Hello. For the past 12 months, while we've been diligently putting out our fortnightly (yes, that's a word) magazine and posting news at all hours, we've been also been hard at work in secret, building something new.
Ad Age has been around since 1930. It has a storied and influential heritage. An early tagline, reclaimed in this reboot, was "Important to important people." Since you, dear reader, are important, please know we did not take lightly the decision to rebrand. But the fact is, while our reporters, editors, designers, publisher and sales people have remained at the cutting edge of marketing, branding and messaging trends, the visual expression of the Ad Age brand had become a bit … fusty.
Let's play some buzzword bingo! It was time to pivot. This space was in need of disruption.
Speaking of disruption, our industry is in the throes of a massive one. And it's nearly impossible to see disruption as it's happening. That's why we're here. To define the disruption, and guide you through it.
For the new look, we sent out an RFP to 10 design agencies. The brief was to bring us into 2017 in a way that accurately reflects the goals and ambitions of Ad Age as a media brand—not just a trade rag. Not that there's anything wrong with trade rags. We ended up going with the Original Champions of Design—or OCD, which is a perfect name—for its impeccable taste, love of print and strategic understanding of what it is to build a multiplatform system. Ach, buzzwords again, sorry. Translation: They're making us look good—wherever you find us.
And that's the point. Ad Age is not just a magazine. It's not just a website. We're an idea—whether it's on a podcast, a video, an Alexa skill, an Instagram Story or whatever the next vital platform is. Except maybe Snapchat. Should we join Snapchat? Ugh, Snapchat.
About that idea. We're remaining true to our core DNA. Ad Age has better access to and understanding of the advertising landscape than anyone. Period. But it's time to widen the aperture. Everything is a brand. Everything is an ad for itself. So our coverage needs to reflect the broader culture beyond the weeds of our industry. We'll still get into those weeds, but we'll also explore the flowers. And we'll do it with a tone that's inviting, accessible, wry, witty and sharp.
Finally, yes, we're officially "Ad Age" now. A minor adjustment, maybe, but it reflects a shift that goes deeper. When was the last time you called us "Advertising Age," anyway?
The theme of this rebrand issue, is, fittingly enough, reinvention. And this shines through each of our three different cover stories (collect them all!). Ann-Christine Diaz profiles Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, the pro-wrestler turned megastar who is no stranger to reinvention and brand building. Meanwhile, E.J. Schultz reveals the NRA's tactics for marketing guns to women in a post-Obama world.
We sent Garett Sloane to Menlo Park to profile Sheryl Sandberg and her team as Facebook attempts to redefine the social network as TV's next frontier. And speaking of TV, Jeanine Poggi interviews Megyn Kelly, who is repositioning herself as a morning-show host. New recurring features include an entire Creativity section, city spotlights, a regular Q&AA (see what we did there?), throwbacks to vintage ads and data. Lots of data.
This isn't merely a new look. This isn't window dressing. This is a new Ad Age for a new advertising age. Things are moving faster every day. Which means they'll never be this slow again.