Morning update: Cookie Monster chats with Siri: Half China’s adspend heads online; Universal slammed for racial profiling Compton campaign

Ad Week:

Apple didn’t use celebrities in its early iPhone advertising, preferring product demos that showed what the device could actually do. That’s all changed in recent years, of course—as Apple learned to love a little star power, beginning withSamuel L. Jackson and Zooey Deschanel in 2012.

Now, the latest iPhone 6 spot from TBWA\Media Arts Lab stars a beloved nonhuman celeb: Cookie Monster from Sesame Street, who chats with Siri—and uses the phone’s timer and plays music, hands free—as he waits, agonizingly, for some cookies to bake.

Adage: Half of China’s Ad Spending Will Go Toward the Internet This Year, GroupM Says

A report from GroupM shows just how fast China’s advertisers are moving their budgets into the digital space. Five years ago, the internet accounted for only 14.8% of the country’s total ad spend; this year it’s expected to take 49.7%.

China is well ahead of the global average on that front. WPP’s GroupM has forecast that 31% of worldwide ad budgets this year will go to online. Advertisers in China are taking cues from how quickly consumers have embraced the online world, especially mobile phones, for streaming videos and movies online, shopping from Alibaba’s e-commerce empire and using all-purpose app WeChat to communicate, book services and pay household bills.

Barbara Lippert Madblog: Averting The Apocalypse: JWT’s ‘Rape Guy’ Resigns

So J. Walter Thompson CEO Gustavo Martinez, who’s enmeshed in an ongoing harassment suit, has resigned. The news was announced Thursday, March 17, by WPP. He’ll be replaced by Tamara Ingram, most recently chief client team officer at WPP.

Hallelujah. In showing Martinez to the nearest exit, the holding company has come a long way, baby — maybe about 60 years in 24 hours?

Its initial reaction was chillingly sexist and straight out of the Sterling Cooper playbook: After JWT’s chief communications officer Erin Johnson’s lawsuit was filed on Feb. 25, she was sent home on leave and hung out to dry. As for Martinez, JWT was quick to circle the wagons once Johnson’s suit went viral, with the CEO aggressively denying the “outrageous claims” and looking forward to his day in court.

Digiday: Universal slammed for making different ‘Straight Outta Compton’ trailers on Facebook

Universal Pictures is being accused of “whitewashing” its “Straight Outta Compton” trailers it showed on Facebook.

To promote the theatrical release of the movie, Universal served a targeted trailer to “non-black and non-Hispanic” users that almost completely removed mention of N.W.A, the rap group the entire movie revolves around. Rather, that demographic’s trailer focused just on Ice Cube and Dr. Dre because the studio believed they were more familiar with them.

The revelation came during a South by Southwest panel featuring Universal’s evp of digital marketing Doug Neil, who revealed how the company marketed the movie using Facebook’s analytics tools. While the social network doesn’t directly allow brands to direct ads based on race, it can target certain demographics based on habits, likes and what they’re interested in seeing.



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