Spotlight on…Newspaper Creative

This being an Olympic year, I decided to institute the Olympics of newspaper advertising. You know, take ads from papers around the world (all appearing on the same day - level playing field and all that) and let them go head-to-head...

This being an Olympic year, I decided to institute the Olympics of newspaper advertising. You know, take ads from papers around the world (all appearing on the same day – level playing field and all that) and let them go head-to-head for gold, silver and bronze.

A noble experiment. And a bit of fun, too.

1. FRANCE: The Economist

Gold. The translation of the line goes "Everything is not black and white." And the background colour – red – is The Economist magazine’s banner colour. In all fairness, this French ad probably wasn’t conceived in France. Rather, it’s part of a long-running campaign created by Abbott Mead Vickers Advertising in the U.K. Like every execution I’ve seen for The Economist, it is simple and to the point, but still clever. A nice effort for the French team with the English coach.

2. UK: Fiat

Bronze. This is one of the most offensive ads I’ve ever seen. But then, you have to consider where I saw it – in the London Sun. A newspaper with page three nudie girls and headlines like "Chomp chomp…Football star eats Queen’s terrier." This is not a newspaper read by women, or by men with two eyebrows. So kudos to the agency for coming up with the perfect ad for the medium. And hats off to a very, very, very brave client.

3. Germany:

Last place, but winner of the popularity contest. Hey, every Olympics has its Jamaican bobsled team, its Eddie the Eagle. This is the Eddie of our newspaper Olympics – an ad by a client who loved his name and had no idea that the paper was distributed outside the Vaterland. This ad begs the eternal question: If Wacker didn’t know how to get off a horse, would you help Wacker off?

4. US: Pocket PC

Disqualified after steroid testing. I hate ads that crap on the competition. This one’s big, brutish, unsportsmanlike and probably has gun-toting fans with the Stars and Stripes painted on their faces. I hate it.

5. CANADA: Project ‘P’

Bronze. You just can’t write a better headline than "Take your penis to the gym." However, I did find the art direction a bit lacking and the copy all over the place. Top marks for originality, but undisciplined. I expect if the penis buckles down and spends more time at the gym, we’ll see him going for gold at the next Olympics.

Also in this report:

- Flying blind: Without knowing the answers to some pretty fundamental questions about newspaper readership, media buyers are forced to make their decisions based on assumptions, not facts. And that’s not good enough, says one expert. p.B16

- NADbank building on solid base: Newspaper readership study evolving in dynamic market p.B18

- The war: views from the sidelines: The battle of the national dailies is causing other papers to redesign, rethink their news delivery p.B20

In Brief: The Garden picks CDs to take on daily creative leadership

Plus, Naked names two new leaders of its own and Digital Ethos comes to Canada.

The Garden promotes two creative directors

ACDs Lindsay Eady and Francheska Galloway-Davis have taken over responsibility for day-to-day creative leadership at The Garden after being promoted to creative director roles.

The pair will also help develop the agency’s creative talent, formalizing mentorship and leadership activities they have been doing since joining the agency four and three years ago, respectively. In addition to creating the agency’s internship program, the pair have worked on campaigns for Coinsquare, FitTrack and “The Coke Challenge” campaign for DanceSafe.

Eady and Galloway-Davis will continue to report to The Garden’s co-founder and chief creative officer Shane Ogilvie, who is stepping back from daily creative duties to a more high-level strategic role, allowing him to focus on client relationships and business growth.

Naked Creative Consultancy names new creative and strategy leadership

Toronto’s Naked Creative Consultancy has hired Yasmin Sahni as its new creative director. She is taking over creative leadership from David Kenyon, who has been in the role for 10 years and is moving into a new role as director of strategy, leading the discipline at the agency.

Sahni is coming off of three years as VP and ECD at GTB’s Toronto office, where she managed all the retail, social and service creative for Ford Canada. She previously managed both Vice Media and Vice’s in-house ad agency Virtue.

Peter Shier, president of Naked, says Sahni’s hiring adds to its creative bench and capabilities, as well as a track record of mentorship, a priority for the company. Meanwhile, Kenyon’s move to the strategy side, he says, makes sense because of his deep knowledge of its clients, which have included Ancestry and The Globe and Mail.

Digital Ethos opens a Toronto office

U.K. digital agency Digital Ethos is pursuing new growth opportunities in North America by opening a new office in Toronto.

Though it didn’t disclose them, the agency has begun serving a number of North American clients, and CEO/founder Luke Tobin says the “time was right to invest in a more formal and actual presence in the area.” whose services include design, SEO, pay-per-click, social media, influencer and PR,

This year, the agency’s growth has also allowed it to open an office in Hamburg, Germany, though it also has remote staff working in countries around the world.

Moray Hickes was the company’s first North American hire as VP of sales, tasked with business development in the region.