Department of Communications scales back dramatic job cuts

Department of CommunicationsThe federal Department of Communications is understood to have dramatically reined back major cuts that had been expected to see as many as 125 of the 550 positions within the department go.

Mumbrella understands only around 20 positions have so far been made redundant after the Community and Public Sector Union (CPSU) pushed the department to abandon a proposal made in February for a department wide “spill and fill”, which would have forced all employees to reapply for their positions.

The department looks after areas including online security and safety, the NBN and policy governing TV and radio broadcast licenses.

The full job cuts within the department will not be completed until September, but it has chosen only to conduct the “spill and fill” with middle management positions at the public service rankings of EL1s and EL2s. The Australian public service grades all staff, with ELs representing middle management, APS representing junior staff and senior management at SES level.

CPSU deputy national president Alistair Waters told Mumbrella:  “We told Communications that a spill and fill was a divisive process that does not help staff/management relations in the long run. Read more »

Google the ‘most influential brand in Australia’ says Ipsos survey, as Woolies edges out Coles

google logoGoogle is the most influential brand in Australia, with its ability to alter how people “shop, think, act and behave” placing it ahead of other companies, according to a new survey.

Ipsos Australia quizzed 1,000 people with the search engine giant edging out Microsoft and Facebook. Woolworths was voted more influential than fierce rival Coles, with the supermarket brands fourth and sixth respectively. EBay completed the top five.

Ipsos marketing managing director Gillian O’Sullivan said the survey, the first Ipsos has carried out in Australia, measured five factors:  engagement, trustworthyness, corporate citizenship, leading edge and presence.

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Nunn Media Sydney makes first hire, picking up Harvey Norman digital ads boss

David SpasovicThe newly opened Sydney division of independent media agency Nunn Media has made its first hire, picking up David Spasovic who previously headed all digital media spending for retailer Harvey Norman.

Spasovic joins Nunn as the agency’s digital manager and follows the decision of ex-Quantium Principal and Mindshare CEO Chris Walton to buy-in to the largely Melbourne based operation and launch a new Sydney office.

“There are some interesting and exciting developments happening at Nunn which warranted taking on someone of David’s background and experience.  His focus on search and online marketing from a retailer’s point of view will prove very useful indeed,” said Walton. Read more »

Best Jobs marketer sets off on next venture: lawn bowls in a coach

One of the marketers behind Tourism Queensland’s Best Jobs in the World campaign is aiming to smash a world record with his latest marketing brainwave as he continues to lead the rebirth of domestic coach tour operator AAT Kings.

Anthony Hayes was instrumental in the Best Jobs campaign when he was chief executive at Tourism Queensland, a campaign that was bought to life by CumminsNitro. It was lauded as a huge success winning dozens of awards internationally, and was estimated to have generated $200 million worth of media coverage for the tourism body.

Now chief executive at AAT Kings, which offers coach holidays and day trips across Australia and New Zealand, Hayes came up with a plan to strip seats from a coach and turn into a mobile lawn bowls green.

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Australian Physio Association recruits Dave Hughes to front ‘Tradies National Health Month’

The Australian Physiotherapy Association (APA) is targeting tradies in a new campaign encouraging them to be more away of their health and safety at work.

Fronted by Dave Hughes, the online video is part of a campaign for “Tradies National Health Month” an initiative launched by the APA and its partner Steel Blue last year. It sees Hughes saying comments along the theme of “shit tradies never say”.

Read more »

Twitter hires The Walkley Foundation’s Flip Prior as media and government liaison

Screen Shot 2014-08-05 at 11.05.02 AMThe Australian office of social media platform Twitter has hired The Walkley Foundation’s Flip Prior for the newly created position of news and government partnerships manager.

Prior who is currently communications and partnerships manager for the Walkleys, which runs Australia’s major excellence in journalism awards, will now be responsible for helping media organisations and parts of government get to grips with the social platform and helping them integrate the medium into their operations.

“Flip will be leading Twitter Australia’s efforts to build partnerships with news organisations, journalists and politicians to help them harness the unprecedented ability to deliver news or updates to their followers as it happens,” said Danny Keens, director of media for Twitter Australia, who oversees the company’s outreach in politics, media and sport.
Read more » launches in Australia with animated campaign

Comparison website has launched in the Australian car insurance market, promoting itself with an animated campaign highlighting how the website works.

Created by animators The Magnificent Itch, the ad sees a cartoon man – ‘Colin Compare’ – navigating his way around the website.

Natalie Ball, director, said: “We are entering a competitive market with big players that plough through vast sums of money advertising their brands and needed to be clever about our marketing.

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IPG folds Airborne into Ensemble to create new full service creative agency

Justin Ricketts

Justin Ricketts

Creative agency Airborne has been folded into fellow IPG Mediabrands agency Ensemble, as the group looks to reposition the branded content agency as a full service creative outfit.

CEO Justin Ricketts said: “We’ve effectively taken two highly creative businesses and merged them to create a new and more powerful proposition. It is a genuine case of one plus one equalling three – with the all of the complimentary services previously offered under Airborne now fitting under the Ensemble brand.”

Airborne’s management team of Scott Player and Kristy Player have moved into the new offering with Scott taking the COO role and Kristy head of design, while all the staff from the two agencies will be retained. They already share office space in Sydney.

The move comes just a few weeks after IPG-owned creative agency FCB shut its doors in Australia, folding its clients and staff into independent agency AJF Partnership, a move IPG says was made by FCB’s global management. It is understood the Airborne brand will disappear from the market.

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Telstra move on from celebrity-fronted campaign with spot playing with unexpected upgrades

Telstra is promoting its ‘Telstra Upgrade’ offer with a new campaign which focuses on the idea that everyone loves an unexpected upgrade.

Created by DDB, the spot sees a group of five hail a taxi in the rain, when a standard taxi pulls over one of the group expresses concern that there’s five of them however the leader of the group sticks his head into the taxi to discover the inside is a large limo.

It ends with the tagline ‘Everyone loves an upgrade’ and features Iggy Azalea’s song ‘Fancy’.

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The Block draws 1.112m to help Nine win the night, while Ten’s audience share falls post Games

the block glasshouseLast night bathroom renovations saw The Block Glasshouse once again win the night as the most watched non news program of the night helping Network Nine to a narrow win over rival Seven, with a main channel audience share of 22 per cent compared with 21.2 per cent in the metropolitan cities.

However, Network Ten’s audience has fallen with the conclusion of competition at The Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, yesterday’s broadcast of the closing ceremony drew 148,000 viewers for the live 5.30am showing and 209,000 viewers for a special repeat at 9.30pm last night.

The result was Ten had an audience share of 10.4 per cent on its main channel down from 25.1 per cent last week when it had the Games and the finale of Masterchef, while multi-channel One went from 6.9 per cent to 2.4 per cent.  Read more »

Seven confirms rights to broadcast next three Olympics across all platforms

sevenSeven has confirmed it has bought the rights to broadcast the next three Olympics across free-to-air, subscription TV, digital platforms and on radio.

The agreement, which was rumoured last month, will see the network cover the Rio Games in 2016, the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang in 2018 and the Games in Tokyo in 2020. It also includes highlights coverage of the summer youth Olympics which begins in Nanjing later this month.

Under the deal, Seven also has options to extend the rights to broadcast the Winter Olympics in 2022 and the Games in 2024.

Although no price was disclosed, it is believed to be in the region of $200 million, and Seven West Media chief executive Tim  Worner said its monetization of the deal will start immediately.

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Aussie film These Final Hours fails to find an audience on opening weekend

Australian movie These Final Hours made a disappointing debut in the local box office over the weekend grabbing just $206,727 despite showing on 164 screens across the country.

The film, directed by Zac Hilditch, has been critically acclaimed winning the critics prize at the Melbourne Film Festival last year and was selected for the Directors’ Fortnight in Cannes,  but failed to make an impact on audiences with the Village Roadshow film taking an average of just $1,260 per screen across the weekend.

It focuses on a young man on the last day on earth who is off to enjoy the party to end all parties, but instead winds up saving a little girl, and finding the road to redemption.

The film launch was supported with an ambitious interactive marketing campaign led by Soap Creative.

The film could not match Hollywood blockbuster Lucy starring Scarlett Johansson which took in $4.66m across 318 screens in its opening weekend. Read more »

Live blog: Monday, August 4

Welcome to Mumbrella’s live blog, our daily roundup of what’s happening in media and marketing.

Top Stories:

5:08pm - Those folk from A Rational Fear have been at it again, this time making a spoof ad for Tony Abbott’s new ‘Green Army’ initiative.

4:04pm - There’s a bit of new creative around this afternoon, including a new ad from AAMI showing there are easier ways to save money than sharing a bath with your parents, and Sportsbet solving a punter’s problem with a clingy girlfriend.

12.10pm - Former Grey Melbourne general manager Randal Glennon and creative director Nigel Dawson have teamed up to launch independent communications consultancy Three Wise Men. Read about it here. 

11.40am - Breaking news Mi9 CEO Mark Britt is to depart. Mumbrella can reveal that he will be replaced by Alex Parsons CEO from Ratecity. Full story here.  Read more »

AAMI suggest there are easier ways to save then sharing bathwater with your parents in new ad

AAMI is focusing on ways to save in a campaign for its Flexi Premiums which features a family of three sharing the same bathwater in an effort to tighten the purse strings.

Created by Ogilvy Melbourne, the ad sees an adult son forced to bathe after his father while his mother patiently awaits her turn, ending with the tagline “There are easier ways to save”.

Read more »

Sportsbet promotes app as solution to problems faced by punters

Sportsbet is promoting its new mobile betting app with a new campaign which presents it as a solution to various problems faced by punters trying to get a bet on.

Created by Ralphsmith Communications, the ‘Faster-er, Easier-er, Better-er’ campaign sees men faced with problems including low battery and a clingy hand-holding girlfriend as they try to get their bets in.

The ad showcases how the app is fast enough to use even when faced with one per cent battery life on your mobile and how easy it is to use, even when you’ve only got on hand free.

Read more »

Ex-Grey GM and CD Randal Glennon and Nigel Dawson team up to launch Three Wise Men

threewisemen logoFormer Grey Melbourne general manager Randal Glennon and creative director Nigel Dawson have teamed up to launch independent communications consultancy Three Wise Men.

The third “wise man” is an unnamed silent agency partner and provides the premises and physical production resources and back end support to the new venture, which comes after Glennon and Dawson were let go from Grey Melbourne following the loss of the Transport Accident Commission (TAC) account.

Dawson and Glennon

Dawson and Glennon

“We could all thank TAC for finally getting us off our fat asses to finally do this,” quipped Dawson. “We’ve had endless conversations over the years about wanting to do our own thing given our experience and what we’ve done over the years and in fact it’s finally what happened earlier this year with TAC that forced the issue.”

Glennon had been with Grey as general manager for 13 years while Dawson had spent just over 17 years with Grey as a creative director. Read more »

Arnie’s adverts ‘memorable and slightly disruptive’, says marketing chief

Property business has said a desire to create a “memorable and unexpected” marketing campaign was behind its decision to use Arnold Schwarzenegger to front the repositioning of the brand.

The Hollywood star will feature in seven TV adverts, the first of which aired last night, along with digital and print material over the next 12 weeks.

In the campaign, Schwarzenegger confuses Australia for Austria and, accompanied by hapless assistant Dylan, goes through a comedy or errors in his quest to find the perfect home. group manager marketing strategy Natalie Feehan described the multi-million dollar campaign as “disruptive” in that it goes against the traditionally conservative advertising undertaken by most property businesses.

“We wanted to create something memorable and unexpected and that was slightly disruptive,” she said. “What you usually see from real estate websites in terms of advertising  is fairly predictable. We wanted to do something that was unique and engaging. It’s more than just a TVC. There are many layers and the content is rich and deep. The advert that screened yesterday is just the start of the story. It will get funnier and funnier over the next few months.”

Read more »

BBC First launches on Foxtel with UKTV moving to basic package

BBC First BBC First formally launched on Foxtel last night as part of a broader change in programming that also sees Lifestyle Food and Lifestyle Home and documentary channel Crime + Investigation added to the basic subscription package.

Ahead of the changes Foxtel last month moved UKTV from being a premium channel to the basic subscription package as it moves the majority of its premium new content to the new channel, with a few shows still screening first on UKTV.

Ed Smith, Foxtel Executive Director of Sales and Marketing, said: “BBC First has been eagerly anticipated among subscribers and is a fantastic new channel to round out our Foxtel Play offering.” Read more »

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