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Archives: November 2011

Radio Shack Ready to Start Anew

After partnering with Butler, Shine, Stern and Partners for the last two-and-a-half years, Radio Shack is ready to refresh its agency relationships and has now launched a formal creative review of its $200 million account. BSSP, which coined “The Shack” for the chain among other things, is expected to join in on the review that will be aided once again by consulting firm, Select Resources International.

In a statement, Radio Shack EVP/CMO Lee D. Applbaum says, “Although our brand transformation is far from complete, the needs of the business and demands of the competitive and macroeconomic landscape require a different approach to our creative strategy and execution. Consequently, we must ensure that we are aligned with a partner who can develop and execute retail-centric creative focused ultimately on driving consideration and traffic.”

Chicago Portfolio School Director Calls it Quits?

Yeah yeah, we know you hate any posts ad school-related, but we’ll throw a bone this time to the teachers, not the students (perhaps because we’re feeling guilty about never visiting our old ones). Anyhow, a tipster sent us what is apparently a note verbatim from one Maria Scileppi, who has spent the last 18 months as director at the Chicago Portfolio School, which has produced creatives like these over the years. Anyhow, here goes:

“This is a bittersweet moment for me. After 4.5 wonderful years at the school I’ve decided it’s time to move on so I can pursue my art and passion projects. This has absolutely been a dream job for me as its allowed me to get to know and help hundreds of talented, creative, awesome people get their dream job.

I’ve had the pleasure of watching the school evolve into a power house for design and advertising. As some of the older alumni will attest, the school has come a long in the past four and half years. When I first started I took the garbage out, we had 1.5 floors, there was just three of us working full time (Jeff, me and a book keeper). We didn’t have Digital Bootcamp, the Guest Speaker Series, The Royale Rumble, The alumni job board, the “5th quarter”, Best of Quarter, the Freshman Mixer, the Portfolio Debut and I didn’t have an office for the first two years. The quality of the student body – the dedication, the passion, the work has increased exponentially and that’s reflected in the portfolios coming out of here, the hiring rate, the awards that are won and the press that our students have gotten.

I feel so fortunate to have had this position and look forward to passing the baton and cheering from the sidelines as the next Director moves the school forward. Jeff is meeting with lots of amazing candidates and will announce the new Director in the near future. Stay tuned!

My last day will be this Wednesday and for those of you in town, I’d love to share a hug and a beer with you.”

We Hear: Cuts Made at Gotham

Could it be that Interpublic-owned, New York-based Gotham is still feeling ripple effects from the Chobani loss a few months ago? All assumptions aside, multiple sources are telling us that the agency has cut approximately 8-10 staffers across departments, but mostly in creative. Gotham has yet to respond to our inquiries, but we’ll keep you posted if and when we hear.


Barbarian, Samsung Would Like You to Play a Game

Now that 72andSunny has displayed its Apple-baiting work for Samsung, let’s focus on another project for the latter electronics brand from the Barbarian Group, which is being dubbed as “a scavenger hunt through the bizarre and wonderful corners of Internet culture.” It’s a bit early for Easter, but there’s an egg hunt to take part in this next installment of TBG’s “Boosted” campaign, called “Secret Sites,” for Samsung and Intel. As you can deduce, there is promotion in play, mainly for the Samsung Series 7 laptops, but there is also a nod to the old-school meme known as the single-serving site. We’ll refrain from busting out a Tyler Durden soliloquy, but from the site itself, here’s how to play and possibly win. Cult of Apple, we guess, need not apply.

“Fill in the URLs

Write down daily challenge. You cannot enter it on this site. (Hackers ruin everything!!)
Get clues on Facebook and Twitter.
Fill in numbered spaces with corresponding letters.
Enter the URL in your browser. Hit enter.
Fastest person to each site wins a new Samsung Series 7 with 2nd Gen Intel® Core™ i5 Processor.

Think Fast

The fastest person to find a secret site could win the super speedy Samsung Series 7 with 2nd Gen Intel® Core™ i5 Processor. So get out the trusty ball point. It’s time to spill some secrets.
Get Sexy Series 7 06
Challenge 2 out of  7″


Mall Shoppers, Gear Up for the “LOLiday Season”

No digitally savvy shopaholic’s visit to his or her local mall over the next month is complete without a new holiday-themed mobile app for download. Fortunately for patrons of Westfield Malls, they now have access to the “LOLiday App,” courtesy of the minds at EVB, who are no strangers to holiday projects.

After downloading the app for iPhone, Android or iPad2,  shoppers can then visit the “LOLiday Card Set” at their local participating Westfield Mall. Here, using the magic of mobile technology and augmented reality, shoppers can insert images of themselves into wacky holiday scenes. Why would the nation’s consumers want to insert themselves into a photo that depicts them kissing a buff, shirtless Santa Claus? Well, ladies and gentlemen, they do it for the LOLZ (see also: “lulz”). And, for those avoiding the mall completely or still incapacitated after suffering injuries from a Black Friday Wal-Mart stampede, a completely new silly photo experience awaits on the LOLiday Cards website.

Remember, a new iPad starts at $499 retail, but LOLZ are free. So, this holiday season, give the gift of laughter, and you might even win $10,000 as part of Westfield Mall’s “Laughing All the Way Sweepstakes.” Participating malls and credits follow after the jump.

Read more

Your Meme of the Day: Junior Art Director Version

Ah, so this is the thought process of a newbie AD trying to scratch and claw his or her way up the ranks. We really dig the “Kip” look from Napoleon Dynamite, though. Give it another week or two dude, and that moustache should look a bit less prepubescent. Anyhow, it looks like everyone’s piling on, so if you want to join in on the fun, go here.

h/t JP

Blue Cross/Blue Shield FL Taps a Handful of Omnicom Shops

It looks like 67-year-old Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida went all in with Omnicom as the Jacksonville-based healthcare organization has appointed five shops from the umbrella corp to handle future brand/marketing communication work. It looks like BCBS FL is staying local for the most part as the agencies on its new roster include BBDO Atlanta, which will handle brand advertising and Fort Lauderdale-based Zimmerman, which will take on retail advertising and media buying/planning. Rounding out the list are Footsteps (African-American advertising), Alma (Hispanic) and TPG (digital/direct).

Regarding the new agency relationship, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida’s VP of brand development/marketing comms Mark S. Lee says in a statement, “It embraces the emerging trend of other best-of-class marketers to employ an open-source agency model amongst its partner agencies. And it provides us with the focused specialization we require to meet the marketing challenges we face in our multi-dimensional Florida market.”

The incumbent on the BCBS FL account was Draftfcb Chicago, which was one of the seven finalists in the review that took place over the summer.


Tuesday Morning Stir

-92YTribeca is hosting an discussion about “extreme marketing” featuring an SVP from PETA and Stuart Elliot from the New York Times (promo pic above). link

-Digitas alum Scott Gray was named MD of the relationship marketing group at MA-based Allen & Gerritsen.

-Former JWT creative Jerad Koskey and Draftfcb alum Linda Dos Santos joined Burrell Communications as digital art director and print producer, respectively.

-Publicis Groupe acquired 100 percent of full-service Chinese digital agency, Gomye. link

-Report: Windows Phone outshines iOS and Android when it comes to mobile advertising. link

More Swedish Creatives Head to McCann

Adam Ulvegärde and Robert Lund, the art director/copywriter duo, respectively, who have spent over four years at Swedish shop Forsman & Bodenfors working on accounts such as IKEA, Reebok and Swedish Radio, have left Scandinavia for New York to join McCann’s Big Apple branch as creative directors. Despite the move across the Atlantic, Ulvegärde and Lund  (right) won’t be straying too far from home turf as they’ll be working mainly on IKEA, which has awarded McCann plenty of business over the course of 2011.

The pair’s new boss and countryman Andreas Dahlqvist, who joined McCann as vice chairman/ECD just six months ago, says  of the new hires in a statement, “They point the way to the kind of advertising that we’d like to see more of. They are a fantastic addition to McCann New York and further proof that we are putting creative excellence and innovation back at the very core of our offering.”

By the way, does anyone have the result of that push-pin-related, intern-baiting contest from McCann NY?


Monday Odds and Ends

-Nissan takes out an ad to celebrate its recognized ad campaign from TBWA\Chiat\Day LA (above). link

-How do you “rebrand baby girls?” Fast Company puts ad agencies to the test. link

-Matt Spielman joined Publicis-owned, Atlanta-based Moxie as SVP, strategy director and overall business leader for L’Oréal.

-Mark Gethin was named U.S. creative director of color grading at bi-coastal VFX/digital studio MPC. link

-NYC-based agency Noise welcomed Cory Berger VP of marketing and biz dev.

-Could we see a Droid 4 from Motorola in December? link

-Washington Square Films signed director Paul Iannacchino for commercial representation.