The Optimum Cat Café

August 14, 2015

Last week, our Optimum client took their effort to ‘bring you closer to the things you love’ to a whole new level. A feline level, that is.

As an extension of their latest spot Let’s Connect More: Cats, Optimum teamed up with the North Shore Animal League of America to create a real-live Cat Café in Hoboken.

For five hours a day for five days, people could come hang out and play with cats, all which were available for adoption, while accessing Optimum’s incredibly speedy wifi for free.

Throughout the event, nearly 1,000 people came out to experience The Cat Café, 11 animals were adopted, and Optimum matched a dollar to the North Shore Animal League of America for every use of the #tristatecats hashtag, totaling over one thousand dollars. Twitter alone generated 10.8MM impressions for the hashtag, and the event was covered on several news blogs, generating attention through the country.

Optimum is known for bringing you closer to a more colorful world. The Cat Café was just the beginning.

Posted By: The Martin Agency

The magic formula for hiring talent? There isn't one

August 14, 2015

Campaign US, By Kay Lawson, SVP/Director of Recruiting

Everywhere you turn in the advertising industry, talent emerges as the hottest topic. It’s an understatement to say that finding the right talent is a challenge. Agencies are desperately searching for the elusive magic formula — or at least some sort of plan to follow.

I have an ongoing fascination with the hunt for great talent and have often been asked to rationalize how I know a candidate is a great fit. The irony is that having a nose for great recruiting is seldom rational. Instinct carries more weight.

While there is no magic formula, in my experience it comes down to some pretty basic principles — with common sense, a bit of luck and good timing thrown in.

Screen for talent, hire for heart
Most companies hire for skill and fire for fit. On the front end, it’s important to screen for skills and experience but at the end of the day, cultural fit is key. We think of our culture as "Good & Tough": good to each other and tough on the work. That "good to each other" part is critical. All the talent in the world won’t compensate for someone who doesn’t fit your organization and share your company’s core values. We can teach people almost any skill, but we can’t teach integrity, character and work ethic.

Grow your own
In our quest for the shiny new object — that hot prospect from another company — we sometimes fail to realize that the best person for the job is within our own walls. Some of our most prized employees have grown and evolved at the agency. Hiring from within is a huge success, a sign of good nurturing and development, to spot and support someone with promise in another discipline.

See potential
No candidate will tick every box. Imagine what a candidate could become in your agency, with proper support and teaching. It’s worth the gamble to hire that future person rather than the one sitting right in front of you. Have the courage and take the chance.

Know what you want
Hiring the right talent starts with a thoughtful, detailed, realistic brief that the hiring manager and decision makers agree upon. Otherwise people go in different directions with how they interview, the questions they ask and their feedback on candidates. Then you have too many cooks in the kitchen. When you know what you want with everyone on the same page, you can streamline what otherwise can be a long and laborious interview process, dreaded by the agency and candidates alike.

Own it
The hiring managers must be part of the agency sell and own the journey to making a great hire. Make a personal, direct connection to the candidate. Hiring by committee never works, so a good hiring manager needs to be definitive and decisive.

The gut check
The art of recruiting is intangible. It’s that gut feeling in the pit of your stomach. If the best candidate looks good on paper and even has a majority of supportive interviewers, and you still feel unconvinced for some small, perhaps undefinable reason, listen to your instincts. Probe further and dig deeper, and if that doesn’t soothe your misgivings, walk away from the candidate. Recruiting, hiring and working together all boil down to relationships. Things that bother you when you’re dating can cause divorce down the road — same applies for hiring talent.

Kay Lawson is the SVP, director of recruiting, at The Martin Agency.

Continue to Campaign US.

Posted By: The Martin Agency

Martin London recruits Daniel Fisher

August 13, 2015

The Martin Agency, the Interpublic shop, has appointed Daniel Fisher, the deputy executive creative director at Adam & Eve/DDB, as the first executive creative director of Martin London.

Fisher will look to build the agency, which currently has five staff, and work with brands including Npower, Education UK and WWF.

Ian Davidson, Martin’s managing director, international, has been running the London office since it opened last year. Fisher will now be involved in recruiting a permanent London managing director and a chief strategist.

He will work with Brian Williams, Martin London’s deputy executive creative director. Williams relocated from the headquarters in Richmond, Virginia.

At A&E/DDB, Fisher and his partner, Richard Brim, created John Lewis’ "Monty the penguin" in 2014 when they were creative directors.

Fisher was promoted to deputy executive creative director in January while Brim became an executive creative director alongside Ben Tollett.

Matt Williams, Martin’s chief executive, said: "There is always room for great work and that’s how we plan to grow our presence. With Dan on board, we can do that."

Continue to Campaign.

Posted By: The Martin Agency

Ad of the Day: Sea Monster Terrorizes Golf Course in Geico's New 'It's What You Do' Spot

August 11, 2015

Adweek, By Tim Nudd

If you're Geico, you whip up another comically goofy commercial and make sure everyone sees it by taking over the YouTube masthead before rolling it out to TV. It's what you do.

While it recently experimented with another shop for some short spots, Geico is continuing its long-running relationship with The Martin Agency, unveiled the latest "It's what you do" spot on YouTube over the weekend before launching it Monday in broadcast.

The action this time takes place on a golf course, where a giant sea monster emerges from a water hazard to wreak some havoc, which a 9 iron just can't handle. But it's not the sea monster's behavior but that of the announcers that serves as the punch line here.

Continue to Adweek.

Posted By: The Martin Agency

Martin Announces Additions to Creative Staff

July 21, 2015

Over the past few months, we've added a bunch of creative talent to our roster. Meet the latest and greatest.

L to R

1st Row

Marco Worsham, Senior Art Director

A native of Richmond, Marco has spent time in Atlanta, San Francisco, Boston and New York working on brands like Adidas, Hummer, McDonalds and Mike’s Hard Lemonade. He also has a published children’s book inspired by his daughter.

Casey Hall, Senior Copywriter

Partners with Beth Fujiura, Casey is a talented illustrator, and got his start in web design and development, but found his calling as a writer while participating in the WK12.

Beth Fujiura, Senior Art Director

Both Beth and her partner, Casey, join us after several years in China, first at Wieden Shanghai, and then freelancing for BBH’s outpost there. They met through Wieden’s advertising school/intern program, The WK12, in 2009, and were subsequently hired on in Portland to work on Target, Dodge and Coke.

Jesse Mitchell, Art Director

Before joining Martin, Jesse spent the last three years at Olson, where he worked on Saucony, Whole Foods, Sharp, Pepsi and McDonald’s, among others.

Mik Manulik, Senior Copywriter

Before joining Martin, Mik worked at CP+B in Boulder and Miami for almost seven years. While there he worked on Microsoft, Velveeta , Angel's Envy, Burger King, Jell-O and American Express. Before that, Mik worked at Publicis in Seattle.

Scot Crooker, Senior Art Director

Scot joins us from Van Winkle + Pearce in Atlanta where he was running Ancestory.com and Homewood Suites. Prior to VW+P, Scot was at Brunner and before that, BBDO, where he worked as the creative lead on REI.

2nd Row

Marcelo Mariano, Associate Creative Director

Marcelo joins Martin from JWT Brazil, where he worked as an ACD on Ford.

Andrew Maaldrink, Senior Copywriter

Alex Herwig and Andrew Maaldrink are a creative team from the Netherlands. Their combined height of 13.5” feet explains their nickname: the Tallest Team in Advertising. Previous to joining The Martin Agency Andrew worked as a copywriter in Amsterdam at TBWA, Y&R and Alfred. His best known work is security footage of a guy stealing a television (LG Thief). His personal favorite is a election quiz using people's brand preferences (Brand Voting). Art director Alex used to work at Havas in Amsterdam where he created a social media driven fundraising campaign for an orchestra (Tweetphony). He later joined DDB & Tribal Amsterdam to raise puppies and a lot of publicity for KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (Sherlock).

David Byrd, Associate Creative Director

David comes to Martin from EVB in San Francisco. Prior to that he was at Goodby, Silverstein & Partners.

Josh Leutz, VP/Creative Director

Previously, Josh was a Creative Director at Butler Shine Stern & Partners where he wrote a new global brand platform for MINI and worked on recruitment efforts for Google.

Alex Herwig, Senior Art Director

Alex Herwig and Andrew Maaldrink are a creative team from the Netherlands. Their combined height of 13.5” feet explains their nickname: the Tallest Team in Advertising. Previous to joining The Martin Agency Andrew worked as a copywriter in Amsterdam at TBWA, Y&R and Alfred. His best known work is security footage of a guy stealing a television (LG Thief). His personal favorite is a election quiz using people's brand preferences (Brand Voting). Art director Alex used to work at Havas in Amsterdam where he created a social media driven fundraising campaign for an orchestra (Tweetphony). He later joined DDB & Tribal Amsterdam to raise puppies and a lot of publicity for KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (Sherlock).


Posted By: The Martin Agency

Oreo Thins Named Adweek's Spot of the Day

July 20, 2015

The new Oreo Thins get a formal introduction today with a "Wonderfilled" spot from The Martin Agency that suggests the thinner cookies are a thing of wonder even if they're not quite as filled as their forebears.

Dutch production house MediaMonks Films (and directors Rogier Schalken and Magnus Hierta) did the animation for the :30, which has a pleasantly faux-epic vibe thanks to its soundtrack's mashup of Strauss' 119-year-old "Thus Spake Zarathustra" with the 2-year-old Martin-written "Wonderfilled" song.

The spot certainly leans into the product's thinness, portraying it as almost paperlike in a cute, short series of animations. In announcing the product two weeks ago, Oreo said it was "following 'thin' cues in technology" and putting "a sleek and modern spin on a classic."

The ad shows off this inspiration, too. When the cookie turns sideways to form the "i" in the word THINS, it's like any number of tech ads where the gadget spins sideways to show off a slender frame.

The cookies hit store shelves last week in Original, Golden and Mint flavors—a permanent addition to the Oreo line. In addition to the TV spot, the marketing campaign will also include lots of social activity, including an upcoming video that shows how the more sophisticated Oreo Thins gives the "forgotten" pinky finger a new reason to be, and a series of new etiquette rules around how to "properly" enjoy the Oreo Thins.

And if you're not into being this sophisticated, or you're flat-out angry about the creme reduction, you always have Double Stuf to fall back on.

Continue to Adweek.

Posted By: The Martin Agency