request a position as “co-pilots” on these trips, riding shotgun in films that will appear once every three weeks on Facebook starting in November.

What say you, dear reader? Are people going to buy into this sense of daring and adventure that MINI’s selling harder than it did during those product placements in the Bourne Identity films at the beginning of last decade? Watch the trailer for the social media campaign after the jump.

Read more

Organic NY Slowly Making GM Transition

Because you surely need to know, we’ve been told by sources familiar with the matter that there will soon be a general management shift at Organic’s New York office–but from what we hear, it’ll move at a slower pace than a Merchant/Ivory film. Anyhow, Minna Rhee, who joined the Omnicom agency just over four years ago (during the Mark Kingdon era) from Razorfish, will be leaving her post within the next few months and will be replaced by Amy McAllister, who has served as SVP, engagement management at Organic since January 2010.

Prior to joining Organic, McAllister served as a senior partner, executive marketing director at Ogilvy but spent most of her ad career (10 years) at Digitas as SVP, marketing. We haven’t been told what Rhee’s next move is as of yet. Continue waiting on pins and needles.

Event Notice: Semantic Web Media Summit Adds Hearst VP to Roster

Hey kids, here’s a little update on our sister site Semanticweb.com‘s Web Media Summit that will take place in NYC on September 14. You might have heard of this little publishing firm called Hearst, and now, Semantic Web has added Michael Dunn, VP/CTO of its Interactive Media division, to its roster of speakers that already includes folks from Razorfish, Getty Images and more. According to our mediabistro.com sibling, “Semantic Technolgies are changing the way media companies are approaching advanced media monitoring, analytics, publishing, ad targeting, content distribution, and SEO.” For the sake of avoiding further semantics, we’ll just direct you to Semantic Web’s update on the event here.

Wednesday Morning Stir

-Hello Design launched a Facebook app for dairy brand Tillamook. link

-Digital agency Reactive has opened up its fifth office, this time in NYC. link

-What does an abandoned NYC look like thanks to Hurricane Irene? Buffalo Picture House shows us (above). link

-Philly-based interactive shop Brolik brought on client-side guy Matt Segal to serve in its business development department. link

-The social CRM market is expected to top $1 billion through 2012. link

So, Did 72andSunny Win Fiat’s Heart?

Well, after the apparent break-up of Fiat and Impatto, the rumors have been swirling that the automaker has chosen 72andSunny as its new AOR. The L.A./Amsterdam-based agency had already been handling digital work for the brand, so perhaps this is the logical transition. Here’s one spy’s weigh-in: “Fiat did a RFP and several agencies pitched this 2-3 months ago.  Fiat announced to those agencies it had been awarded to the LA agency.” We contacted the 72andSunny camp yesterday and they provided this quaint response: “We are not able to comment on the FIAT business at this time. We suggest contacting FIAT directly if you are looking for more information.” We all know what this means. Wait for the official announce later this week, we think.

Update: Breaking news: Chrysler offered no comment either.

 

Tuesday Odds and Ends

-Blast Radius welcomed Team Detroit alum James Robinson as an ACD in Portland and brought on Jake Brown as strategy director in New York.

-Facebook has shelled out around $40K to hackers as part of its “bug bounty” security initiative. link

-Since we’re on a fashion kick today, let’s celebrate 100 years of style in East London with some help from The Viral Factory, shall we (above)?

-Wikipedia’s Jimmy Wales is among the keynote speakers at next months’ OMMA Global event in New York. link

-Morgan James joined Chicago/Santa Monica prodco Optimus as animation director.

-HTC’s new design chief has big plans. link

-Kenji Summers‘ Passport Project has chosen its first grant recipient. link; link

-Rich Siegel recalls his days of working on the Apple account. link

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