Even though U.S. ad agency unemployment is 11.8 percent, the big four holding companies are seeing healthy revenue gains this year. WPP reports revenue is up 7.4 percent for the first nine months of 2010, Omnicom is up 6.6 percent during the same period, Publicis realized an 8.4 percent revenue gain and Interpublic saw U.S. revenue grow 8.9 percent.
Advertising Age reports shares for the four companies were "at or near their highest points since the start of the 2007 recession."
It's not quite time to pop the champagne or shoot a gerbil out of a canon but, in this industry, we'll take all the good news we can get.
All we can do at this point is pray hints of recovery turn into an actual recovery.
It's sort of like one of those drunken videos shot at a party where everyone mugs into the camera trying to look as sexy as they can. Except in this Mr. Youth video, no one's drunk, everyone has all their clothes on and intelligence wins out over insipid idiocy. But everyone is still really sexy.
This video calls attention to a fund raising effort that will result in Mr. Youth building a school in Laos this Fall. Thankful for the fact everyone at Mr. Youth has benefited from a privileged life of education and mentorship, the employees want this school to be a means for others around the world to benefit as well.
Oh, the annual agency holiday card. Every year they flood our inbox and every year we get lazier and lazier about covering them. Because, really. How many times can one sit through yet another ego-fueled piece of Flashturbation before one feels the need to strangled every creative director in the business.
Well this year, it's all about mobile. Because, after all, no matter how powerful the urge, there's only so many time an agency can Flashturbate before it needs to take a break and rethink the method by which it spreads its seed.
This year, Philadelphia-based Tierney has created The Gift of Conversation, a mobile application for everyone on the agency's shopping list that will allow the user to choose from five awkward social settings to receive 30 conversational suggestions such as "I think we're cousins" when you find yourself under the mistletoe with a less than desirable co-worker.
And, yes, you too can have this app if you really want it. Just head over to this link and download it for iPhone, Blackberry or Android.
- Natalie Portman is the new face for Dior Chérie fragrance and will appear in a series of print ads shot by Tim Walker and a TV campaign by Sofia Coppola in March 2011.
- In 2011 80% of US businesses with 100+ employees will use social media marketing, up 42% from 2008.
- Daffy's does AssCrackVertising.
- A New Zealand ad campaign has raised the ire of people after suggesting low-carb beer is only for homosexuals.
- In most places bras are sold by having models wear them while prancing around as if they want to have sex with you. In Taiwan, they just hang them on a Christmas tree.
AgencySpy already had their competition to give away five copies of Leo Burnett's new book, HumanKind, written by agency Chairman and CEO Tom Bernardin and Creative Director Mark Tutssel. The book, which we haven't completely read yet, is "not about advertising or brand propositions or selling products, but a story of people, purpose and changing behavior. It's a look at marketing that serves true human needs and not the other way around."
A lofty goal, indeed. Highlighting some of the agency's best work, the book focuses on the agency's four principles of people, purpose, participation and populism, the book is one we know we'll be a fan of. It's got lots of pictures and not a lot of words. It's a picture book or sorts for those of us that just want to wallow in the world of advertising without being subjected to pointless pontification.
Remember the Salahi's? Michaele and Tareq? They were the famed gate crasher couple who managed to sneak into a White House party in the November 2009. Perhaps wanting to clean up their act or wash the filth of Real Housewives of D.C. off their skin, the couple agreed to appear in a video promoting the holiday party of Herndon, VA-based White + Partners.
In the promotion, Michaele and Tareq riff about the fact no one actually carries around an actual printed invitation when they go to a party and make it clear we won't need one either if we want to attend the White + partners holiday party.
- It's not in English but the point is pretty clear: curling is a very, very strange sport.
- Amazon is out with a couple of less threatening Kindle ads that decidedly do not go head to head with Apple's iPad.
- Be sure to check out this week's Beancast in which some idiot named Steve Hall tries to sound like he knows what he's talking about when it comes to Facebook's new Deals offering.
- Murray Newlands is out with a new book, How to Make A Blog Book. Check out the Facebook page too.
- If you're Gossip Girl fan, you'll likely want to check out Leighton Meester in the new Vera Wang campaign when it breaks next summer. It's currently being shot in New York.
While this work by Leo Burnett Toronto for the 2010 ADCC Awards is supposed to call attention to the love/hate relationship many in advertising have with the business, all it really does is point out how fickle those who work in advertising really are.
Make up your fucking minds, people. If you hate it, get out. If you love it, dive in and quit your bitching. It's as simple as that.
That said, the spot is really beautiful. Well done work. LBT must have been loving advertising when they created this one.
Well. It's definitely a step up from Agency.com's Subway video. Just out is a new video from Venables Bell & Partners, the result of a talent competition the agency held. "J-Wunder," one of the agency's print producers won the agency's Second Annual Talent Show or a video entitled Comin' With A New Style.
In the video we see J-Wunder, along with what appear to be a "posse" of VB&P hotties, enjoying a cruise off San Francisco. The video then takes us through what all agency people do on a regular basis: vogue, drink, brag, party, drive hot cars, club, cruise and take an entire fourth of a video rolling credits.
All in all? We just don't have the energy to go down the Agency.com road again. And there's really no need. Because this video isn't bad. It's fun. It's well produced. And, hey, how many rap videos do we get about advertising?
UPDATE: Uh, oh. Seems somebody was a bit embarrassed by this. The video has been removed from YouTube. Sadly, we didn't save it.
- We really like Lacta Chocolates previous work, especially the long-form video, but this new commercial we're not liking so much. Most likely because it is a commercial and not a more involved, long form video.
- Microsoft has redesigned its MSN Games channel and has added new advertising opportunities to reach casual gamers.
- Halloween webcam fun from Alfred Ritter GmbH & Co KG for RITTER SPORT Chocolate. Scary monster Halloween cards.
- If you haven't already heard, JLo has enlisted the help of her twin children to appear in a Gucci campaign aimed at raising money for UNICEF's schools in Africa.
- Mr. T has signed a deal with Gold Promise, a gold-buying service which aims to get people a better deal.
- Boston agency Winsper received four Hatch Awards for work it did for its client, STIHL, a hand-held power tool brand.