Edelman Hires Former Leo Burnett Exec, Moves Further Into Ad Agency Territory

September 22, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

In 2013, Edelman stunned the public relations industry by reversing its opposition to paid media placements as the world's largest communications firm effectively pivoted into marketing. Today the company further strengthened its dedication to working both sides of the paid/earned model by naming longtime advertising executive Mark Renshaw as the global chair of its brand practice. Renshaw, who spent more than 18 years with the Leo Burnett organization and most recently served as the Publicis agency's chief digital and innovation officer, joins Edelman in New York to lead an international team of more than 1000 employees. He succeeds Michelle Hutton, who was named COO of Edelman Europe in February. Edelman renamed its former Consumer Marketing group to mark both Renshaw's arrival and its new status as a marketing and reputation firm with a focus on digital media. "Getting Mark is a huge confirmation of our strategy," president and CEO Richard Edelman tells Adweek. "His remit isn't just CPG [consumer packaged goods], it is actually to move the evolution of Edelman forward. He's like the orchestra leader." Over the past year, Edelman has hired a growing number of ad agency veterans to lead its content practices as it competes more directly with both "traditional" shops and digital consultancies like Deloitte in new business pitches. It is one of very few large PR organizations that has begun creating broadcast ads and other forms of paid content for general audiences rather than simply securing editorial placements or producing sponsored content. Renshaw says, "I don't believe that I am making a shift from a creative agency to a PR firm; I am going to a creative company." Yet Edelman is still focused very intently on managing consumers' perceptions—a responsibility that has only grown more valuable in the social media age as brands and their audiences gain more power to shape a given narrative. "There's a huge gap between what people can do for or against a brand on their own versus how marketers think about it now," Renshaw says. "Communications and marketing can come together as consumers move from buyer to [brand] protector or defender." The new global chair will spend much of his time serving Edelman clients in disparate locations like China and India. "I want to reiterate our confidence in him because of his global background," Richard Edelman says, adding, "A lot of this innovation is not necessarily U.S. driven." Renshaw tells Adweek that his decision to accept the Edelman job was not related to the larger Publicis Groupe's recent restructuring moves, some of which coincided with the loss of certain major accounts like McDonald's and P&G. "Discussions started back in April, so it's been in the works for a long time," he says. Regarding his new position, Renshaw says, "I am looking at marcomms from a new angle, reframing my experience and talking to clients to ask them about what they need to succeed in the future." He adds, "Paid media should still come from a place of authenticity."

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Here Are Lots of Ways You Can Shamelessly Cheat in Your Award Show Entries

September 22, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Agencies goosing their award-show entries for a better chance of winning? That never happens. Does it? Such chicanery won't get entrants anywhere at the 2017 North American Effie Awards, that's for sure. That show honors advertising effectiveness. So, to win an Effie, you'll need verifiable real-world results

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Toronto Film Review: ‘Rage’

September 21, 2016  |  Variety  |  No Comments

An astute mixture of multi-strand drama and murder mystery that engrosses for two solid hours--before collapsing into bathos.

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This San Francisco Creative Agency Wants to Be a ‘Beacon’ for the Freelance Community

September 20, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Specs Who (L. to r.) Co-founders John Sheehan, John Reid and Ben Latimer What Creative agency Where San Francisco RSL + Crew was founded last year by John Reid, John Sheehan and Ben Latimer (the R, S and L of RSL) for one mission: to create Yelp's first national campaign . But the agency is still going strong and has developed what they believe is a uniquely efficient agency model. Instead of using full-time staffers, the shop pulls from a crew list of over 450 people across 17 disciplines (everything from sports to electronics) to staff up or down as needed. "What we rely on, the lifeblood of our model, is the freelance economy, which is pretty robust here in San Francisco," said Sheehan. "We're able to find smart senior people who have chosen [freelance] as a lifestyle versus working at a traditional agency." But the shop, whose other clients include Rockwood Capital and the San Francisco Public Library, isn't looking to exploit freelancers. "Philosophically, we, RSL, want to give back to that community and pay tribute to them," explained Sheehan. "Whether it's things like trying to help them with benefits or office space, we want to play that side as well and be seen as a beacon for that freelance community." This story first appeared in the September 19, 2016 issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.

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How Play-Doh Went From Being a Household Cleaning Supply to a Beloved Toy

September 20, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Joseph McVicker was in big trouble. Kutol Products, his Cincinnati company, manufactured a gummy, doughy product that housewives used to remove coal soot from wallpaper. But now it was 1955. Not only were vinyl wallpapers coming onto the market, but homes were switching from coal stoves to oil and natural gas that burned cleaner. Kutol was fast becoming obsolete. Play-Doh lion crafted by Emily Shellenberger; Prop stying and lettering: Dianna McDougall; Photo: Raquel Beauchamp That might have been the end of it for McVicker were it not for his sister-in-law Kay who happened to be a nursery school teacher

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‘You’re the Worst’ Star Aya Cash on Finding Validation Through Instagram

September 20, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Specs Age 34 Claim to fame Stars on FXX's You're the Worst (Wednesdays, 10 p.m.); appears in the new Netflix anthology series Easy (premieres Sept. 22) Base New York Twitter @maybeAyaCash Adweek: What's the first information you consume when you wake up in the morning? Aya Cash: I would like to say that I make a cup of coffee and I read and meditate, but I absolutely pick my phone right up to check my email, and often when the show is airing, I check my social media as well. Do you not use social media when the show is on hiatus? Yeah, I try not to. I take [social media apps] off my phone on the regular, and I never have alerts turned on, which is very helpful in keeping me less engaged. But unfortunately when the show is airing, I tend to be on it way too much. I try to set boundaries. I don't think social media is innately evil; I just think the way I use it is. So how do you use it? You know, the constantly checking … I've even joked about it in posts where I'm like, "Please validate me right now because I'm feeling shitty, but here's a picture of me looking like I've never looked in my life!" Sometimes you get on and feel bad about yourself because everybody's life looks better than yours and then you look at your [social media] and realize your own life looks better than yours and you think, "What am I contributing to?!" You often Instagram your reading list, which is pretty cool. Well, my mom's a writer and I'm also an only child, so I grew up reading a lot. Once on Twitter I asked people to recommend some books for me, and I ended up reading six or seven of the recommendations and liking them all. There's actually another actress—I won't name her name—who actively pursued a friendship with me based on my reading list [laughs]. What's on your list right now

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Warren Beatty To Be Honored by Santa Barbara Film Fest

September 20, 2016  |  Variety  |  No Comments

"Rules Don't Apply" director and star Warren Beatty will receive the 11th annual Kirk Douglas Award for Excellence in Film.

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Marketers Are Getting the Snapchat Targeting Data They Want. Will That Scare Off Users?

September 19, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Having wowed advertisers at the Cannes Lions in June with the unveiling of its long-awaited ad tech platform, Snapchat has shown no signs of slowing down. The popular messaging app plans to attract deep-pocketed marketers and investors with the introduction of in-app behavioral targeting in the fourth quarter timed to a rumored IPO. To improve ad targeting, the popular messaging app last week announced Snap Audience Match, which lets brands take their email lists and files of mobile device IDs, and then anonymously sync the data with Snapchat's user pool. The company also will let a brand target viewers based on what content categories they follow. A Fortune 500 marketer, who requested anonymity, said talks are underway with Snapchat to launch pilot programs around the ad-targeting initiative.

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Why So Many Legacy Fast-Food Restaurants Are Getting Makeovers

September 19, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

When it comes to dining, no matter the cost of the meal, millennials place a premium on overall experience and that includes comfortable, well-appointed spaces, say marketing analysts. Having seen the steady rise of fast-casual competitors like Shake Shack and Panera Bread , legacy fast-food chains like KFC, Arby's and Taco Bell now are busy sprucing up their decor. "Good design is no longer reserved for high-end experiences," said Susan Cantor, CEO of Red Peak Branding. Consumers care that they're in a pleasant, well-designed, clean and beautiful environment. When it comes to fast food, reliable food and quick service are no longer enough to satisfy millennials, said Lori Gross, executive director of strategy and growth at Landor. "It's about curating the whole look, tone and feel: all the touch points that will capture the consumer," she said. KFC's first redesigned restaurant opened in October 2014, and it featured red and white pinstripes, an ode to KFC's bucket from the 1970s, on both the exterior and interior, with a large rendering of Colonel Sanders prominently featured on the front of the building. The chain has redesigned 100 restaurants so far, and it plans to redesign 70 percent of its U.S. restaurants in the next three years. "We want to recommit to our roots and engage consumers through our interior and exterior design," explained Brian Cahoe, chief development officer at KFC .

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OMD’s Digital Head Wants to Foster Cooperation Between Media and Creative Partners

September 19, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Specs Current gig OMD, chief digital and innovation officer Previous gig Meredith Xcelerated Marketing, chief innovation officer, general manager Twitter @dougs_digs Age 41 Adweek: You've been OMD 's chief digital and innovation officer for about three months. What's that role like? Doug Rozen: On the digital side, it's really about ensuring that all clients, as well as ourselves internally, are delivering against the fullest and widest array of digital possibilities. For me, what this comes down to is that digital today is not any particular thing or any specific channel—it really stretches across all [channels] and is about rising above talking about TV, print, radio, desktop, etcetera, as channels, and start talking more about formats like audio, video, visual and how then digital allows those formats to be addressable. Now coupled with that is the innovation side, and innovation is not just big media breakthroughs—although they are awesome and necessary—to me it's about every client [having] an innovation agenda. What do you mean by that

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