Ad Industry Productivity to Plummet 37% During Advertising Week


Did you read that headline? Will you tweet it? Will you share it on Facebook? Maybe LinkedIn? Oh and how about on Ello? Oh yea. Ello. Everyone’s on Ello this week, right? Oh wait, you’re not? Loser. OK, just kidding. You’re actually one of the smart ones to avoid this FOMO Folly that’s reached epic insanity.

Anyway, back to the matter at hand. Its Advertising Week. And all the bigwigs, blowhards, pontificators, bloviators and, oh yea, smart people who know all kinds of awesome shit about advertising have gathered in New York to share their expertise so the rest of us can Tweet it, Facebook it, post it to LinkedIn and, yea, Ello.

So what about this precipitous drop in productivity during Advertising Week? Surely with everyone out of the office either getting some all important face time on a panel or sitting in the audience drinking in all this free knowledge, there ain’t much work getting done in the office.

Oh wait, you mean you left all your work to the interns? Yea, that’ll go over well. Besides, all the interns are doing this week are following you on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and, yea, Ello so they don’t suffer from Advertising Week FOMO hence, they aren’t covering your ass while you’re out having fun and pretending to work.

Which, again, brings us back to the epic drop in work productivity in the ad industry this week. Thirty seven percent. That’s a big drop. Imagine in Apple cut iPhone production by 37%? Yea, now you can relate to what we’re talking about here. Kinda makes you want to head back to the office and get some work done, right?

No? No? You’d rather listen to Katie Couric and Sheryl Sandberg or maybe get an eyeful of Martin Sorrell holding court? Well that’s entirely up to you. Much like Cannes Lions, these industry shindigs are much more about schmoozing and boozing than garnering inspiration. A callous viewpoint, you say? Check your hangover in the morning and get back to us.

Oh and as to how we arrived at the 37% drop in productivity figure? We totally made it up. But you have to admit, despite all you pro-multi-taskers out there, you simply can’t work and play at the same time. Something’s gotta give. And we know what’s giving this week. See you around town.

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Ad Industry Productivity to Plummet 37% During Advertising Week

An Inside Look At How These 4 Agencies Collaborate to Create Awesome Content


Content marketing, inbound marketing and native advertising practices have entrenched themselves in every corner of the marketing spectrum. Entire businesses like Buzzfeed, Nativo and ShareThrough have sprouted to serve this growing marketing practice. But it’s not just publishers and ad tech vendors who have hopped aboard this train. It’s ad agencies as well. But how are these agencies folding these new methods of marketing into their service offerings? How are they collaborating internally and with external resources to ensure everything moves along swimmingly?

To find out, we reached out to several agencies to query them on their mindset, approach, and collaborative practices as they relate to the creation and dissemination of content. In general, agencies are approaching the creation of editorial content much in the same way they approach the creation of an ad campaign. But differences arise with the addition of new players in the process.

Content Creation is Collaborative

Perhaps stating the obvious (which, let’s be honest, can’t be done enough in this fast-moving business), School of Thought creative director Tom Geary says it’s all about a strong partnership and three key steps. As he explains, “Content marketing has to be collaborative. The client, after all, is the expert in their field. Our job is to leverage that expertise. That means, one, get up to speed fast – researching, studying, and most importantly, asking questions. Two, hone in on the key message(s). Three, translate it/them into a suitable content format. It’s a rewarding process. Pretty much any vendor can perform step three. It takes a partner to execute steps one and two.”

So, much like creating an ad campaign that resonates effectively with its intended audience, partnership and knowledge sharing are key. It’s collaborative, too. And the creation of content has changed the way agencies work with clients and how they work internally.

Getting down to details on just how his agency effectively collaborates and approaches the process of content creation, Brunner VP, director of social media George Potts says, “Content creation at Brunner is not the exclusive domain of one agency function. It is a cross-functional team process, involving social media strategists, community managers, public relations specialists, paid media planners, account leaders, consumer/readership researchers, creative writers, visual designers and production professionals.”

MRY CMO David Berkowitz concurs, saying, “All content marketing and native advertising comes out of our media team, which covers earned, owned, and paid media, in collaboration with the creative and production teams depending on the content involved. We have account managers and project managers handling the process, but then various media specialists executing the advertising. The client is involved throughout the process, from aligning on strategy and goals at the outset to reviewing creative and copy.”

Over at Brunner, Potts says his agency has adopted a brand publishing model that “evolved from traditional journalism” that puts the reader, not the brand, first. Shaking up internal functions at the agency, he says “the agency fused social media, public relations, media planning & placement, research and strategy into one communications planning department, whose leaders, along with a few content marketing champions in our creative department, manage content creation. The process fosters, and benefits from, a synergy between owned, paid and earned media perspectives. Also, we’re experimenting with new roles such as brand publisher/content strategist and brand editor to further elevate our approach. These positions currently report to the VP, director of social media and SVP, communications planning.”

Who Creates the Content?

New models of collaboration will continue to evolve to properly serve content marketing and native advertising. As they should. But, cutting to the chase, who actually creates the content? And what processes surround the creation of the content?

MRY’s Berkowitz says most of the content created for clients is done in-house, but outside production studios or other specialty shops are tapped when needed. At TDA_Boulder, it’s a tight ship, with executive digital director Gene Paek saying, “We concept, write and direct all brand-created — as opposed to user-generated or influencer-created — content in-house for our clients.”

At School of Thought, it’s not so cut and dry; the agency uses both internal and external resources to create content. But key to the process is central management. “We are always the client’s point of contact with the developing content. We project manage,” says Geary.

Pointing out the fact that not all content is original (nor does it need to be) and that, sometimes, it’s reformatted, reused or repurposed, Brunner’s Potts says his agency occasionally partners with content marketing companies such as NewsCred, which can both license existing content as well as call upon its network of content creators on behalf of the agency. And the agency has forged a relationship with content distribution company Nativo to bring scale to content on behalf of its clients.

In an effort to better collaborate with content creators and convey to those content creators the place and purpose of a particular piece of content, Potts delineates content into three categories: hero, hub and hygiene. “Hero content inspires through emotional storytelling, and is typically higher production value, and promoted through paid media,” he explains. “Hub content appears at a regularly updated destination (typically social or; it must be valuable and engaging, worth returning to or sharing. Hygiene content delivers our most compelling or useful response to a user’s question, most typically through search, social and”

Collaborating With Publishers and Content Syndicators

The collaborative process of producing content and the decision of who does the actual producing are both important elements of content marketing, inbound marketing and native advertising. Of equal importance is working with entities that get that content in front of an audience. Sometimes its just an internal, client-side process such as publishing content on a corporate blog. Other times it’s finding more legs for the content through PR efforts, paid native placements or ad network-like content distribution mechanisms. In all cases, collaboration remains key.

In terms of working with a native advertising partner or content syndication vendors, Brunner’s Potts says his agency follows “three critical steps.” First, “be clear on goals and objectives upfront with all parties.” Second, “determine a way to make sure the readers’/consumers’ needs are met.” And third, “establish a clear chain of communications. You can have many varied points of view within the team, beyond just the agency’s. All will need to be heard. And the agreed upon criteria will need to be revisited regularly.”

Though Potts doesn’t usually work directly with publishers — preferring, instead, to work with content syndicators like Nativo, Sharethrough and Outbrain — when he does he says “we doggedly pursue a co-created approach to the content. Doing so exposes us to how they run their pub/property — which, in turn, helps us understand how we’ll get, and certify that we will get, the publicity we seek. Also, co-creation lets the publisher understand our brand publishing mission, which further helps guarantee success.”

Creating content that will be used on a corporate blog, syndicated through a content distributor or spread through social media can be a complex process, but, like anything complex in this world that requires more than one person to complete, effective collaboration will lessen headaches and streamline the process.

This article was previously published on the Central Desktop blog.

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An Inside Look At How These 4 Agencies Collaborate to Create Awesome Content

Boston Drops A Duece on Derek Jeter In Fart-Filled Ode to Number 2


So you all know how Derek Jeter is retiring and there was that Gatorade farewell, right? Well now Jeter has being honored with a different kind of farewell. The kind that comes from the minds of junior high school boys telling jokes and the bathroom and laughing at each other’s farts.

But, hey, farts are funny. Especially when they’re eminating from the stall next to you and it’s all you can to to contain your laughter. Anyway, have a gander at this ode to number 2 from quirky sports slogan t-shirt maker, Sully’s.

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Boston Drops A Duece on Derek Jeter In Fart-Filled Ode to Number 2

ColensoBBDO Channels Gary Wright’s ‘Dream Weaver’ For Cosmically Awesome Grocery Store Ad


There’s a new trend in town. Well, at least Down Under. Yea. Weird grocery store ads. Likely, you’ve seen the latest oddities from Aldi in Australia. Now we’ve got new ads from ColensoBBDO for a supermarket chain called New World.

In an ad entitled Dreaming of Yams, a man and a woman talking in the break room at work agree to have dinner together. The woman says she’s a vegetarian. They guy has no idea what that is. Until he enters the weird world of the produce section at New World where walking is optional, the veggies talk and Gary Wright’s awesome 1975 hit, Dream Weaver, soothes. Apparently, it’s all enough to convert our man into a vegetarian.

A second ad, The Smell of Success, isn’t nearly as fun which doesn’t mean it’s bad. It centers on a real estate agency who goes a bit overboard with baked goods and how they can improve the likelihood a home will sell.

Both beat the usual boredom of price and item. We like this trend.

ColensoBBDO Channels Gary Wright’s ‘Dream Weaver’ For Cosmically Awesome Grocery Store Ad

Airline Hires Bikini-Clad Models For Photoshoot Then Denies It All Saying Photoshoot Was ‘Unofficial’


Well now here’s some of the usual marketing double talk that just goes to show we really haven’t progressed very far past the days when we all lived in caves. VietJet Air, which hired a bunch of bikini-clad models from modeling agency Venus for a photoshoot, is now denying the photos are official.

A spokesperson said the “uncensored” photos were “leaked from a test shooting under a contract between VietJet Air and Venus and are not the official promotional photos of VietJet Air.”

Which begs the question, why did VietAir hire the models for the photoshoot in the first place? Just for fun? Right. No. They’ve done it before. It’s there thing. And now that everyone’s upset, they’re just denying the whole thing.

And come one, in this day and age when everyone has a phone and Instagram, there ain’t no secrets anymore. Many of the models posted pictures from the shoot which occurred last week and now the airline is trying to clean up the mess. Good luck with that.

The airline went on to stick its foot further in its mouth saying,”We are sorry for the incident and are enacting necessary measures to prevent these ugly and unofficial photos from spreading.”

Here are some photos from the shoot:



And author and flight attendant Heather Poole took to Twitter and Mashable to share her dismay:

And let’s remember, this practice isn’t only occurring in overseas countries that haven’t yet progressed to the point where objectification of women is a thing of the past. It’s happening right here in America courtesy of Ryanair and other airlines.

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Airline Hires Bikini-Clad Models For Photoshoot Then Denies It All Saying Photoshoot Was ‘Unofficial’