After Volkswagen decided to review its global creative duties recently, Ford Motor Company is also treading a similar path and has initiated a creative review process in an aim to boost its marketing and advertising operations.
After Volkswagen decided to review its global creative duties recently, Ford Motor Company is also treading a similar path and has initiated a creative review process in an aim to boost its marketing and advertising operations. Ford will be putting up the account for review after having worked with WPP for almost 75 years. The news comes in after WPP’s founder and chief executive Martin Sorrell moved out of the agency amidst allegations of personal misconduct. The agency has been handling $4 billion in advertising business for Ford globally in more than 40 countries.
Currently, a dedicated agency — GTB (Global Team Blue) — handles the Ford business. After the motor company got a new CEO — Jim Hackett — last year, rumours about Ford wanting to change agency hands had been doing rounds.
Last year, GTB had reduced its staff by 100 from its offices in Michigan, London and Shanghai, including long-time chief creative officer Toby Barlow. This move was attributed to Ford sales lagging in the US. Meanwhile, WPP’s shares also suffered after investors learnt that one of the agency’s biggest clients is reviewing its creative mandate.
Ford’s relationship with J. Walter Thompson Advertising began in New York in 1943. The first ad from the association came out in 1945 titled There’s a Ford in your Future referring to the fact that Ford had been busy producing war material, and that it would soon get back to producing cars and trucks.
When David Bowie took over the subway
Two years after the artist’s death, Spotify has found an apt way to pay tribute to David Bowie through David Bowie Subway Takeover that explores his influence on the music, fashion and culture of New York City. Though he hailed from London, Bowie spent a majority of his life in NY. The music app has transformed NY’s Broadway-Lafayette subway station into an underground takeover that pays tribute to the legendary works and life of the musician. The exhibition that started on April 17 will go on till May 13.
“Inside the station, visitors will encounter numerous wall-sized images of Bowie-inspired art, from fan-made to pieces currently on display at the museum exhibition. Each piece of art will be paired with something Bowie has said that speaks to his affection for the city and its impact on his work, giving further insight into the artist’s mindset and methods. Each piece will also contain a unique Spotify code that brings fans closer to Bowie music and will accompany the underground experience,” informs Spotify on its website. Keepsake MetroCards, displaying one of five Bowie personas including Ziggy Stardust, Aladdin Sane and Thin White Duke are also up for grabs.
Taking the magic online, Spotify’s multimedia format Spotlight will further extend the magic of Bowie with the introduction of a new series, David Bowie Stories which will be a curated compilation of anecdotes, tall tales, origin stories, mini essays and more, paired with photos, video and items from the David Bowie Archive.
P&G returns to YouTube, but with riders
It was about a year ago that Procter & Gamble had decided to boycott advertising on YouTube after the online video platform served its ads right next to objectionable content. Now, the consumer goods giant has returned to the platform but has decided to be more selective and judicious than before. Tressie Rose, P&G’s spokeswoman said in a statement, “We paused advertising, and for the past year, we have worked extensively with YouTube to improve brand safety. We now feel the right measures are in place for P&G brands to have the option to advertise on YouTube.”
Now, P&G plans to only advertise on videos that it has reviewed and approved. These clips will come from fewer than 10,000 YouTube channels. Earlier, it used to market through about three million YouTube channels. Even as the news of 300 advertisers unknowingly running ads on YouTube against objectionable content came to light very recently, P&G has decided to go ahead with its decision of returning to the platform.
P&G had cut its digital advertising spends by over $200 million last year. However, with the recent announcement, the company is tight-lipped about its digital spend plans for this year or the amount it is planning to spend on the video service.
Maltesers is ‘Celebrating Similarities’
Maltesers’ disability-focussed campaign in 2016 created much noise for all the right reasons. Now, the Mars Wrigley owned brand has released two ads that Look on the Light Side to tackle taboo topics by featuring stories of two women of varying ages and sexualities. While Powerpoint sees a menopausal woman discussing an embarrassing moment brought on by a hot flush, Accountant features a lesbian who is seen discussing the challenges of dating. The ads have been created by London agency AMV BBDO in consultation with advocacy groups Age UK and Stonewall, which provided feedback and focus groups. The campaign, which began as part of a Channel 4 free-airtime partnership called Superhumans Wanted is now called Celebrating Similarities.
Michele Oliver, marketing VP, Mars Chocolate UK, said, “The adverts recreate real-life situations faced by women from different groups in society who you don’t often see or hear from. We are telling their stories to help combat perceived stereotypes and celebrate our similarities, whilst at the same time hopefully making people smile.”
The ads will air on TV and digital media. Meanwhile, the chocolate brand has also partnered with Channel 4 to run spots during First Dates, in which diverse couples talk about their first date stories in a light-hearted way.
Martin Lewis sues Facebook
Facebook is not going to have it easy over the next couple of months at least because of the growing criticism over its advertising policy. Even as the Cambridge Analytica saga is yet to die down, another problem has already brewed for the social networking platform. Martin Lewis, founder of the consumer help site MoneySavingExpert. com, is suing the company for defamation over fake ads that have been using his image and name to lure people.
His blog informs: “Within the last year, the social media site has published over 50 fake Martin Lewis adverts (sample images below), which are regularly seen, likely by millions of people, in the UK. These adverts are often scams. Many have big pictures of Martin and his name, alongside a raft of false promises or endorsements — some then link on to fake articles which continue the theme”.
Lewis goes on to say that even when these incidents were reported, many were left up for days or weeks; and finally, when they were taken down, scammers launched a new, nearly identical campaign soon afterwards.
“I am not the only public face this has happened to. It is time Facebook was made to take responsibility. It claims to be a platform not a publisher — yet this isn’t just a post on a web forum, it is being paid to publish, promulgate and promote what are often fraudulent enterprises. My hope is this lawsuit will force it to change its system. Nothing else has worked. People need protection,” he wrote. Mark Lewis of Seddons, the lawyer leading the team, said, “Facebook is not above the law — it cannot hide outside the UK and think that it is untouchable. Exemplary damages are being sought. This means we will ask the court to ensure they are substantial enough that Facebook can’t simply see paying out damages as just the ‘cost of business’ and carry on regardless. It needs to be shown that the price of causing misery is very high.”
Meanwhile, Martin Lewis has also tweeted about how The Guardian and Sky News have also served fake ads against the articles about this lawsuit.
— Compiled by Ananya Saha