Agency Brief: Sunshine on Pride, a poopie podcast and heartfelt creatives
After a week of severe thunderstorms that caused even the Northeast to be on alert for tornados (they touched down on parts of New Jersey and Pennsylvania), the sun is out on Friday and it finally feels like summer in New York. Those that got drenched going to the annual Effie Awards gala last night in Manhattan (congrats to Procter & Gamble and Saatchi & Saatchi for taking home the Grand Effie for “It’s a Tide Ad”) can warm their chilled bones.
Sun shines for Pride
So with the sun shining, we say goodbye to May and hello to June, well known as LGBTQ+ Pride month. The Los Angeles LGBT Center is celebrating its 50th anniversary and enlisted Santa Monica, California-based independent agency RPA, along with consultancy Raconteur, to create its new logo. It's designed out of 292 past protest signs arranged to say “Forward for 50." The agency also created posters, font and stencils for people to use and a video narrated by actor Patricia Arquette. Images included in the logo show activists like Chuck Stallard, a photographer who covered the war against HIV/AIDS, and Pat Rocco, a filmmaker and photographer who documented the LGBTQ rights movement in L.A. and Hawaii.
“The Forward for 50 logo created by RPA perfectly encapsulates where we’ve come from, who we are and where we’re going as an organization and a community,” Kelly Freter, Los Angeles LGBT Center director of marketing and communications, said in a statement.
The coconut is ripening
Martin Sorrell, executive chairman of S4 Capital (described by him as the “peanut morphed into a coconut”), said at his annual general meeting on Wednesday that in nine months, the company has grown to 1,300 people in 18 countries with a market cap of 600 million euro ($750 million). Sorrell said S4 has expanded in Asia Pacific with programmatic consultancy MightyHive buying ProgMedia in Brazil, adding to its capabilities in that region as well as Mexico and Argentina. MediaMonks, the production company S4 bought for $350 million, also added Amsterdam robotic video studio Caramel Pictures, which specializes in food and drink content, according to Sorrell.
“Our two biggest clients may double in size this year but we still search for bigger and deeper relationships or ‘whoppers,’” Sorrell told shareholders, noting client wins including Procter & Gamble’s Braun, Google, Nestlé’s Starbucks at Home, Netflix, Mondelez, Uber, Bayer, Sprint, Avon, ServiceNow, Shiseido and Olympic Broadcasting Services. “The focus remains on broadening and deepening existing client relationships and our geographical offer.”
Getting at the heart of the creative
The 4A’s, in partnership with Innocean Worldwide-owned David & Goliath, are forming what they’re calling the Conscious Creative Movement, comprised of “heart-driven” creators that will work on purpose-driven initiatives such as increasing diversity in the industry, reducing carbon footprints and helping families in need. Creators enlisted so far include Butler, Shine, Stern & Partners Chief Creative Officer Matt Curry; Mekanism CEO Jason Harris; 3% Conference Founder Kat Gordon; Shine on Sierra Leone Founder Tiffany Persons; Oberland Co-Founder and Executive Creative Director Bill Oberlander; and Odysseus Arms Founder and CEO Libby Brockhoff, among others.
“There has never been a better time than now for creativity to bring change to the world,” 4A’s President and CEO Marla Kaplowitz said in a statement.
This is very important
Havas New York has come out with the “Very Important Poopers,” “Very Important Pilot” and “Very Important Pianist” campaigns for Reckitt Benckiser brand Air Wick’s pre-poop toilet spray that is used to trap odors in the bowl. Now the agency is developing and producing “The Very Important Podcast: The Podcast That Doesn’t Stink” that will be recorded in real public bathrooms with host Dru Johnson going over how “not to stink at very important things like dating, self-defense, even balloon animals.” If any of that sounds at all interesting, you can find the podcast on iTunes, Spotify and YouTube.
More from Havas
Havas Health & You, the network’s health and wellness division, named Megan Rokosh as its first global chief marketing officer. She previously was director of communications. She will report directly to Havas Health & You Global CEO Donna Murphy who said in a statement, “As we grow quickly and our scope of work broadens from health and wellness communications into technology, data and platforms, bringing a CMO into our network became a clear necessity.”
While we’re on promotions
Just today McCann New York named Erica Yahr chief strategy officer. Yahr joined McCann in 1996 and most recently served as executive vice president and executive strategy director for McCann Health in New York. Meanwhile, McCann New York also hired Emily Portnoy as executive VP, head of brand strategy, and Jaime Winner, senior VP and head of social and digital strategy.
McCann Worldgroup elevated Alex Lubar to president of its Asia Pacific division. He was CEO of McCann London and before that, McCann Worldgroup global CMO. Sheryl Marjoram, managing director of McCann London, succeeds Lubar as that agency’s CEO.
Digitas promoted Melissa Levy to managing director of Boston, expanding her current role of head of account management, North America. In the new position, Levy will drive growth for the agency’s more than 500-person team in Boston. As head of account management, Levy already oversees a team of more than 200 people across six U.S. Digitas offices.
Carat U.S. CEO Michael Epstein has been promoted to global CEO. He will continue to be based in New York but spend time in London to work with the global leadership team. Epstein reports to Peter Huijboom, global CEO of media and performance and global clients.
Meanwhile, FCB New York hired Emma Armstrong as president. She joins from iCrossing New York and will work alongside FCB New York Chief Creative Officer Ari Halper and Chief Strategy Officer Todd Sussman. Prior to iCrossing, Armstrong was executive VP and global account director for Grey Group.
Finally, some wins
Brooklyn-based indie agency Madwell won the U.S. agency-of-record title for Harmless Harvest, the maker of coconut beverages, following a review. The agency’s first task will be to develop a brand positioning, campaign strategy, media planning and creative execution in support of a summer launch. Madwell will handle all strategy, creative development and execution and media-planning and -buying for the brand going forward.
Independent creative agency BSSP was named AOR for wellness brand Traditional Medicinals. The shop will handle strategy, creative, communications planning, media buying (for the U.S. and Canada) and analytics. BSSP won the account from incumbent agency Haberman. The first work from BSSP will launch in the fall.
Stagwell Group-owned performance agency ForwardPMX won lead paid, search and social duties for FitFlop, a maker of biomechanically engineered shoes, sneakers and sandals.