TikTok is Ad Age Marketer of the Year, and Amazon is now world’s largest advertiser: Monday Wake-Up Call
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Ad Age reveals 2020’s Marketers of the Year this morning and top of the list is TikTok, the social media platform that has emerged as a major pop-culture force in 2020, despite being on the verge of a ban in the U.S.
While White House talks continue over TikTok’s future, Ad Age’s Garett Sloane writes that “TikTok’s marketing is cruising along as coolly as Nathan Apodaca (aka Dogg Face) lip-syncing 'Dreams' and sipping Ocean Spray.” On top of that, marketers including Mtn Dew, Hyundai, Procter & Gamble and Chipotle made it a key component in their marketing, as did beauty brand e.l.f., another of our Marketers of the Year.
Other brands on our list include meditation app Calm, whose Election Day marketing set a new standard for timely product placement; Etsy, which smartly tapped into trends like DIY and indeed face masks; and McDonald’s, whose Travis Scott collaboration proved wildly popular. There’s also Lego, which kept families entertained during the pandemic, and the anti-trump Conservative PAC The Lincoln Project. Take a look at the complete list here.
This week’s issue of Ad Age also reveals the world’s top 100 advertisers, compiled by Ad Age Datacenter. This year, the list is topped by a new leader: Amazon, whose advertising and promotion spending soared 34% to $11 billion in 2019 as net sales surged 20% to $281 billion.
Amazon leapfrogged Procter & Gamble, which has previously topped the list every single year since 1987, bar 2017 when it was outspent by Samsung. Altogether, ad spending for the world’s 100 biggest advertisers edged up 0.9% to a record $300 billion in 2019—before marketers slammed the brakes on spending in early 2020 amid the global pandemic. See the numbers here.
Time’s Dec. 14 cover says it all about 2020. It simply crosses out the digits of the year with a big red “X” with the words “The Worst Year Ever” below.
As the magazine explains, it has only used the big red X four times previously in its history; to mark the death of Adolf Hitler in 1945, to cross out an image of Saddam Hussein during the Gulf War in 2003, and to mark the killings of Osama bin Laden and Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. 2020, it seems, is in great company.
As marketers gear up for what’s likely to be a very different Super Bowl, Toyota has become the first automaker to confirm its commitment to the Big Game.
Ad Age’s Jeanine Poggi reports that Toyota will once again work with creative agency of record Saatchi & Saatchi on the campaign, although it hasn’t revealed what form the creative will take. The auto category is expected to be lighter in Super Bowl LV as the industry grapples with the fallout of the pandemic; however, General Motors is also expected to advertise, including one ad featuring its new Hummer electric vehicle.
Revved up: Fiat Chrysler has retained Huge as its digital agency of record following a review, writes Ad Age’s Lindsay Rittenhouse in this week’s Agency Brief. Also, Highdive, Ad Age's Small Agency of the Year, has won some new clients, including Fruit-tella.
Monolith news: A group of California artists has owned up to placing a monolith on California’s Pine Mountain, reports the New York Times. (No word yet on who’s behind the Utah monolith, though, or the one that appeared in Romania.)
The Week Ahead: Tomorrow, Ad Age Next: CMO, a virtual half-day conference, will explore timely topics in marketing with executives from brands including Coca-Cola, Citi and Frito-Lay. Also this week: Lululemon reports earnings, and it’s the start of Hannukah. See our calendar roundup here.
Barking: In Microsoft’s holiday ad, a dog dreams it’s playing Minecraft, barking at colleagues on a Teams call and soaring through the skies on Flight Simulator. Agency McCann New York actually built a doggie world in Minecraft as part of the campaign. Watch it here, and don’t forget to catch up with Creativity's livestreamed review of the Top 5 creative ideas.
That does it for today’s Wake-Up Call. Thanks for reading and we hope you are all staying safe and well. For more industry news and insight, follow us on Twitter: @adage.
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