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Wednesday Morning Stir

-BETC Paris may have produced the weirdest car rental ad ever for Sixt (video above).

-Twitter is expanding its native content offering.

-Jim Carrey parodied those Matthew McConaughey Lincoln ads on SNL last week.

-Sainsbury’s replaces brand ambassador David Beckham with Daniel Sturridge.

-The Drum published its inaugural advertising census.

-Pay-TV network Epix teamed up with ten Vine creators for six-second versions of famous movies.

-Chrysler’s head of quality control, Doug Betts, has stepped down to “pursue other opportunities.”

-Currys PC World launches online ads in support of Christmas campaign.

BBDO and Foot Locker Predict John Wall’s Entire Career

The latest spot in the BBDO series for Foot Locker is a bit more forward-looking than others: it involves Wizard Point guard John Wall’s colleagues predicting his entire career arc. Here’s “The Process”:

Fairly accurate, but he left out the “gambling problem followed by redemption” part, which leads to either the inevitable “re-dedicates life to family/charity” chapter or the “goes through painfully public rehab/tattoo spree/divorce” option. Also: didn’t Wall’s Wings and Burgers just hire TBWA?

We would definitely watch that local car dealership commercial more than once, though.

Read more

Tuesday Odds and Ends

-Is this 30-second spot for Spearmint Rhino really the “first of its kind online marketing video for a gentleman’s club” (video above)?

-W+K London and Honda are debuting digital content “The Other Side” tomorrow.

-Taco Bell staged a social media blackout to promote its new mobile app.

-Publics Groupe today announced the acquisition of real-time data management and multi-channel programmatic buying platform Run.

-This Vine star seems to have just walked out on a million dollar ad deal.

-Global adaptation and production agency Craft announced the naming of Simon Sikorski and Cath Mawer to the newly created position of chief client officer.

-Pitney Bowes selects DigitasLBi to handle global media business.

-Boston-based full-service media agency Norbella announced the additions of Lindsey Doolittle, content marketing strategist, and Alice Campbell, director of business development.

-Interpublic Group media agency ID Media was named media agency of record for Cox Business, “a division of Cox Communications that provides communications services for 300,000 businesses nationwide.”

Carhartt Plugs Rain Defender Technology, Disregards ‘Weatherman’


Carhartt’s in-house creative team worked with production company Furlined to launch a fall integrated advertising campaign promoting the brand’s Rain Defender technology, available in select outerwear, sweatshirts, pants and accessories.

You’ll have to click through to view the clip, because some people think autoplay embeddable videos are a good idea.

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We Hear: West Hired Someone As Its New CCO


Someone really wants us to keep posting on West, the San Francisco-based agency that refuses to respond to anything resembling a press query.

First, we went over TechCrunch’s unenthusiastic review of the agency’s homepage. Then we heard that West had lost a large chunk of its business (the agency and the other contacts that our readers suggested did not respond to our requests for more information).

We heard that various executives who had left the agency were doing well with their own ventures. This is not really news.

Over the last week or so, however, we have received conflicting tips about the newest top creative executive at West.

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RTO+P Introduces ‘Planet of Triumphs’ for Planet Fitness

Red Tettemer O’Connell + Partners is launching “Planet of Triumphs” — a new online community for Planet Fitness members to celebrate their accomplishements — with a digital and social campaign.

“Planet of Triumphs” was created with the insight that Planet Fitness’ “Judgement Free Zone” allows its members to accomplish feats both great and small that they might not have been able to do in a setting where they had to worry about how they would be perceived by others. Built on the “belief that every achievement deserves to be celebrated,” the community encourages members to share their stories and accomplishments while both giving and receiving encouragement from other Planet Fitness members. Members can submit their stories via photos and videos using a selection of templates and enter to win win weekly prizes and a chance to be named “Triumph of the Week.” Those who submit before December 16th could also be given a walk-on spot in a 2015 Planet Fitness commercial.

RTO+P introduces the program in the video above, in which Planet Fitness members share their stories. Their accomplishments range from getting on a treadmill for the first time to undergoing such a transformation that people no longer recognize you. The video celebrates these accomplishments while introducing “Planet of Triumphs” and emphasizing Planet Fitness’ all-inclusive mentality. The program is also being promoted through paid digital and social media. Read more

David&Goliath, LeBron Tout Kia as ‘Fit for a King’

David&Goliath teamed up with NBA superstar LeBron James in its latest effort for Kia, which recently extended its contract as “official automotive partner of the NBA.”

In the spot, James emerges from the Kia’s new K900 luxury sedan at some type of glitzy red carpet event. The star struck valet stumbles over his words as LeBron tosses him the keys and says “Keep it close,” followed by the taglne “Fit for a King.” Entitled “Valet,” the ad is perfectly timed, breaking today on the opening day of the NBA season. It arrives as James rides a wave of publicity for his much-discusses return to Cleveland, which was celebrated in a recent Beats campaign. At any rate, the spot aims for a stylish simplicity, letting the ride — and LeBron’s endorsement of it — mostly speak for itself. Read more

We Hear: Kit Kat Planning Agency Review?


Today in tips that are not likely to be true, someone tells us that Kit Kat has begun a UK agency review that will “probably” go global.

Three reasons we don’t put too much faith in this tip:

1) JWT has been Kit Kat’s AOR for some time (except in the US, where the candy is produced by Hershey rather than Nestle). In fact, just a week ago JWT Amsterdam released the “Give Holland a Break” campaign.

2) The agency’s spot “Break From Gravity,” which hit two years ago, got more attention than any other recent Kit Kat ad.

3) This is now officially the most popular “brand tweet” ever with more than twice as many favorites and nearly twice as many retweets as the 360i Oreo one that you still hear about all the time. And JWT London did it.

That work alone made us devote more of our attention to Kit Kat than we have in years, so there wouldn’t be much reason for the brand to review its creative agency at this point, would there?

UPDATE: we got a “we don’t comment on speculation” from Nestle communications in Europe, and our PR translator tells us that this phrase almost always means that we’re onto something. So JWT might have to defend its business after all.

UPDATE to the update: we got a follow-up from the team this morning to clarify that this rumor is not true. Sorry, MediaPost.

McCann Explores Awkward ‘Conversations’ for the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence

McCann New York teamed up with production company Private School Entertainment to create a gun safety PSA for the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence entitled “Conversations.”

The 30-second spot, directed by David Kerr, was first introduced in Pittsburgh as part of a pilot project but is just now being aired nationally. It examines the kinds of awkward conversations parents have with other parents. “My son…playing…you know…” one mother awkwardly fumbles to another at the opening of the spot. Rather than finish the sentence, the ad skips to the same women engaging in other unfinished awkward conversations such as “The boys got into some of Frank’s old…magazines.” At the end of the spot a voiceover delivers the message, “Awkward conversations come with being a parent, but one might save your child’s life. Ask if there’s an unlocked gun in the house before sending your child over to play.”

The ad functions as a sort of follow up to another gun safety PSA from McCann: the sex-toy battle of “Playthings.” Not only is the style of awkward humor reminiscent of that spot, the actresses used (Iris Almario and Anna Vocino) are also the same. Interestingly, that ad was initially created for the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence, and filmed at the same time as “Conversations,” but the group turned it down, fearing it was too provocative. Dan Gross, president of the Brady Center, told The New York Times that the Brady Center then offered it up to another gun-safety organization, Evolve. Evolve had great success with the video, which eventually racked up over 6 million views on YouTube.  Read more

Tuesday Morning Stir

-Chinese shampoo ad wants you to “Believe in love again” (video above).

-YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki says YouTube may offer ad-free video subscription in the future.

-Audi has retained AKQA as its digital agency of record following a competitive review.

-Helen Mirren has been named UK ambassador for L’Oreal.

-Lowe’s is releasing a “retail-ready multi-lingual robot” in its stores.

-Here’s a look inside the offices of Huge London with Andy Thomas, group creative director.

-Rich Guest, president of U.S. operations at Tribal Worldwide, discusses “his all-time favorite campaigns, his next Netflix fixation, and his dislike of ‘technoecstasy.’”

-A recent report from Socialbakers found that more brands are uploading videos directly to Facebook.