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Silent auction speaks volumes for N.Y. Advertising Club

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QUALITY TIME WITH TOP AD EXECS doesn't come cheap—especially when it's for a good cause. The Advertising Club of New York's Holiday Party and Silent Auction late last month, which offered bidders the opportunity to hang with some advertising and marketing muckety-mucks, raised $12,000 to benefit various activities sponsored by the ad club, such as a national internship program, and grants and scholarships for advertising, marketing and communication programs as well as for "creatively focused" schools that specialize in advertising. The event's top bid was $2,700, by Anthony Del Monte of Squeaky Wheel Media, for a go-carting outing on Long Island with Alex Bogusky, of Crispin Porter+Bogusky. There was a tie for the second-highest bid: $1,000 to visit with ad-honcho-turned-talking-head Donny Deutsch on the set of his "The Big Idea" cable show, and $1,000 to chill out at Bliss Spa in New York with Saatchi N.Y. CEO Mary Baglivo. Among other big bids, a "power lunch" at media cafeteria Michael's with Wenda Harris Millard, chief sales officer at Yahoo!, commanded $800. Gina Grillo, executive director of the ad club, said she's hoping to make the silent auction an annual event. "It's a great opportunity to foster relationships, make connections and raise money for the next generation of ad execs," she said. —Matthew Schwartz

CORPORATE HOLIDAY GIFTS tend to be a little too, well, corporate. But well-behaved clients on the gift lists of organizations such as marketing consultant Peppers & Rogers Group, Westin Hotels, law firm Latham & Watkins and Harvard Business School will get a few laughs this holiday season when they receive executive gifts featuring industry-specific New Yorker cartoons. As part of a new corporate gift program from The New Yorker's Cartoon Bank, gift-givers choose cartoons that are relevant to their industry and have them printed on the product of their choice. Options include a page-a-day calendar; a wall calendar with optional quotes from their CEO; a logo-imprinted, framed New Yorker cartoon or cover; and a boxed set of 20 cartoon and cover note cards. Companies can even commission an original cartoon by a New Yorker artist for upwards of $5,000. The executive gift program builds on the Cartoon Bank's custom book program, which allows clients to choose about 80 cartoons to be compiled in a custom book. Clients of that program include CourtTV, NPR, Yahoo! and CNN, which worked with Cartoon Bank to create a gift book to commemorate its 25th anniversary. Yahoo! has created two books as gifts for those who attend its advertising conferences. —Mary E. Morrison

BILLIJAM, A NEW YORK-BASED DIGITAL ART COMPANY, has created a new outdoor ad format called Art Spots, which provide an engaging way for businesses to advertise their brands on billboards, wallscapes, transit media and in hotels, restaurants and bars. Art Spots are custom digital art creations featuring images such as blue skies, kaleidoscope patterns and swirling psychedelic images, designed by Billijam's digital artists. Businesses can sponsor the spots, which include the company's logo and custom designs, for a new way to generate buzz, according to Billijam. Demos of Art Spots are now being displayed on more than 80 digital screens at the entrances to New York subway stations on Clear Channel's Outdoor Network. —Kate Maddox

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