Morning Update: Heineken’s hilarious soccer prank; Guardian cuts 250 jobs; Indy hires writers to do native and content

Ad Week: Heineken Found the Perfect Victim for This Hilarious Soccer Prank

Yeah, pranks are a bit passé. But a good one is still plenty entertaining, and this Heineken stunt from Publicis Italy is worth it—because the victim, who awesomely thinks he’s the one being secretive, is so amusing to watch.

The setup is simple: Simone, a huge soccer fan, usually watches UEFA Champions League games with his buddies at home. But suddenly he finds himself in possession of a single ticket to the A.S. Roma-Real Madrid match on Feb. 17.

Guardian: Guardian Media Group to cut 250 jobs in bid to break even within three years

Guardian Media Group is planning to cut 250 jobs – including 100 in editorial – and to restructure the less profitable parts of the company in a bid to break even within three years.

As part of plans to cut operating losses, which amounted to £58.6m in the year to the end of March, the Guardian and Observer publisher is to give up its ambitions to turn the Midlands Goods Shed, a former train depot, into a large events space and will restructure the less profitable parts of the business.

Digiday: The Independent’s hiring writers to do both native ads and edit content

With its print papers ceasing production in the next two weeks, The Independent is being forced to quickly re-fashion itself as a pure digital-only business.

That means native ads, naturally. While other publishers have launched standalone in-house branded content units that report to the business side, The Independent is taking a somewhat unorthodox approach: It’s hiring editors and writers who will have both editorial and commercial responsibilities. The publisher is specifically looking for journalists who excel in categories like fashion and beauty, technology, film and TV, food and drink.

“The bottom line is, news brands have been creating content for years, and we need to shout loudly about our ability to do this, because others are eating our lunch,” said Jon O’Donnell, group commercial director of parent ESI Media, which also owns The Evening Standard newspaper.

Ad Age: 7-Eleven Seeks Sandwich Fans During March Madness

The latest chicken item with its own ad campaign is not from a restaurant.

7-Eleven on Thursday begins airing 15-second commercials with a basketball feel, aiming to get NCAA fans watching college hoops to think of the convenience chain as a place to go for hot food. One spot promotes the convenience chain’s new $1.99 chicken sandwich and another focuses on its steak and cheese melt sandwich.

7-Eleven, like supermarkets and other retailers, is expanding its lineup of prepared foods to appeal to on-the-go consumers.


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