FCB shows how it rolls with toilet paper public service ad, and Williams-Sonoma pays for 'Made in USA' blunder: Tuesday Wake-up Call
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Ad agencies are getting the hang of working remotely. FCB, an Interpublic Group of Cos. agency, created a campaign for Cottonelle, one of the most visible accounts in the country right now. For the “Share A Square” campaign, FCB came up with a marketing plan to promote neighborly toilet paper etiquette at a time when America is hoarding two-ply, one-ply—any ply.
The agency managed to create a catchy public service message to counter the urge to hoard, even while its teams were sheltering in place at their homes across North America, abiding by the coronavirus quarantine. “We assure you there will be enough to go around,” Cottonelle’s soothing new ad says.
FCB kept the execution simple, with a digital video that flashes words of calm across the screen as it slowly morphs into a symbol that represents TP.
Kimberly-Clark’s Cottonelle is working with United Way to donate $1 million and a million rolls of toilet paper. FCB’s contribution to the campaign shows how advertising agencies are able to still get their work done even as staff are kept out of the office. It’s an exercise in creative problem-solving and toilet paper selflessness.
“People are working many hours in a day to get these things done,” says Kerry Hill, who has run FCB Chicago’s production for the past 10 years and was recently promoted to North America director of integrated production. Hill spoke with Ad Age’s Lindsay Rittenhouse about how distance advertising works. “Everyone is remote. We’re all active users and experts on Zoom. The creatives have been really great about sharing screens with editors and designers. Clients have been very, very good with feedback, in terms of responsiveness. People are just so tethered to their computers right now.”
Williams-Sonoma has settled for $1 million with the Federal Trade Commission over false “Made in USA” claims. The retailer, which owns Pottery Barn and West Elm, billed a Pottery Barn mattress as “crafted in America from local and imported materials” that was actually made in China. The retailer corrected the error, but a new complaint arose from watchdog group Truth in Advertising around Williams-Sonoma’s Goldtouch Bakeware, Rejuvenation-branded products and some of its Pottery Barn upholstered furniture. Williams-Sonoma says it won't make unsubstantiated claims again.
Marketers have put the brakes on ad campaigns as coronavirus wreaks havoc across the U.S. In fact, almost half of advertisers had to halt a campaign already in progress once the virus appeared, according to a new poll from Advertiser Perceptions. Not only have advertisers hit “stop” on ads in midstream, a third of advertisers surveyed said they scrapped ad campaigns that had been in the pipeline before the outbreak. Ad Age staff reports on the advertising update and more related to coronavirus marketing in its daily blog dedicated to brands’ shifting strategies during the crisis.
Chinese-based social video app TikTok has been validated by independent measurement company Kochava, which released a traffic analysis that looks at dozens of the top mobile ad platforms, and gave TikTok high marks. Advertisers are interested in any independent analysis that helps verify the app’s surging audience numbers. Kochava is one of the only companies with direct access to data on the app with 800-million plus users, and says all that traffic looks real, as far as it can tell. “We found that everything that we’ve been hearing about TikTok, all the rumors [about growth], it was true,” Kevin King, lead client analytics at Kochava, tells Ad Age’s Garett Sloane.
Social network Facebook has pledged $100 million to help publishers reeling from the coronavirus recession. Facebook has been trying to court publishers for months now, even before they were hammered by the new financial crisis. Last year, Facebook started paying top-tier publishers directly to participate in its news hub, which was created to host mostly credible, vetted headlines. Now, with major publishers starting to make severe cuts to staff and operations amid the coronavirus outbreak, Facebook has promised a lifeline. The money will come in the form of $25 million in grants to local news outlets, and “$75 million in a marketing drive aimed at news organizations internationally,” according to The New York Times.
Tokyo drift: The Olympics have a new date booked for the Tokyo Summer Games. The event is now set for July 23 to Aug. 8, 2021.
New series: “Living on the Edge” is a new Ad Age feature that explores the world of small agencies and how they are handling the biggest challenges of their time. This first installment comes from BowerComm in Hutchinson, Kansas, discussing how the agency helped solved a distance learning problem with WiFi parking lots.
Airbnb money back: The home-sharing company has extended its refund policy to include bookings through May 31 to account for the longer disruptions to travel caused by coronavirus. The company also promised $250 million to lodgers who are missing out on bookings.
That does it for today’s Wake-Up Call, thanks for reading and we hope you are all keeping safe and well.
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