Agency Brief: Duncan Channon urges people to quit smoking by empathizing with the struggle
In its latest campaign for the California Tobacco Control Program, Duncan Channon created a series of animated PSAs that show how difficult it can be to quit smoking, and why that’s OK.
Directed by Robertino Zambrano, formerly of R/GA New York, the films take an empathetic approach to encouraging people to quit tobacco, “normalizing the reality that failing is part of the journey,” says Duncan Channon. The PSAs feature the stories of people who have tried, fallen and eventually, finally, quit smoking. The agency, which created the series in partnership with Nexus Studios, says the message is even more relevant today as research shows that smoking doubles the risk of getting seriously ill from COVID. In the above PSA, “Steve” lightheartedly discusses the “rules” he created and broke while trying to quit smoking. "Ryan" says they only mustered the strength to quit vaping after finding out their little sister had taken up the habit. In “George,” an older smoker opens up about regaining his confidence to quit tobacco after several failed attempts over the years.
Agency helps Google create more equitable lighting options
Creative Theory Agency—a Black-owned, culture-focused marketing shop—recently consulted Google on a project to create a custom light-measuring tool to improve the way light interacts with Black and Brown skin. The agency—which helps brands solve internal and external representation needs, working with clients like Capital One—says, “historically, lighting, in general, has been based on white/lighter skin. All of the tech advancements and new tools developed since the invention of cameras have largely centered whiteness and still do."
With Google, CTA aimed to address this unconscious bias, which it says “has led to compounding neglect of how to properly showcase Black and Brown skin on film (still and motion). Now, with most of the world forced to work from home, the need for new lighting and camera technology is even more needed. Black and Brown people are on video calls for work and it can be frustrating that most standard cameras have not tried or done thorough work to improve their hardware and software,” the agency says. With the new technology that the agency says it helped the tech giant develop, people can now choose from different filters that interact best with their skin tones when joining a Google Video Conference “to provide all Googlers with the same experience in an equitable and accessible way.”
Despite the ongoing pandemic, agencies continue to expand their footprints. Whether their employees can travel between new global offices given the various travel restrictions currently in place in many countries is a different story.
Toronto-based Juliet has launched its first office in Los Angeles, though it is doubtful that it will physically open to all employees anytime soon due to the city's recent spike in COVID cases. The office will be run by President Brian Dunbar, the former president of David&Goliath who joined Juliet after a year-long consultancy gig. The office houses new U.S. clients such as Mailchimp, Jagermeister and the Good Goods division of Westbrook, a multi-media venture founded by Will and Jada Smith.
Plus, Stockholm-based Ingo—the 10-year-old agency part of the Ogilvy network that helped create Burger King’s “Moldy Whopper”—is expanding internationally for the first time, opening an office in Hamburg, Germany. Amsterdam- and Los Angeles-based creative shop 180 opened two new hubs: 180 New York and 180 Mena (Middle East North Africa), which will be based in Dubai and Doha. And Dallas-based Omnicom consulting firm Credera expanded its footprint to L.A., following its 2019 expansion to New York and Chicago.
Accounts on the move
COVID hasn’t stopped business from continuing to shift hands, either. Most recently, McKinney picked up agency-of-record duties for grocery chain Stop & Shop. The Cheil Worldwide shop will serve as the company’s lead advertising agency, handling creative, strategy and production. McKinney takes the Stop & Shop business from C Space, which is part of Omnicom’s Interbrand network.
Wagstaff Media and Marketing was also chosen by The Italian National Tourism Board as its U.S. agency of record, tasked with growing American visitation to Italy when travel resumes. Camp + King picked up the agency-of-record title for Grove Collaborative, a direct-to-consumer brand and retailer of natural home products in the U.S. Opinionated picked up the creative and strategy account of Iovate Health Sciences International’s Six Star Pro Nutrition sports brand. Mering was named the agency of record across media and creative for Visit Slo Cal, the non-profit marketing and management organization for San Luis Obispo County, California. VCCP was added to Reckitt Benckiser’s global brand experience roster following a pitch, giving it responsibilities across content, social and digital advertising.
Plus, in an unusual move, Toronto-based independent shop Zulu Alpha Kilo took an equity stake in Consonant Skincare, which it has done project work for since 2017, effectively making it the company’s in-house agency and shareholder.
Ogilvy appoints new chief diversity, equity and inclusion officer
WPP’s Ogilvy hired James Nicholas Kinney as both its global and North American chief diversity, equity and inclusion officer. In North America, Ogilvy says Kinney will oversee “all aspects of talent management, recruitment, learning and development and wellbeing,” working with Global Chief People Officer Jag Dhanji. Globally, he will partner with Ogilvy’s worldwide leaders to develop and evolve current practices, policies and programs. Kinney, who was Mother’s chief talent officer previously, succeeds Donna Pedro, who had held that role since 2007 and recently moved into a role within WPP.
Kinney, with 18 years of experience in the business, has also spent time at Giant Spoon and founded Six Figure Jobs, an audio education company dedicated to improving diversity in hiring practices and work, as well as Equify, an online diversity certification program. Ogilvy Global CEO Andy Main credits Kinney as having “a passion for people that is contagious and a unique approach to diversity, equity, inclusion, and culture.”
“My life's work is centered around propelling people towards their purpose and unlocking doors so they can achieve their full potential,” Kinney adds. “It’s an honor to have a global platform to do just that at Ogilvy.”
Other brief hiring updates
Hill Holliday named Icaro Doria its new chief creative officer. He replaces Lance Jensen who left earlier this month after 10 years in the role. Doria joins the Boston-based IPG creative shop from Havas Health & You, where he was global chief creative officer. Prior to that, Doria served as U.S. chief creative officer for Arnold Worldwide and was a founding partner and chief creative at Wieden+Kennedy São Paulo before that.
FCB Chicago hired Nicole Brandell as its chief strategy officer. In her 20 years in the industry, Brandell has held stints at W+K, Leo Burnett and most recently consulting shop Material+, where she spent the last two years. At FCB Chicago, she will partner with President Kelly Graves and Chief Creative Officer Andrés Ordóñez on driving the agency’s strategy internally and for its clients.
Ogilvy Social.Lab Amsterdam appointed Jai Kotecha CEO. In the new role, he will lead a team of 150 strategists, media specialists and creatives, while working closely with WPP partners at the Amsteldok campus in Amsterdam. Kotecha was most recently managing partner of Ogilvy London and will remain on the agency’s U.K. board. He first joined Ogilvy in 2012, as an associate director in the London office and was promoted to managing partner in 2018.
Adam&EveDDB poached Bukola Garry from Havas as its first head of diversity, equality and inclusion. She has been serving since 2018 as Havas’ diversity and inclusion manager. Adam&EveDDB says Garry will work to embed “its pro-actively anti-racist and positively inclusive philosophy at the heart of its business.” She will also work across other DDB Group agencies including cain&abel, Gutenberg and DDB Remedy.
Digitas hired Tim Mattimore as executive creative director in its Chicago office, where he will oversee the Publicis agency’s portfolio which includes clients like Whirlpool, Mizkan and Aldi. Mattimore will report to U.S. Chief Creative Officer Atit Shah and joins from BBDO Minneapolis, where he drove campaigns for brands including Hormel Foods, Berkshire Hathaway Home Services and Theirworld, among others.