Naked’s Nick Kavanagh
Naked Communications has been fired by the Labor Party after approaching media outlets and asking for free advertising and tailored editorial in exchange for an exclusive interview with PM Kevin Rudd.
Among the titles targeted with the offer was The Vine, which is owned by Fairfax Media. Fairfax Media’s Sydney Morning Herald broke the story today.
According to The Vine:
The briefing document carries Labor branding and sets out the conditions for the “Kevin interview”. A senior advertising executive described the considerations listed in the document as “gobsmacking”. It encouraged editors to do the following in exchange for 10 minutes “one-on-one” with Mr Rudd:
■ Provide free advertising space on websites/networks for youth-focused advertising (related to Labor’s election campaign).
■ Produce “entertaining content on the theme of the inadequacy of the Liberal NBN plan”.
■ Provide “inventory and/or editorial for campaign activity”.
■ Provide “access to pro-Labor or pro-NBN talent”.
The Vine said that after it declined the deal, Naked’s communications strategy director Nick Kavanagh emailed: “We have offered your organisation a unique opportunity [access to Mr Rudd] … yet you’re unable to provide us with any advertising support in return?”. He added that the potential “agreement was based on “partnership and as such, we expect both parties to extract the requisite value”.
Kavanagh appears to have deleted his LinkedIn profile in the last few hours, but cached information suggests he has been with Naked since 2011.
According to Fairfax, Naked also offered similar deals to Vice and Pedestrian.TV. Mumbrella has been told by Pedestrian.TV that they were not offered the same deal as The Vine and maintain they never received the briefing given to The Vine.
A statement to Mumbrella from the agency said:
“Naked was engaged by the ALP to work on a small project and are no longer working with them. Unfortunately the relationship has terminated due to some activity that took place which was not authorised by the ALP or part of the brief agreed by Naked management. We will not making any further comment at this stage and will be in touch if we have anything further to add.”
The controversy ends what had been a quieter period for the Enereo-owned agency. Naked was behind the Witchery “man in the jacket” media hoax in 2009. And in 2007 the agency was fired by client Diageo after then Naked boss Mat Baxter made comments about targeting binge drinkers.
Last year, Kavanagh recorded a video for Mumbrella360’s ChangeOneThing project in which he urged the industry to taker more risks. He said: “I’d like us to start celebrating and encouraging greater risk taking in this market. Australia should be a proving ground and a testing ground for creativity and risk in the region. But unfortunately we’re not working in the most progressive market.”
A spokesperson for Rudd told Mumbrella: “The actions of Naked Communications were conducted without the authority or knowledge of the Prime Minister, or his office.”
Labor national secretary George Wright, who will lead the party’s election campaign, told Mumbrella: “Naked Communications are no longer working on the ALP online campaign for the election. As I said yesterday the behaviour was not acceptable, and the document was not sighted by or authorised by the ALP, and certainly not by the PM’s office. No further comment will be made.”
Naked Communications are no longer working on the ALP online campaign for the election. As I said yesterday the behaviour was not acceptable, and the document was not sighted by or authorised by the ALP, and certainly not by the PM’s office. No further comment will be made.
Tim Burrowes and Nic Christensen
The full brief created by Naked Communications is below:
Source: Ad News
- Source: Ad News