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Our Mission is to drive creativity and innovation across the southwest creative and media sectors, building the fame of the region.

New members are always welcome. Please enjoy our site and join one of the UK’s strongest creative communities.

Latest news from The Drum

Maclaren McCann Canada names new chief creative
Posted on Friday May 29, 2015

Maclaren McCann Canada has named Darren Clarke, formerly executive creative director ot Taxi, as its new chief creative officer (CCO).

While at Taxi, he led the agency in receiving multiple awards including Cannes Lions, Andys and Effies.

“Darren has a history of great work at the best agencies in Canada,” said Rob Reilly, global creative chairman of McCann Worldgroup. “He will bring those skills and energy to set a new creative bar at MacLaren McCann and I like that.”

In his new role, Clarke hopes to replicate McCann’s worldwide reputation within Canada.

“McCann has gained a lot of attention with its creative product around the world. Now it’s time for Canada to add to that. And that’s exactly what we’re going to do,” said Clarke.

Clarke will begin his new post in July.



Amazon reportedly set to launch own food and household brand
Posted on Friday May 29, 2015

Amazon has reportedly begun the process of creating its own food brand, having sought out trademark protection on a private label. 

According to the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) the e-tail giant has sought the trademark protection for multiple household items - both perishable and non-perishable, including juice, milk, diapers, razors, pasta and cleaning products.

The sales would be very similar to grocery store-branded products, with Amazon products being sold beside name-brands.

These goods would be made available to Prime customers who pay a $99 yearly fee for their memberships.

It is still unclear how the goods will be priced, but it seems likely that they would be available with Amazon’s fresh grocery delivery service, which is already available in multiple larger US cities.

The news comes a day after Amazon revealed plans to start offering free one-day shipping to certain Prime members.

The Chip Shop Awards come to life as Bristol pensioner posts £20-an-hour nude cleaner shop window advert
Posted on Friday May 29, 2015

It might seem like something straight out of the Chip Shop Awards but a self-confessed ‘voyeur’ pensioner really has put up a shop window postcard offering £20-an-hour for a nude cleaner.

The advert – posted in the window of a local newsagent in Bristol – targets women aged 20-55 with the guarantee ‘work today, earn today’. Tasks include dusting and general tidying.

The 69-year-old who posted the advert told the press that this would be his fourth employee in as many years and said: “I’m not doing anything illegal. I’m not harming anyone. I’m a voyeur, in the truest sense of the word.”

He added he’d been given the idea from an old friend in London and that his first advert got 11 replies. His most recent advert has had two genuine responses.

“I look for somebody who is interesting physically and somebody who has a life. Someone who feels happy within themselves,” he said. “I think humans are interesting in all shapes and sizes, but a person’s personality shines through when they are in the nude.”

Toby Southgate named WPP’s Brand Union worldwide CEO
Posted on Friday May 29, 2015

WPP’s Brand Union has promoted Toby Southgate from chief executive (CEO) of the Americas to worldwide CEO.

In this role, Southgate, based in New York, will keep his current Americas responsibilities while monitoring global growth.

“I love this business and I’m proud to be leading Brand Union beyond the traditional definition of branding. I’m delighted Simon has given me the chance to lead the network,” said Southgate. “Brand Union is all about creating brilliantly designed and beautifully connected experiences for our clients and their brands. There is much more to come.”

During his seven years at Brand Union, Southgate has landed major clients including The Coca-Cola Company, Vodafone and Shazam.

“Toby is a true professional in our industry and a trusted adviser to senior clients all around our network,” said Simon Bolton, group CEO of Brand Union and Fitch. “He has a unique thought process and leadership style that enables him to have compelling conversations with clients, prospects and talent alike. I have no doubt Toby has what it takes to step into this role on a worldwide stage and take Brand Union to the next level.”

Southgate will begin his new post on 1 July and will report directly to Bolton.

Ad of the Day: Kraft – Orange Square
Posted on Friday May 29, 2015

Kraft plays mind games on viewers in its latest quirky spot to promote the company’s single cheese slices.

Created by Toronto-based Union, the narrator of the ad convinces those watching that if they’re craving a grilled cheese, they just might begin to think that the orange square on the screen is in fact a Kraft Single.

The video features the sounds of a grilled cheese being made as the orange square slowly turns into a slice of melted cheese in the ‘warm embrace of pillowy, toasted bread.’

By the end, he reminds viewers that the sandwich is only in their minds – and that it was actually just an orange square all along.


Advertising Agency: UNION, Toronto, Canada
Executive Creative Director: Lance Martin
Associate Creative Director / Art Director: Glen D’Souza
Associate Creative Director / Copywriter: Mike Takasaki
Producer: Grace Lee
Account Director: Tyler Brown
Sound Design: Keen Audio
Post Production: The Juggernaut
Published: May 2015

Sainsbury’s inks deal with ITV for crowd-sourced summer campaign
Posted on Friday May 29, 2015

Sainsbury’s has inked a deal with ITV that will see it run a TV campaign based on content submitted by the public.

The ‘Get Summer Started’ campaign was developed on the insight that small events or moments build excitement in summer, such as barbecues or eating lunch outside.

The 11 TV executions will run across ITV to highlight these moments and the role Sainsbury’s plays, with one of the executions also dedicated to Sainsbury’s Bank.

Ten further adverts will later air based on videos or images submitted by the public via Saisbury’s Twitter and Facebook pages. This content will be then be combined with ITN’s footage of Britain’s summer events across the country.

The first wave of the campaign will launch during the Britain’s Got Talent final on Sunday 31 May. The campaign will then run on ITV1 for six weeks until 17 July.

Annie Dawson, head of campaign management at Sainsbury’s said: “This is a great opportunity for us to establish the start of summer with our customers.  Our research has helped us to understand the importance our customers place on planning the summer and ensure we offer a wide choice of products to help support them with these experiences”

The idea was developed by Omnicom Media Group’s PHD and content agency Drum.

Brand Vine Chart: Next, Paul Smith and Ikea come out on top
Posted on Friday May 29, 2015

Welcome to The Drum's Brand Vine chart, powered by Burst, the short-form social video specialists.

The chart is ranked on the number of loops generated by brands on the video sharing service each week.

Next tops this week's stylish chart with a carousel clip of its the Autumn collection.

The British brand's six-second video increased the channel's loop count by over 1687 per cent.

Meanwhile, Paul Smith came a fashionable second, thanks to a Vine inviting customers to pick up a copy of American artist Jeff Koons' new monograph in-store.

The clip gave fans a sneak peek of the book, which features analysis from critics and art historians as well as hundreds of coloruful large-images tracing Koons' career.

And a quirky video showing DIYers how to achieve pretty floral décor in a few simple steps earned Ikea third place and took the Swedish brand's total number of loops up to 748,500.

Puma, HTC and Chelsea also made it into the chart.

Vine Chart


Vine by nextofficial

Brand: nextofficial
Weekly Increase: +1 687.39%
Current loops: 569,141

Vine by Paul Smith

Brand: Paul Smith
Weekly Increase: +24.50%
Current loops: 3,731,402

Vine by IKEA USA

Brand: DesignByIKEA
Weekly Increase: +23.13%
Current loops: 748,500

Vine by Virgin

Brand: Virgin
Weekly Increase: +10.39%
Current loops: 120,945

Vine by Chelsea FC

Brand: Chelsea FC
Weekly Increase: +9.18%
Current loops: 154,548,247

Vine by PizzaExpress

Brand: PizzaExpress
Weekly Increase: +6.17%
Current loops: 1,259,480

Vine by Manchester United

Brand: Manchester United
Weekly Increase: +5.28%
Current loops: 105,608,451

Vine by Disney Parks

Brand: Disney Parks
Weekly Increase: +4.57%
Current loops: 9,685,301

Vine by HTC

Brand: HTC
Weekly Increase: +4.49%
Current loops: 525,193

Vine by PUMA

Brand: Puma
Weekly Increase: +3.85%
Current loops: 1,208,170

New Birmingham City University campaign takes shape
Posted on Friday May 29, 2015

Birmingham City University’s role in producing students who go on to 'shape the world’ is the focus of a major new brand campaign, developed by Chapter.

Showcasing talented graduates who have influenced the work of Harrods, Aston Martin, Disney, among a host of influential brands, the campaign is visible across the region on billboards, trains and phone boxes, as well as integrating with online and social media.

The summer campaign backs up the University's rapid expansion programme, centred on a major development of its growing campus in the centre of the UK’s second city. The university is investing over £260 million in providing state-of-the-art facilities for students and regenerating the previously neglected Eastside of Birmingham's city centre. 

Dawn Vos, assistant director of marketing at the university, said: "Anyone who has seen the new campus right in the heart of Birmingham will know that we are literally transforming the city as well as the lives of students that come to the university who can go onto have hugely successful careers. Our graduates are already going out there and having a real impact on the world."

Ricky Neault, director at Chapter, said: ‘This campaign is a real celebration of potential. Birmingham City University has world-class facilities and gives students practical, real-life experience meaning they are equipped to go out there and do something great.  The proof is in the graduates who are already doing it and this campaign simply reminds young people that they can think big and go out there and do anything they want to do – and Birmingham City University will help them get there."

The new campaign reflects both the ambitions of the university and the potential of undergraduates by focusing on their potential to ’Shape the world’. Notable former students at Birmingham City university include pop star Laura Mvula, YouTube sensation Lily Pebbles and Coronation Street actress Catherine Tyseley.

The curse of irrelevant 'relevance': Why we should all be cautious about exploiting the next big thing
Posted on Friday May 29, 2015

This week Warc produced a new Trends snapshot, Livestreaming apps – the value of Periscope and Meerkat for brands, that cautioned marketeers against charging headlong into adoption of these new media technologies without a real understanding of the role they play in consumers' lives or any clear objectives of what your brand is trying to get out of it.

On the one hand, I despair that we need Warc to tell us to have some objectives before we stick our brands on the next big thing, but on the other hand I’m not surprised at all. I’ve been ranting for a while against the overwhelming inclination of the marketing services industry to exploit new media to the point of exhaustion in their desire to be seen to be innovative and 'relevant' to the next generation of consumers.

A few months ago I came across this piece from Steve Cater, published here on The Drum, that suggested that brands were ruining social media by treating them as just 'media' in the advertising sense of the word. By treating social media as just another way to get brand messages in front of an audience, we were in danger of destroying any value that the medium might have.

A year or so later and it sounds like we are going to ruin livestreaming apps in the same way that we may have ruined social media.

Whilst I wasn’t surprised, I did start to wonder why this keeps happening. Why do we all rush to adopt new technologies for our marketing communications when we haven’t even figured out how the current media are actually working for us? What is the driving force behind this unrelenting appetite for media exploitation?

My current working hypothesis (for today) is that the problem stems from the massive overuse of one particular word: Relevance.

Every brand I’ve ever worked on is striving to make their brand more relevant. Virtually every media campaign I have planned has striven to find 'relevant media moments' at the right time, right place and for the right people. It’s the 3 Rs of marketing – Relevance, Relevance, Relevance!

Because of that one word we can justify sticking our brand into any new media by arguing that being in that place makes our brand more relevant simply because our consumers are using it.

Now I’m not saying that relevance isn’t important, quite the opposite. But relevance is about so much more than a simple equation of

X media is used by Y consumer

Z brand is in X media

Z brand is therefore relevant to Y

When we say we want our brand to be relevant to consumers what we actually mean is that we want to help consumers understand how, why and when they should use our brand and product – how it fits into their lives.

The power of media to help in achieving that understanding is that we can deliver our message in a context which reminds consumers of their own personal needs and so presents the product as part of the narrative of their lives. As a result the brand is much more likely to be remembered when the consumer is actively in market which is essentially all we are trying to do – make people more likely to buy our product than someone else's.

The essential thing to remember is that the raw medium itself very rarely imbues any relevance upon the brand using it. Being on TV doesn’t in itself say a great deal about a brand any more than being in newspapers or in online display advertising.

The relevance comes from everything else: the other content that is being consumed, the time of day it is being consumed, the place, the other people you consume it with etc.

A well-crafted contextual campaign can add value to a medium by enhancing and fleshing out an existing consumer narrative, but a lazy advertising campaign that merely uses a medium because there are some eyeballs there is irrelevant and exploitative and consumers will see through it very quickly.

That’s the big issue here. Consumers don’t just ignore irrelevant brands – they resent them for ruining the thing that they were otherwise enjoying!

If you are in doubt as to whether your use of a new medium is relevant or exploitative there is a fairly simple test you can use. One simple question: “What true value does the consumer get out of this that they don’t get from my other communications?”

If you can’t think of anything (honestly then you probably should look to spend your effort and budget elsewhere – ideally somewhere that delivers that other important media metric that begins with 'R': Reach!

Dan Plant is group strategy director and real-time planning director at MEC

The future will be televised (in seconds, on mobile)
Posted on Friday May 29, 2015

The seminal Internet Trends report by Mary Meeker, an annual release that has become the stuff of legend, landed on my digital doorstep this week. Naturally, I skim-read it via mobile, on the go. Those damn millennials huh.

Meeker, since 2001, has built a reputation as an online oracle with the ability to factualise much talked about online trends. Many of the technology trends Meeker has covered as being innovative at the time are now mainstay, or antiquated, showing how far tech and marketing techniques have evolved in the 14 years since Meeker’s reporting began.

We’re now in the era of the mobile-first generation; online anywhere and everywhere, always filtering, content consumers. Meeker debuts short-form video this year as one of her accelerating bright spots for brands to get excited about.