Advice From One Cannes Judge to Another

February 03, 2017

"Enjoy the process. This group will never ever be in the same room again together."

Joe Alexander

This is a chance for this year's Presidents to get the advice of their predecessors - the really useful stuff that only another Jury President would know. 

This week, Deutsch’s Chief Creative Officer Pete Favat speaks to his counterpart Joe Alexander, Chief Creative Officer at the Martin Agency. Joe went so far as to produce a special book for his jurors, with advice, illustrations and mantras to guide them through the process. 

Pete Favat: There is bound to be lots of talk, discussion, and perhaps a squabble or three as we narrow down Film winners. Can you share three key tips for keeping the process moving forward, and of course maintaining the peace?

Joe Alexander: “Avoid politics. The film jury can be especially political. Blocs can form for regions, counties, networks. The staff does a great job hindering this. One tip: Move people around every day, sitting in new spots. Let them get to know the whole room and sit by people they don’t know.

“Watch out for rabbit holes. It’s easy to get side-tracked and slowed down by too much debate. Keep things moving. You don’t want to hear “I’ve seen it before.” Get jurors to tell you and have the Festival staff look into it. It’s a drag on the room and often sends it spinning.

“Give everyone a voice. Inevitably there are a couple jurors who are shy and very quiet. Often it’s a language thing. Give them a chance to always weigh in.

“Be present. Keep the phone off. Stay focused. Enjoy the process. This group will never ever be in the same room again together.”

PF: Grand Prix versus Gold. Did you have hard set guidelines for jurors?

JA: “When the audience sees the medals on Saturday night, they will be judging you personally. Be selective. Winning a Gold is very, very rare. Winning a GP is going to live way beyond the year. Make sure it’s something never seen before. In idea, execution, craft, etc.”

PF: How do I get everyone out of there as a reasonable hour?

JA: “It’s your job to know all the rules, deadlines and critical decisions. Use your Festival coordinator in the room who will be awesome. You can’t remind the room enough about the rules. Before we started every day, I went through an agenda and goals for the day. You can’t do that enough – creative people are ADD as you know.”

PF: Who arranged your wardrobe last year? You looked amazing!

JA: "That was my very stylish wife. :)"


Posted By: Joe Alexander

Martin NY MD Talks Diversity in the Industry

January 25, 2017

Equality Within Creativity: Ad Agencies Work Toward Greater Gender Diversity

When national organization She Runs It (formerly Advertising Women of New York, founded in 1934) partnered with EY and LinkedIn on a global study called "Accelerating the Path to Leadership for Women in Marketing and Media" to analyze the differences between men and women as they progress in their careers in the industry, the results were somewhat surprising: Nearly 50 percent of employees at media and creative agencies are women at the entry level, but that number then drops—in a hockey-stick pattern—to just 25 percent at the executive leadership level.

The study—which encompasses nearly 4 million people and more than 4,000 companies across seven subsectors—promoted the proverbial eyebrow raise around “the pervasive and dramatic angle of the hockey stick,” says She Runs It president and CEO Lynn Branigan. “Companies look at that and they’re baffled. They know what’s happening but they’re not sure why, and they’re not quite sure what to do about it.” 

“I believe even over the last couple of years, the drop-off has become worse,” says Amber Guild, managing director of Martin NY. “Something is clearly going on.”

Click here for full article.

Posted By: The Martin Agency

GEICO Takes Top Spot in Ad Awareness Ranking

January 24, 2017

Geico takes No. 1 spot on YouGov's first-ever 'Ad Awareness' ranking

by Kathryn Luttner

New survey reveals a gap between what brands spend and what viewers remember seeing.

With $1.28 billion spent on paid advertising in 2015, Geico doesn’t come close to cracking the list of the world’s 10 most prolific advertisers. But the insurance company with the famously quirky ads nonetheless grabbed the No. 1 spot in YouGov BrandIndex’s first-ever Ad Awareness Rankings, beating out bigger spenders like Verizon Wireless (No. 2) and AT&T (No. 4).

The new rankings are based on an always-on digital survey that poses a single multiple-choice question: Have you seen an ad from this brand within the past two weeks? Geico’s media spend indicates it should rarely have been the most popular answer. But the results suggest there is a gap between what viewers see and what they remember.

Click here for full article.

Posted By: The Martin Agency

Martin Named to Ad Age's Creativity Innovator List

January 23, 2017

CREATIVITY INNOVATORS

The Martin Agency
BY ALEXANDRA JARDINE

Nontraditional thinking and campaigns with a positive cultural impact propelled the Martin Agency once again onto the Creativity Innovators list this year.

They included "World's Biggest Asshole," a provocative PSA for Donate Life, which wanted to reach male millennials and increase sign-up for organ donation. Drawing on stories about donor families being surprised that a family member had registered to be a donor because they were an "asshole" in life, the agency created a character, played by actor Thomas Jane, who's completely horrible in life but redeems himself in death through organ donation. The film had zero paid media, but Donate Life saw almost 30,000 new registrations afterward and organ donation registration was up 698% in five weeks.

Click here for full article.

Posted By: The Martin Agency

Taylor Wiegert Named Top Ten Finalist in Young Innovator Competition

January 19, 2017

Our very own Taylor Wiegert makes the list as a finalist for The Drum's Young Innovator Competition. 

Article below. Full article here.

After 16,000+ votes, the finalists for the Young Innovator Award have been chosen.

The award, in conjunction with Google and The Advertising Club of New York, rewards excellence and innovation by young professionals in advertising, marketing and media. The winner will be chosen by a panel hand-picked by The Ad Club, comprising several high-level professionals in the field and the winner will be announced in the coming weeks. The finalists cover a wide geography and disciplines and are in the running for the $5,000 prize and industry-wide recognition.

“Through this award, we look to celebrate excellence and forward thinking by fresh, young minds,” said Gina Grillo, CEO of The Advertising Club of New York.

And what a celebration it is so far. All of the finalists have achieved a great deal already — and we asked each a few questions to get their perspectives on what innovation means to them, top innovation in the world today, their innovation heroes and what they will do, should they win the competition.

Taylor Wiegert, planning director, UX strategy, The Martin Agency

What does innovation mean to you?

Innovation is key for brands to stand out and earn attention. That’s my daily mindset and what motivates me to always be curious and never stop pushing the possibilities.

What’s the best innovation you’ve seen recently?

The Microsoft Surface Studio marked a pivotal point in consumer computing because Microsoft did the impossible – out-innovated Apple with a product that has ignited a new era for Microsoft.

Who is your innovation hero?

The team of Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky because their work in behavioral economics upended our assumptions on decision-making, paving the way for a new era in human understanding.

Which brand/company is the most innovative, in your opinion?

Snapchat has successfully played by its own rules and built a groundbreaking company. In the process, it’s forced social networking giant Facebook to rethink everything across its suite of products.

If you win the competition, what will you put your winnings towards?

As the first in my family to go to college, I have student loans. I’d put my winnings toward paying for the education that’s given me so much, including consideration for this award.


Posted By: The Martin Agency

Platform Spotlight: Week of January 16, 2017

January 17, 2017

Starting today, we’re going to share a weekly update to give you the latest in platform news and updates, advertising opportunities and other happenings in digital and social.

Facebook Rolling Out Mid-Roll Video Ads

Facebook Video is taking a major step, monetization. Now, videos on Facebook will be able to generate money for publishers with mid-roll advertisements. These mid-roll ads can be inserted 20 seconds into any video that lasts at least 90 seconds, which is a shift from YouTube, which typically runs videos prior to videos, some of which are skippable after five seconds.

The mid-roll ads will be limited to 15 seconds. Facebook will keep 45% of mid-roll ad revenue with publishers taking in the remaining 55%, the same split as YouTube. 

The new mid-roll ads come after Facebook tested the ad format in Facebook Live videos last year.

The introduction of ads into videos makes Facebook Video much more attractive to publishers. Now, they have a monetary reason to invest in creating content for the platform. It also opens up a new way for brands to share their video ads in alignment with content consumers show they care about.  And with ads not showing until at least 20 seconds in, publishers will be pushed to make their content as engaging as possible to keep audiences watching. That, of course, should be closely watched by YouTube, which relies on a similar process with its pre-roll ads.

Instagram Testing Ads Within Stories

Instagram is looking to monetize one of its core features, Instagram Stories. Currently, it is testing video ads which display in between Instagram Stories, as well as live and “formerly live” videos. Advertisers participating in the test have the option to exclude certain content from featuring their brands.

The ads will be sold in an automated system on a CPM basis and targeted by age, gender, location and other factors. Beyond that, brands using Instagram business tools will be able to start viewing data related to their Stories, which will help from an optimization and effectiveness standpoint. Brands will be able to track reach, impressions, replies and exits associated with their Stories.

This announcement comes in tandem with Facebook making a larger effort to monetize its video content with mid-roll ads. It also comes when Instagram revealed that it has 150 million daily users of Instagram Stories, which is a sobering stat for Snapchat, which has 150 million daily active users worldwide of its entire app, not just a single feature.

Instagram’s approach to ads is much like Snapchat’s, which also includes ads in-between Snapchat Stories. But this also gives content creators on Instagram a reason to stay on Instagram versus moving over to Snapchat. For its part, Instagram brings a high degree of targeting, thanks to Facebook’s trove of data.

The big challenge with this rollout, as well as Facebook’s, will be giving brands confidence that their ads won’t show up amongst content they’d rather not be associated with.

Snapchat Introduces New Ad Products

Ahead of an IPO, Snapchat has moved quickly to build a robust ad ecosystem with everything from shoppable ads to an ads API. It’s not stopping there, though.

It now has deep-linking and web auto-fill, both of which will be incredibly helpful for ecommerce brands as well as subscription services. Now, Snap Ads, can be swiped up for a link to be displayed that users can tap to be taken out of Snapchat to a new app, such as a product page for commerce ads as well as songs in music apps. The next update, auto-fill, lets users fill out lead-gen forms with a tap of the screen after seeing an ad. This is a much more streamlined process than filling out personal information manually, which could be particularly helpful for auto brands, membership services and business-to-business companies.

These new ads are a bit of shift for Snapchat, which has been firmly in the build awareness camp in its ad offerings. These are much more about direct response, which will be attractive to a certain and important segment of advertisers. 

The move puts Snapchat more on parity with Facebook in terms of what it can offer and how advertisers can leverage the platform, something that will be critical when it goes public.

Facebook Extends Dynamic Ads to User Web Activity

Facebook’s dynamic ads are getting more… dynamic.  Up until this point, dynamic ads from Facebook were used to retarget users with ads that featured products a user may have looked at on a retailer site or app.

Those dynamic ads are expanding to allow for targeting based on web activity, so a user who has been looking for a product across multiple retailers could be served up an ad by a specific advertiser. Those users don’t have to look for that product on the retailer’s app or website to be targeted as they had to before.

That allows retailers to reach new customers who may be interested in a particular product but don’t have familiarity with the retailer. The retailer can introduce themselves to the consumer through the product they’ve shown interest in.

To participate, advertisers must upload a catalog of products they plan to promote and then select an audience. Facebook then looks at traffic patterns and matches users up to the ads.

Facebook Launches Journalism Project 

Facebook has a new initiative that focuses on local news, new ways to tell stories and methods of combating hoaxes and fake news called the Facebook Journalism Project

According to Facebook, the project includes collaborating with news organizations to learn how to be a better partners and collaborate on product development. In the process, it hopes to educate Facebook users on “news literacy” by working with the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication and others. Facebook will launch “certificate curriculum” with the Poynter Institute for Media Studies that journalists will be able to complete in an effort to give them a better understanding of how to use Facebook.

This tone of collaboration comes after Facebook was highly criticized for its role in spreading fake news, which Facebook initially pushed back against but later acknowledged. Now, it’s taken steps to allow users to report fake news as well as hired a head of news partnerships. 

Beyond greater collaboration, Facebook has a new way for publishers to share news with a magazine-like layout. It lets publishers select several Instant Articles and package them together with a cover image or video. Users can then swipe through the articles and like them, comment or share individual articles. In addition, they can subscribe to receive notifications when new ones are released. 

The layout is much like that offered by Snapchat Discover and is in testing with ten partners, including USA Today, The Washington Post, BuzzFeed and Fox News.

Facebook definitely went from taking a hands-off approach to news to taking one that is very hands-on. At the moment this is public relations, but if Facebook can implement some of these changes, it could have a powerful effect being as its one of the primary places people get their news today. The key for Facebook will be creating a mutually beneficial relationship between publishers and itself, and it appears to be doing that through these new partnerships and tools.

- Taylor Wiegert, Planning Director, UX Strategy

Posted By: The Martin Agency