NRMA uses viral car video as springboard for branded content campaign

NRMA has used a viral internet video as the springboard for a branded entertainment campaign which has taken the form a of Hollywood blockbuster.

The original video, Buy My Marina, was a slick advert designed by a car owner to sell their 1999 Holden Barina hatchback. The video became a web hit in July and has so far chalked up 1.24 million views.

The vehicle was bought by NRMA Insurance, with the proceeds going to Cancer Council Australia, which has now used the ad to launch Barinageddon, a spoof film trailer which sees the Barina transformed into a hi-tech machine.

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Woolworths uses Jamie Oliver for Aussie based Christmas campaign

Woolworths has brought its Christmas campaign back to Australia this year using Jamie Oliver to cook up a big barbecue set to a remix of the Fresh Food People song.

Last year’s Christmas campaign for the supermarket was the first appearance for the Oliver as brand ambassador cooking up an expat’s Christmas in London.

In the new campaign Oliver only speaks in the background, with a ‘rap’ over a remixed version of the jingle with the celebrity chef cooking fresh produce with members of Woolworths staff for a crowd.

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303Lowe hires Brad Morris as digital and innovation head

303Lowe has hired Brad Morris as its new managing partner for digital and innovation, replacing Brian Dargan who left to join Lavender.

The release: Read more »

JimJam hires DDI’s John Speers as it looks to conquer ‘wild west’ of communication

Speers

Speers

General manager of DDI Australia John Speers has left the agency to join his former DDB Sydney colleagues Andrew Crocker and Charlie Cook at creative outfit JimJam.

Speers had been running client services at DDI for the past six years, and joins Sydney-based JimJam as managing partner. The agency has also hired Dean Andrews from Paykel Media as managing director, with Speers saying having a media planning capability in house made it easier to co-ordinate creative executions across different disciplines.

“Over the last few years we’ve witnessed the wild west of communication, where many have been peddling silver bullets – new solutions promising everything,” said Speers. Read more »

B&T overtakes AdNews as highest-circulating marketing magazine

B&T magazine has overtaken AdNews as the highest circulating marketing title, according to new figures published by the Audited Media Association of Australia today.

According to the AMAA, B&T’s average print distribution over the six months up to September was 13,308. The increase came after the title reduced frequency and increased circulation.

During the circulation period B&T had previously claimed in its pages that each of its three editions – Apr/ May, Jun/ Jul and Aug/ Sep –  covered by the audit had circulations of 18,500.  However today’s audited B&T number for April to September was nearly 30 per cent lower than this claim. Read more »

Making journalists write native ads is a ‘mistake’ Mandarin editor warns publishers

L:R Nicole Sheffield, Kylie Rogers, Ian McClelland, Jason Whittaker

L:R Nicole Sheffield, Kylie Rogers, Ian McClelland, Jason Whittaker

The editor of new online publication The Mandarin has argued at a forum in Sydney that allowing journalists to write branded content is a “massive mistake”, which runs the risk of undermining reader confidence in publications and mastheads across various segments.

Speaking at during a sometimes heated discussion on the separation of sales and editorial at yesterday’s Publish Conference in Sydney former Crikey editor Jason Whittaker said he did not believe journalists should be allowed to write brand content or native advertising.

“Readers have to trust the byline,” said Whittaker. “If I have to figure out the byline and if there is a sponsor behind it then I am going to have a lot less trust in the byline.

“We did it initially and looking at content marketing, we had journalists writing some of the stuff, and we realised that it was a massive mistake. That said as the (journalism) job market gets increasingly harder people will put up their hands for those sort of roles.”

However Kylie Rogers, sales director of Mamamia, which allows journalists to write branded content, told the room it was something their writers were comfortable with doing. Read more »

Father Bob offer people chance to win guaranteed happiness in volunteering experiment

Cummins & Partners has created a new campaign for a new charitable project from Father Bob Maguire offering people the chance to win happiness – guaranteed, seeking to promote volunteering.

The new campaign for the Father Bob Foundation encourages people to make a donation at  winhappiness.com and tell the organisation ‘how they find happiness’, with winners receiving prizes from a flat screen TV, a five night stay with a “ritzy” hotel chain and a top prize of  ‘happiness guaranteed’ “Or more specifically the winner will be awarded a ‘Week volunteering in a Soup Kitchen’.”

The campaign is based on the insight – backed up by global studies – that people are happier when they give something,with the winner set to fill in happiness questionnaires before and after the stint volunteering.

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Seven’s audience share dips to 14.8 as Beauty and the Geek falls again

Thursday saw another depressed night in TV ratings with no show breaking the 900,000 viewers mark with reality show Beauty and the Geek tumbling to 496,000 viewers from 533,000 last week according to OzTam overnight metro ratings.

Whilst the dating show did rise to 528,000 for a second episode, the result saw Seven’s audience share drop to 14.8 per cent, however that was still enough to secure the biggest free-to-air broadcast second place behind Nine which had 17.9 per cent.

It was up against Kings Cross ER at 7.35pm on Nine, which had 726,000 viewers, and Big Brother which saw another slight audience decline at 8.35pm to 516,000.

The final episode of SBS One’s special event series First Contact was the 22nd most watched show with 399,000 viewers, up on the previous night’s 339,000, but down on the first night’s audience of 433,000.

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Taste.com.au and Sterling Publishing big winners at Excellence Awards

publishers Australia logoNewsLife Media’s Taste.com.au and Sterling Publishing were the big winners at the Publishers Australia Excellence Awards, with the recipe title taking out the top gong of the night.

Now in their 18th year, the Excellence Awards are the preeminent and longest running awards for the print and digital publishing industry recognising outstanding work by both large and smaller publishing companies.

Taste.com.au walked away with the coveted Publishers Australia Excellence Award in addition to winning  Multi-channel Brand of the Year and Website of the Year – Consumer.

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Morning update: Pizza Hut and Italians; most shared ads of 2014, Qatar goes for JWT

Adweek: Pizza Hut wants you to know Italians hate its pizza

There was a time when Pizza Hut was famous for deep-dish pies and a waiting list to be seated. Unfortunately, that was a long time ago. This week, the restaurant chain hauled a piping hot rebranding effort from the oven. It’s bubbling with the stuff you’d expect from a fiftysomething chain trying to attract twentysomething customers—new toppings, new sauces, new crusts and a new logo that’s ditched the red roof in favor of an actual pizza. The spruce-ups, marketing vp Jared Drinkwater told us, are “the biggest changes in the 56-year history of our brand.”

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Tablet publishing fails to create habit with readers due to less frequent publishing rate

(l-r) Zachary King, Marcelo Silva, Angela Clark, Martin Wanless on stage at Publish

(l-r) Zachary King, Marcelo Silva, Angela Clark, Martin Wanless on stage at Publish

Publications on a tablet struggle to create a reading or viewing habit with readers due to it often being a weekly or monthly cycle of new content, ABC’s director of innovation Angela Clark has said.

Speaking at the Publish conference in Sydney today, Clark suggested publishers utilising tablet apps for longer form content need to pair it with sites with a more frequent content cycle as a reminder to readers to check the content released less frequently.

“Even a weekly cycle it’s not a daily habit where you’re looking at news a few times a day,” Clark said on the ABC’s The Brief app. Read more »

UM CEO Mat Baxter: ‘Put procurement back in the box where they belong’

Baxter

From left: Karin Upton Baker, Hermes; Danny Bass, Group M; Mat Baxter, UM and Simon Davies, Bauer Media Group

Powerful marketing chiefs have the ability to “put procurement back in their box where they belong” but too few CMOs are rising up through the ranks to have such influence, UM chief executive Mat Baxter has said.

Speaking at the Publish conference in Sydney today, Baxter said it would be in “everyone’s interest” if procurement departments were only part of the process of selecting agencies “rather than the dominant part they are at the moment”.

The comments came in a wide-ranging panel discussion on the relationships between media buyers, publishers and marketers.

Baxter said boards, CFOs and procurement staff are increasingly demanding to see hard data when they buy advertising space. To that end, he urged publishers when pitching for business from media buyers to supply better metrics which can then be communicated by the agency to the client.

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Fairfax Media focuses on subscription business as source of revenue

Fairfax Media is turning to a subscriptions business as the media company looks to new revenue models following the decline in the print industry which has seen print publication circulation tumble, taking with it print advertising revenue.

Speaking at the Publish conference Fairfax CEO Greg Hywood stressed the company was in “really good shape” after severe cost cutting over the past three years, adding: “It’s not conventional wisdom that it’s in good shape, but it is in really great shape.”

HywoodHe said there had been a transformation in the business with changes in revenue streams, with subscriptions now making up around 50 per cent of revenue, stressing the company was now “debt free” after being $1bn in the red two years ago.

“If you look at the metro business now, when I first started the breakdown in revenue was 85 per cent advertising, 15 per cent subscription,” he said.

“Now it’s closer to 50:50. What you’re saying is there is a focus around building a subscription business.” Read more »

Click Frenzy advertising spend rises 40 per cent with clicks up 41 per cent

Click-frenzy-logo1-366x366Advertisers spent more than 40 per cent more on Click Frenzy this year than the 2013 event while the number of clicks climbed almost 42 per cent, figures have shown.

Cross-channel advertising platform Marin Software also reported an eight per cent lift in click through rates (CPR) while the cost per click hit 92 cents.

Marin Software APAC managing director Jay Revels said advertisers were better prepared this year after several businesses misjudged the interest of the past two years and websites crashed.

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Cummins & Partners wins Vodafone following pitch

VodafoneVodafone has appointed creative agency Cummins & Partners as its creative agency following a competitive pitch process.

Cummins & Partners beat out McCann Melbourne and JWT for the account, with Whybins\TBWA pulling out of the race earlier.

It is expected that Cummins & Partners will open a Sydney office to service the business.

Vodafone general manager of brand Nilanjan Sarkar said: “We are confident that Cummins&Partners will deliver a strong, differentiated and enduring creative platform for Vodafone’s brand in Australia

“This is an exciting time for the Vodafone brand in Australia following several years where our focus has very much been leveraging the $3 billion we have invested in our network. With the brand’s turnaround journey almost complete, we are now able to focus more on our strengths as a brand and what sets us apart from our competitors.”

Cummins & Partners have signed a four-year contract with the telco and will have full strategic and creative scope across all communications channels.

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Marketers ‘completely crazy’ for looking to web traffic as content marketing success metric

Screen Shot 2014-11-18 at 4.30.01 PMAustralia’s marketers have been labelled “completely crazy” by the founder of the Content Marketing Institute (CMI) after a study found that website traffic remained their key measurement of a successful content marketing strategy.

Joe Pulizzi said the measurement was “meaningless” and underlined the immaturity of content marketing.

Six out out 10 marketers in the CMI research – which questioned 251 Australian CMOs – said web traffic was key while less than half named conversion rates or sales as a pivotal ROI measurement.

“My main concern is the number one metric was web traffic. That is completely crazy as it means nothing,” Pulizzi said. “Content marketing is a very old discipline but it remains immature in Australia and all over the world.”

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Buzzfeed international boss: Uber controversy ‘will change way people think about us’

Buzzfeed's Scott Lamb speaking at today's Publish event in Sydney

Buzzfeed’s Scott Lamb speaking at today’s Publish event in Sydney

The international head of Buzzfeed says the recent international media controversy around Uber demonstrates that the social viral content website can deliver hard news and break global stories.

“This is a great example of the type of news BuzzFeed News goes after. Exclusives, scoops, things that no one else has and move the story forward,” Scott Lamb told Mumbrella at the sidelines of the Publish Conference, at Doltone House in Sydney.

“This story, in particular, is really going to change the way people think about Uber as a company but it is exactly the type of thing that the news side of Buzzfeed is trying to do,” he said, referring to a story published by Buzzfeed two days ago, which has caused a global media storm after it claimed Uber executives targeted the personal details of journalists who wrote unfavourable stories about the company. Read more »

Marketers being squeezed as companies seek short term results

LambroMarketing budgets are at risk of being cut as companies increasingly take a short term view and invest in quick sales rather than longer term growth strategies, the chief marketer of electronics giant LG has warned.

Lambro Skropidis told Mumbrella firms are becoming “beholden to shareholders” and looking for rapid results which can work against marketers.

The problem is being exacerbated as the tenure of chief executives and managing directors gets shorter resulting in a tendency to look towards shorter term wins “to get runs on the board”.

“Twenty years ago people were in their roles a lot longer and invested in the longer term. Today, people are managed more short term and increasingly companies are being asked to achieve short term deliverables,” he said.

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