Branded content lets sick farmer say ‘I love you’ to wife for first time in 15 years

An Australian content maker is behind a Valentine’s Day branded content offering about a farmer living with ALS being given the ability to say ‘I love you’ to his wife for the first time in 15 years.

Don’s Voice is a heart-warming look at the true story of Don and Lorraine Moir, a farming family from rural Canada debilitated by ALS.

Don’s Voice is a heart-warming look at the true story of Don and Lorraine Moir, a farming family from rural Canada debilitated by ALS.

Don’s Voice is a heart-warming look at the true story of Don and Lorraine Moir, a farming family from rural Canada debilitated by ALS.

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis is the condition which galvanised thousands to undergo Ice Bucket Challenges last year.

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Australian Turf Club prepares for Autumn Racing program

The Australian Turf Club is gearing up for the Sydney Autumn Racing program with a new ad celebrating the first year of the Golden Slipper Carnival at Rosehill Gardens.

Created by Droga5 Sydney, the ad juxtaposes shots of men and women readying themselves for a day at the races with shots of a horse preparing for the race.

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Publicis Groupe posts revenue lift in Q4 after Sapient purchase

French ‘big four’ agency Publicis Groupe has reported a lift in revenue for the fourth quarter of last year to $10.05bn (AUD) representing a 3.2 per cent increase on the previous quarter. publicis groupe logo

The result follows on from the company’s purchase of marketing and technology firm Sapient and continuing growth in digital revenue.

The group’s Australian operation’s revenue grew by 5.2 per cent while India jumped a massive 30 per cent. Latin American operations also performed strongly, growing by 14.9 percent.

Maurice Lévy, chairman and CEO of Publicis Groupe noted that the result, despite being below market expectations, was still positive. Read more »

Isobar’s Alistair Ward and Cummins & Partner’s Scott Heron join to form Sonar Group

Sonar GroupIsobar former client services director Alistair Ward and Cummins & Partners former chief digital officer Scott Heron have come together to create Sonar Group, an agency the duo are pitching as a “digitally-led agency for the modern-day marketer”.

Sonar_Small_BWThe Melbourne-based agency is positioning itself as one focused on helping businesses improve the performance of their digital marketing to grow their profits.

In a statement Ward said: “There are plenty of agencies who work to help clients meet their business objectives, but we are comfortable to put our skin in the game and offer to have our remuneration directly linked to our clients’ success.”

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Greste collagues Mohamed and Fahmy released on bail

The two colleagues of Australian journalist Peter Greste have been released on bail by an Egyptian Court, according to a statement released by Al Jazeera.

Baher Mohamed, Mohamed Fahmy and Peter Greste. Al Jazeera

Baher Mohamed, Mohamed Fahmy and Peter Greste. Al Jazeera

Greste was freed from an Egyptian prison earlier this month after more than a year behind bars, but Baher Mohamed and Mohamed Fahmy remain in Egypt with their futures uncertain.

The Al Jazeera trio have always maintained their innocence after being convicted of aiding the banned Muslim Brotherhood. Read more »

Rinehart in Supreme Court seeking access to House of Hancock

Rinehart-234x297Mining billionaire Gina Rinehart has taken legal action against the Nine Network this morning seeking access to the second episode of the House of Hancock miniseries .

The Rinehart camp is seeking access to the final episode, which portrays the relationship between Rinehart, her father Lang Hancock and his second wife Rose Porteous, to see if there a “defamatory imputations”.

The case is in Sydney’s Supreme Court this morning before Justice Peter Garling, who has today heard evidence that the Rinehart camp believes parts of the show are fictionalised with comparisons being made to the soap opera Dynasty.

A spokeswoman for Nine declined to comment on the case, but it comes just days after senior executives at Rinehart’s Hancock Prospecting took aim at Nine Entertainment Co CEO David Gyngell saying they had repeatedly told him of “glaring errors” in some scenes of the mini-series House of Hancock. Read more »

Nine’s Open House ties with Ten’s I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here

Alisa and Lysandra

Alisa and Lysandra

Nine’s decision to not air The Block: Triple Threat last night in favour of the first episode of Open House, a spinoff of The Block, saw the channel’s audience share plummet as Ten’s I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here tie with Nine’s programming in the 7.30pm timeslot for the first time.

Open House, which last night saw The Block former contestants Alisa and Lysandra given a $10,000 budget and a short time-frame to renovate a dark brick 1970s house, was watched by 620,000. This was down from The Block: Triple Threat’s audience of 852,000 last week when it was also simulcast on Gem.

Ten’s I’m A Celebrity, which was simulcast on One, delivered the network an audience of 620,000 metro viewers, according to preliminary overnight OzTam ratings. It was still down on last week’s audience of 698,000.

Both shows were out-rated by the ABC’s 7.30 which was watched by 724,000 viewers.

My Kitchen Rules easily won the 7.30pm timeslot, grabbing a metro audience of 1.49m viewers. Last week the show did not air on Thursday evening.

Nine only managed to grab an audience share of 16.3 per cent as the gap widens between it and Seven who won the night with a share of 25.3 per cent.

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Morning Update: Gatorade digital remasters ‘Be Like Mike’ after 23 years

AdWeek: Gatorade Digitally Remastered ‘Be Like Mike’ After 23 Years, and Damn Does It Hold Up

For those of us who’ve spent too many hours digging through YouTube trying to find good-looking versions of classic ads, this is quite a treat: As part of its 50th birthday celebrations, Gatorade has digitally remastered its classic “Be Like Mike” commercial with Michael Jordan after almost a quarter century.

And it really looks good. The old Bayer Bess Vanderwarker spot is completely cleaned up, so you can enjoy seeing Mike play cute pickup games with kids and laugh ridiculously with his actor-teammates like it’s 1992 all over again. (Except for that hashtag at the end!)

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ABCs: Frankie falls for the first time as teen titles bleed more readers

FrankieFrankie Magazine has seen its circulation drop away for the first time in the magazine’s history, while Dolly’s numbers dropped by 40 per cent according to the latest figures from the Audit Bureau of Circulations covering the six months ending in December 2014.

The title dropped from an average of 63,645 copies shifted a month over the same period last year to 61,427, a fall of 3.5 per cent. The previous two audits saw circulation gains of 4.4 per cent and 4.6 per cent respectively, with a circulation of 67,782 in the last audit of monthly magazines last year.

Frankie’s decline in circulation follows the Pacific Star Network (PSN) acquiring its publisher Morrison Media for $10m last November. The buyout followed on from the departure of the original co-founders of Frankie Press Lara Burke and Louise Bannister one year ago.

Frankie general manager Gaye Murray told Mumbrella that the publication had always known that it’s circulation would have ups and downs.

“We always anticipated, however, that our local copy sales could not increase forever,” she said in a statement.

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ABCs: Herald Sun is first title to see drop in digital subscribers

HunThe Herald Sun has become the first masthead to record a quarter-on-quarter decline in digital sales, newly released numbers reveal.

The News Corp title saw the number of subscribers to its paywall fall by 1.85% from 50,360 to 49,425, according to the Audit Bureau of Circulations data.

It was the first time that any Australian newspaper site’s audited paywall subscriber numbers have gone backwards, after it put up a paywall, compared to the previous quarter.

The Herald Sun's weekday paywall subscribers

The Herald Sun’s weekday digital subscriber numbers

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ABCs: Readers turn away from celebrity mags as Zoo Weekly continues to lead circ slide

NWWeekly celebrity magazines have seen circulation numbers continue to fall away in new circulation figures released this morning.

Bauer Media’s NW fared the worst amongst the celebrity titles, with its circulation sinking by 15 per cent. In 2013 the title shifted on average 86,077 copies a week which fell to 73,143 copies a week, according to the numbers from the Audit Bureau of Circulations which take in the months of October to December 2014.

Famous, owned by Pacific Magazines posted the greatest circulation decline amongst the weekly Pac Mag titles audited, down 14.5 per cent year-on-year, with the number of copies sold falling to 60,122 from 70,304 in the same period in 2013.

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Garnier Australia unveils campaign featuring The Project’s Carrie Bickmore

Garnier Australia has rolled out its first ads featuring ambassador Carrie Bickmore since the host of Ten’s The Project was named as the face of the brand in November last year.

Created by Publicis Mojo Melbourne, the campaign features Bickmore promoting the Garnier BB cream and the Nutrisse hair colour.

Garnier Australia marketing director Paul Hyde said: “Carrie is the perfect spokesperson for Garnier and we have had a fantastic time working together on the brand.  She has such a natural, honest and fun relationship with her audience in Australia, something really unique and accessible which made her a perfect fit to join the Garnier team.

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Skills shortage means adtech companies paying over the odds for ‘average talent’



The boss of one of Australia’s biggest programmatic advertising platforms has warned the over supply of advertising technology companies is leading to a skills shortage where agencies and clients are overpaying for “pretty average talent”.

Speaking at yesterday’s Mumbrella Programmatic for Marketers session in Sydney Kerry McCabe, managing director Asia Pacific at RadiumOne, argued the industry needed to do more to broaden the talent base in the programmatic advertising space.

“There are a thousand adtech companies in Australia,” said McCabe. “Its a pretty small market so there is this massive supply and demand issue. That leads to a situation where, not to mince words, there is a lot of money being paid for pretty average talent.”

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OMA boss ‘disappointed’ with growth of outdoor citing government regulation as an issue

The head of the outdoor Outdoor Media Association (OMA) has said she is “disappointed” with the growth of the outdoor market and set a target to grow the sector from $600m to $1 billion within three years.

However OMA head Charmaine Moldrich has expressed frustration with government regulation and a lack of “nimbleness” in the industry, which she says is holding back growth.

During a live hangout Moldrich covered the issues facing the industry including the rollout of digital, how it can sustain growth in a fragmenting media market, issues around what can be shown in outdoor ads and how the industry can inspire creativity from agencies and clients.

While growth in the industry has been significant, increasing ten per cent last year. Four years ago outdoor was worth $400 million and is now at $600 million, with market share growing from 3.5 to about 5 per cent, Moldrich said: “We are very ambitious, we hope to be a billion dollar industry within the next three years, and that’s what our challenge is, to convince the people who are buying form us how good the channel is. Read more »

Avengers star Chris Hemsworth promotes Foxtel movies

Foxtel’s Movie Channels has rolled out a new ad featuring actor Chris Hemsworth in which he reflects on the emotions that movies draw out of audiences.

It aims to highlight the range of movies accessible on the Foxtel platform.

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Australian Red Cross Blood Service hands creative account to Cummins & Partners

red bloodThe Australian Red Cross Blood Service has appointed Cummins & Partners as its creative agency following a pitch held late last year.

The service put the pitch out to market in June last year and is currently reviewing its media agency arrangements.

Adam Ferrier, chief strategy officer at Cummins & Partners, said: “The challenge of getting Australian’s to donate blood is a tough one. Everyone knows they should, but very few people actually do. Our behavior change methodology allowed us to get a strong understanding of the Red Cross Blood Services challenges and develop an idea we are extremely confident will work well.”

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APN media reveals 27 per cent underlying profit increase with ARN revenues up 18 per cent

APN Media has reported an increased underlying profit of  $75.2 million, an increase of 27 per cent on last year’s results the company revealed today. APN

The company which owns the Australian Radio Network (ARN) and various newspaper and advertising holdings, said earnings before interest taxes and depreciation were $164.1 million, up 1 per cent.

Revenue from continuing operations was up 3 per cent to $843.2 million for the year ending December 2014, although Australian print asset revenues were down 7 per cent to $202.1 million.

However, the strength of ARN and its ratings dominance in Sydney in particular through the Kiis FM and WSFM networks saw its revenues rise 18 per cent to $180.9 million Read more »

Foxtel shares first subscriber numbers since dropping prices last year

foxtellogo-234x108Foxtel’s subscriber base grew 4.7 per cent in the first half of the financial year with 118,000 more people joining the service, driven largely by the reduction in price and a focus on bundled services from 50 per cent owner Telstra.

However, Foxtel’s revenues were up just 1.2 per cent for the July to December half to $1.5bn, as declining ad revenues hit the broadcaster, with subscriptions revenue increasing by 2.9 per cent.

The telco’s half-yearly figures released today show the pay-TV giant has had some success in encouraging new members onto the platform after slashing prices in November as it faces challenges from a range of new streaming services.   Read more »

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