How’s your corporate karma?

Jaid Hulsbosch

After recently giving up some time to mentor students Jaid Hulsbosch asks why the industry isn’t doing more to help nurture future talent. 

A recent opportunity to reflect didn’t involve a spiritual retreat or a bucket list review or a winter mood rebalance at a luxe resort. It simply provided a time to reassess one of the edicts of good karma and a recommitment to ‘giving back’ to the industry for a purposeful corporate journey. Read more »

Q&A with BBH China’s Johnny Tan

Tan speaking at Spikes AsiaBBH China chief creative officer Johnny Tan sat down with Miranda Ward at Spikes Asia to discuss the need for creative nuance in China, the overuse of the word content, risk averse clients causing scam and how hard it is to find staff with talent.  

How can international or Australian brands flourish in China?

I think from an advertising standpoint the most important thing is for brands to stay curious about this culture and be respectful about it.

I’ve worked on many global brands where they’re from the perspective of New York or London or even in this region, and far too often there are people who still talk about ‘one size fits all’, ‘why can’t we just re-cast in Asians but in the same spot?’ Or ‘oh yeah, this is a universal truth it will work everywhere’. No it isn’t, the nuances are so different. Read more »

The latest DrinkWise ad is a beer commercial, not public health message

michael thorn

The latest responsible drinking campaign from DrinkWise is a cleverly disguised beer ad, not a public health message, argues FARE’s Michael Thorn.

The alcohol industry’s latest beer advertisement masquerading as a public health message was created, according to DrinkWise, ‘to promote a safer healthier drinking culture by keeping the event the focus, not the drinking’.

Perhaps something was lost in translation, although this seems unlikely with one of the country’s smartest ad agencies, Clemenger BBDO on the job. More likely, DrinkWise, an industry financed and controlled body, just couldn’t help themselves. Read more »

Video is no replacement for good strategy

Screen Shot 2014-09-24 at 1.44.12 pmToo often CMOs think of video as some sort of magic solution when really they should approach the investment required with caution argues Adam Woods.

A hush falls over the boardroom as the CMO delivers his six-months-in-the-making strategy; a strategy, if rumours are to be believed, that will revolutionise the way business is done and, in one fell swoop, drag the company kicking and screaming into the modern marketing era. Read more »

Why size doesn’t matter

John PrestonMedia agencies, be they independent or multinational, are often very focused on the size of their overall billings. Match Media founder John Preston argues that the industry’s preoccupation with billings is unhelpful, particularly within the independent media agency space.

There appears to be a fair amount of preoccupation at the moment around size… i.e. size of billings rather than the quality of work created. And, the size of billings seems to be a shout-out from some media independents. Read more »

Where does Campaign Brief stand on scam?

tim burrowes landscape

Michael Lynch, boss of industry website Campaign Brief has questions to answer with agencies about his true position on scam, argues Mumbrella’s Tim Burrowes.    

It can get a little boring when the trade press writes about itself, so my apologies if you find what follows a little tedious.

Doubly so, if you feel we’ve been writing too much about the topic of scam.

This morning I find myself the subject of some media coverage (if you count an item in the diary section of The Australian and a follow-up on Campaign Brief). Read more »

What Australia’s fake, formulaic and contrived work could learn from the humanity of Africa

pat-baronAustralia’s “fake, formulaic and contrived” creative work could learn a few things from the insight-driven cream of African advertising, argues Pat Baron.  

I’ve just had the privilege and pleasure of spending a week of 14-hour working days poring over the most creative and effective work created in Africa and the Middle East, as Jury Chairman at The Loeries, Africa’s largest brand communication awards. The contrasts with our work here in Australia – and the lessons for marketers and agencies alike – are profound. Read more »

What goes into making an AFL Club’s ‘brand’?

Screen Shot 2014-09-19 at 11.37.23 AMWith the AFL finals in full swing, Team Epic head of strategy Tony McKay looks at why some clubs are always in the news, irrespective of their performances, while others fade from the headlines.

Why are some AFL clubs always in the news, seemingly always relevant and contributing to the footy story, regardless of on-field performance week-to week? And yet other clubs seem to almost disappear as soon as the losses outnumber the wins?

Look at the Western Bulldogs and St Kilda in 2014. Poor performers, yes, but also largely anonymous. When did you last hear a spirited footy discussion about either club? What’s their brand story at the moment?

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Is wearable tech an opportunity for pharma to be more caring?

Peita PaceyWith wearable tech set to burgeon Peita Pacey takes a look at the opportunities which are presenting themselves in the healthcare sector for brands.

In the olden days, you know like 5 years ago, when people felt ill or just not quite ourselves they went to the doctors. Nowadays their usual first point of call is to contact Dr Google, who is most likely helpful enough to diagnose them with a rare form of incurable cancer at which they run screaming from our screens into the waiting room of an actual doctor who rolls their eyes and prescribes us with some R&R. Read more »

Credit where it’s due: Margaret and David – bringing the curtain down


After yesterday’s announcement the ABC is wrapping At the Movies at the end of the year we give Credit Where its Due to one of the longest on-screen partnerships in Aussie TV, Margaret and David.

As Margaret always acknowledged, they were like an old married couple, but without the sex. Quarrelling, bickering and occasionally agreeing. But it was all done with mutual respect and genuine affection.

We refer, of course, to Margaret Pomeranz and David Stratton, known by movie fans across Australia simply as Margaret and David. Surnames were rendered superfluous for two of TV’s most respected and popular presenters. Read more »

Bitter tweet: defamation in social media

stephen von muensterAhead of a video hangout on Wednesday answering your legal questions Stephen von Muenster looks at how defamation law is evolving in social media.

140 defamatory characters posted in the Twitter-sphere could cost tens of thousands of dollars in damages, the New South Wales District Court has held. The case reignites the complexities of defamation law in a world where everyone is a publisher and information is disseminated across the globe at the click of a button.
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Why ‘free’ will eventually cost you

andrew-hughes-1309497218Modern marketing is taking services and products that used to be free and adding subtle charges for them, argues Andrew Hughes of the Australian National University in a cross-posting from The Conversation.

Remember the days when free really was free? When reading a news article to the end didn’t mean having to get over, around or through a paywall. Or when loyalty schemes actually rewarded loyalty with decent rewards, not “spend $200 get a $20 reward voucher that can only be spent with us”. Read more »

Credit where it’s due: Devondale – brave and bold marketing to build a brand

credit where its due logoIn a new column Mumbrella celebrates the best people and work in the industry. Today we recognise dairy brand Devondale for its work with creative agency DDB which saw the brand revitalise a tired sector.

Devondale logo

It’s a common moan from creatives in Australia there aren’t many clients willing to take a risk with their brand due to the grip of a conservative corporate culture. But one brand which has given its agency free-reign to push boundaries, and reaped the rewards, is Devondale. Read more »

Has social media failed e-commerce?

Peter Cassidy

Following the launch of Twitter’s “Buy” button earlier this week, Peter Cassidy, co-founder of Stackla, examines how social media drives potential consumers to retail websites.

The success and rapid adoption of social media made it inevitable that businesses would look to social to drive online sales.

New social platforms came with the promise of unprecedented reach, providing retailers with the means to drive swarms of qualified prospects to their websites.

The truth of course, is that social media didn’t deliver on the promise. Read more »

The new iPhones may not be revolutionary, but they are refining the experience

Jason Deacon DTWith the launch of two new iPhones today DT’s Jason Deacon says Apple has done the job of redefining mobile experiences.

When you pick up a phone in a store the first thing that grabs your attention is the display. It’s the feather fascinator on a Melbourne Cup goer. The ‘new and improved’ sticker on your washing detergent. The hundreds and thousands on white bread. Read more »

Social media influence is a fallacy

eaon pritchard red jelly planner stragetyFollowing yesterday’s opinion piece on the power of social media ambassadors yesterday Eaon Pritchard argues the idea of influencers is actually flawed.

The idea that brands can pick out and target a small group of social media users with large ‘followings’ and then imagine that they will reach everyone else with their message is still prevalent however this influencer theory is a myth and its protagonists have got things the wrong way round. Read more »

Credit where it’s due – Lee Lin Chin, a newsreader with gravitas and comedy genius

Screen Shot 2014-09-08 at 1.19.14 PMIn a new column Mumbrella celebrates the best people and work in the industry. Today we salute 20-year SBS veteran Lee Lin Chin, who traverses the serious world of news with a more light-hearted approach.

There aren’t many newsreaders who can successfully make the leap to light entertainment, but Lee Lin Chin can put that feather in her cap.

Not content with being a mainstay on the po-faced SBS World News since 1992, Lee Lin has been engaging and delighting a younger audience with her regular appearances on SBS2’s The Feed. Read more »

The power of cool and product placement in social media

Richie MeldrumProduct placement is infiltrating social media influencers, but how long will it be before the platforms come for their piece of the pie asks Richie Meldrum?

Beauty and popularity have always gone hand in hand. If you think back to the most popular kid at your school, chances are, he or she was blessed with nice hair, clear skin and fortuitous features. Call it natural selection if you like, but the cool kids have courted the attention and admiration of their peers in a relationship dynamic that’s been going on as long as anyone can remember.

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