Campaign Highlights Tension and Drama of Daily Wartime News Meetings

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A scene from the TV commercial.

NEW YORK ( -- The Washington Post is preparing to break a new TV commercial that will feature the tension and drama of its legendary newsroom during its coverage of the war in Iraq.

Executive editor Len Downie appears in the spot along with various shots of the editors at work during the paper's 2 p.m. news meetings. The new campaign debuts April 24.

Reporter's desk
"We follow the story of how the newspaper gets from the reporter's desk to the reader's

Photo: Washington Post
Executive editor Len Downie is spotlighted in TV commercial.
front door step. There are three spots in the campaign. The first is a day in the life of a newsroom; the second is the printing of the paper; and the third is about the delivery," said Woody Kay, chief creative officer of Havas' Arnold Worldwide, Washington.

Illustrating "everyday content" is the aim behind the new spots, airing in the Washington, D.C., metro area, Mr. Kay said. The ads contain narration about next-day news and upcoming features. "It's the first time, to my knowledge, that a newspaper has tried that," he said.

Jeri Flood, director of marketing at The Post, said the newspaper is also switching its tagline. "If it's important to you, it's important to us" replaces "If you don't get it: you don't get it." Ms. Flood explained that the newspaper phased out the old tagline "because research showed it was exclusionary." The Post's last TV spots ran in early 2002, Ms. Flood said.

New lifestyle section
The TV commercials form part of a launch campaign for a new supplement the paper is unveiling April 27. The lifestyle-oriented section is called "Sunday Source."

"It is a leisure- and lifestyle-oriented publication for busy young adults with lots of interests," Ms. Flood said.

Arnold Worldwide is currently working on a print campaign for the launch and tweaking existing radio spots.

The Post isn't the only newspaper refreshing its advertising. The Financial Times is also reviewing work from agencies for a new campaign. The Pearson-owned newspaper has talked to M&C Saatchi and DiMassimo Brand Advertising, both independently owned shops based in New York. The San Francisco Chronicle also awarded Interpublic Group of Cos.' Foote, Cone & Belding Worldwide its account in December 2002.

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