EDITOR'S NOTE

By Published on .

"Think global, take the local." That's our version of this oft-used cliche. When we started pondering how best to illustrate this month's look at advertising from a decidedly international perspective, design director Andy Jacobson hopped on the downtown No. 6 train and emerged in Soho, where he picked up some toy helicopters fashioned out of Pepsi and Nestle containers. In some countries people take what we consider ordinary household objects and turn them into something else entirely. More than just folk art, these objects reveal a different take on advertising and consumerism, a less jaded, more open acceptance of the role these products play in day-to-day life. That the helicopters had a kind of militaristic look to them seemed to play into our report on the changing role of the global creative director, from which one can easily see the image of a battle-scarred leader flying into a combat zone to inspect the troops, pin a few medals on some chests, pose for a snapshot or two and then take off.

Of course, this perception of the global CD is simplistic; nevertheless, you have to wonder just how involved these people can be with what's going on in the trenches of advertising. For years, we used to hear creative people talk about them as though they were irrelevant. "There are too many nice old gentlemen running around with this title who have brought disrepute to the job because the kids won't listen to them," said O&M's Neil French back in our October 1994 profile of him. Have things changed much since then? Certainly the agency world has continued its inexorable trend towards more globalization, following the multinational march of big name brands. Global CD posts are still around, filled now with newer, fresher faces, but not every big agency network has them. The real question we might want to ask is, are the kids listening?

As part of our international coverage this month we've tracked down four hot teams from Holland, Finland, Australia (OK, so they're really Brits) and Brazil. All are award-winners, all have sparkling portfolios, and all will probably end up one day working in New York or San Francisco. Yes, it is a small world after all, isn't it?

Now that November is here, and it's time to put down that six-pack and grab a bottle of Merlot, we've profiled the gang of comedians in Chicago who've put their spin on that most American of products, Budweiser. Dennis Ryan's group is not only entrusted with one of the most pressurized tasks in advertising, trying to change the image of a major brand, but in their spare time they also crank out those funny Rold Gold spots. So you think working on beer and pretzels sounds like a day hanging out with Norm Peterson? When you consider that some of their best Bud work was shot but never aired, you'll see that it isn't.

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