A Mumbrella Christmas wrap of 2014’s best (and worst) festive ads

Are you struggling to feel festive? Then look no further as Mumbrella’s creative reporter Miranda Ward wraps up of how brands around the world have been promoting themselves this holiday season to inject a bit of cheer ahead of Christmas Day.

1. While it was hard to go past John Lewis’ effort this year, the favourite Christmas ad, in the Mumbrella office at least, was this one from Mulberry. It plays with the competitive nature of gift giving within families, with each family member attempting to one-up each other with its gifts with one lucky member receiving a puppy that waves and a unicorn, with both gifts being outrated by Grandma’s efforts. Read more »

Is the ad industry much of an industry at all?


For all the talk about collaboration, the advertising industry spends a lot time throwing stones at competitive rivals and the industry as a whole. As we approach 2015, Cummins&Partner’s Adam Ferrier argues it is time for the industry to work together toward some common outcomes. 

Bloomberg Business Week has just done something that no agency ever has – they published a list of the work from their rivals that had made them jealous – and all the other great stories other publications had written that they wish they had.

Why hasn’t this article been written by an agency in Australia? Read more »

Hollywood is missing a major revenue stream with its trailers

tyler greerWith 2015 set to be a year of blockbuster movies trailers are amassing millions of views. In this guest post Tyler Greer argues Hollywood is missing a trick by not attaching pre-roll ads to this premium shareable content.

Star Wars and Mad Max. Unless you had something more important to do, and it’s difficult to think of what that might have been, you’ll have joined the collective inhale of breath as the trailers for these two 2015 film releases went live recently. The bad news is that both movies are still months away. The good news is that Jar Jar Binks doesn’t seem to be present in either. Read more »

From Spreets to Tumblr: Yahoo!7 plots its future

It’s been a year since Ed Harrison quit his role heading Fairfax Media’s sales team to be CEO of Yahoo!7. As Harrison marks nine months in the role, he sits down with Nic Christensen to talk about where he sees the digital joint venture going.


The last couple of years have been challenging for Yahoo!7.

That might be why nine months into his role Ed Harrison, the third CEO of the digital joint venture between Yahoo! and Seven West Media in three years, wants to make it clear his approach is markedly different to his predecessors. Read more »

Mumbo Jumbo: Programmatic advertising

Nic HodgesProgrammatic. There are few buzzwords that have been thrown around with as much enthusiasm over the past few years. And there’s a good reason – programmatic advertising has arguably changed the face of digital media buying more than any other technology. But how exactly does programmatic work, what impact is it really having, and is a programmatic robot going to steal your job? Nic Hodges explains. Read more »

Australian media passes its big test

Tim BurrowesOverall, Australia’s media outlets did themselves proud in one of their most challenging days, argues Mumbrella’s Tim Burrowes   

In its 58 years, there will have been few days as tough for the Seven Network as yesterday.

Thrown into live programming moments after the Sydney siege began opposite its Martin Place studios, the network’s team barely put a foot wrong in the rolling coverage which as I write has now been going for 24 hours. Even after having to evacuate its newsroom, Seven kept it together.

The first test came just 60 seconds into that broadcast. Read more »

Q&A: how the Sydney siege was reported by the public and news professionals

julie posetti Australian media academic Julie Posetti watched the coverage of the tragic Sydney siege break on Twitter late at night from Paris, where she is on secondment from the University of Wollongong as a Research Fellow with the World Association of News Publishers and the World Editors Forum. Here she discusses the way the drama was reported in a cross-posting from The Conversation.

1. How did you follow the drama as it developed? Read more »

The un-negotiated contract: Why the fight for access to data and information has never mattered more


The media model has been rewritten in the past decade, but Chris Stephenson asks should the industry do more to make sure the consumer is on board with it.

At some point in the last decade a long-established contract between people, media and brands fundamentally changed. What is gradually and incrementally replacing it is an un-negotiated contract – in which information is the new currency, insights and utility are the new value, and the fight for the control of data -whether you realise it or not – is one in which you are already engaged.

Read more »

The ad industry need to embrace its incompetence to get better

eaon pritchard red jelly planner stragetyIn this guest post Eaon Pritchard examines the phenomenon of incompetent people not realising how bad at something they are, and applies it to advertising.

You may be familiar with the case of one McArthur Wheeler. Wheeler was a man who, in 1995, proceeded to rob two banks in Pittsburg, in broad daylight, using no other method to avoid detection other than covering his face with lemon juice.

As lemon juice is usable as invisible ink, Wheeler was certain that it would render his own face invisible, and therefore prevent his face from being recorded by the surveillance cameras. Read more »

Australia eyes missing billions with very own ‘Google tax’

Anthony TingAfter the Australian Tax Office yesterday announced it was investigating several multinationals for tax minimisation Antony Ting examines what a ‘Google tax’ would mean for Australia in this cross-posting from The Conversation.  

Joe Hockey has hinted he may introduce a “Google tax” as a new weapon to tackle profit shifting by multinational enterprises. The Treasurer’s suggestion is not only political as a counter to aggressive tax avoidance by multinationals, but also suggests the government may not have full confidence in a successful outcome of the G20/OECD work on base erosion profit shifting (BEPS). Read more »

Mumbrella is six – Now we’ve got a history

Tim BurrowesToday marks Mumbrella’s sixth birthday. Tim Burrowes has a progress update.

A couple of months back, I realised the way I look at my time with Mumbrella is changing.

Until recently, Mumbrella existed for me in only one tense – something I do. Nowadays, it’s also something I did.

At six years, we’ve now been doing Mumbrella for long enough that we’ve got a history. And part of that is that once a year, I offer you, our reader,  some kind of a birthday update. Read more »

Why random #hashtags fail in marketing campaigns

Screen Shot 2014-12-02 at 5.31.04 PMWhile marketers are increasingly looking for social media ready ideas, simply adding a hashtag to your campaign is not the answer argues Luke Ryan.

Ever wondered why no one is using your well-crafted hashtag for your new campaign? This might help.

Nearly every marketing campaign that goes out the door these days contains a hashtag, but hardly any of them have real purpose. It’s almost like marketers are being pressured into making their traditional marketing campaigns “more social”. But let’s be real, this is not getting the job done.

Read more »

Zombie metrics: why Australian cinema just won’t stay dead

In this cross-posting fromThe Conversation Deb Verhoeven of Deakin University argues rumours of the death of Australian cinema based on box office are premature, and we should be using another method to measure success. 

By all reports the Australian cinema is dead. Left for dust by the noisy distractions of big budget movie franchises and the smaller diversions of teeny shiny devices. Read more »

Microsoft’s head of search David Pann on how Bing is taking on Google

David PannDavid Pann is the general manager of Microsoft’s global search business, the Yahoo Bing Network.

In this interview with Mumbrella Asia editor Robin Hicks Pann talks about why Bing is a better deal than Google for advertisers, how to win customers in a market dominated by one player, and how the future of search will be won.

You’ve been on global ‘listen and learn tour’ of 35 countries to meet with customers. What are the pain points your customers have with Bing? Read more »

About Mumbrella’s 2015 Kickstart Week (and the marketing problem we’re trying to solve)

tim burrowes landscapeMumbrella today launches its Kickstart 2015 Week. Tim Burrowes explains.   

Pinch punch, first of the month…

So you may have seen the news story we’ve just posted about our 2015 Kickstart Week.

Today we drop the paywall for The Source. Tomorrow, we launch Summer School. And on Wednesday, we do something special around next year’s Mumbrella360.

It’s a bit like the world’s most boring advent calendar, isn’t it?


But I’ll let you into a secret. While our purpose is – as always – to help our audience in their working lives and careers – there’s an ulterior motive. Read more »

Is it the media, politicians or consumer who’s to blame for today’s vanilla politics?

patrick o'beirneWhile many bemoan the lack of personalities in state and federal politics, Patrick O’Beirne asks whether it’s the product of the 24-hour news cycle or the media habits of consumers.

At a Melbourne Press Club  function on the eve of the Victorian state election, The Australian’s local bureau chief Chip Le Grand asked Premier Denis Napthine where the charisma has gone in Victorian politics.

The Premier, straying from his well-rehearsed script of policy commitments, shot back. Hard. “Where has the charisma gone?…I would ask you to look in the mirror. I think one of the reasons why there is perhaps a lack of charisma or lack of fun in politics is because of the coverage.”

Read more »

A return to full service? What is M&C Saatchi’s plan in supercharging its strategy unit?

M&C Saatchi now has one of the biggest strategy departments in Australia as it moves to a more ‘full service’ approach for brands. Miranda Ward sat down with the agency’s head of strategy Justin Graham to talk through the strategy behind it.

M&C Saatchi has made no secret of the fact it has been beefing up its strategy and planning department over the last 12 months, however many in the industry were surprised to hear the agency’s latest hire, Ross Berthinussen as group strategy director, had swelled the ranks of the team to 35. It’s a move which has many wondering whether the agency is looking to put the genie back in the bottle and go ‘full service’.

“If clients are coming to us to solve business problems we want to be able to solve whatever problem that may be through the lens of creativity,” said department head Justin Graham. Read more »

The Arias: red carpet winners and awards night losers on brand integration

Miranda WardThe telecast of the Aria Awards showed how good, and bad, brand integration can be argues Miranda Ward. 

Last night’s Aria Awards might not have delivered a ratings win for the Ten Network, with only 574,000 metro viewers tuning in for the two-and-a-half hour show, however its red carpet special was largely a boon for brands and network talent. Read more »

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