Thursday, September 28, 2006

GTAF Luncheon

Yesterday Jessica, Ashley and I attended the GTAF business development panel/luncheon. It was at the University Center, which is always nice. There were three panelist; Dale Brill, the head honcho from VisitFlorida, whom we've all heard speak about 500 times (but he's super entertaining and always has good stuff to say), Rob Cherof, the Executive VP of BBDO Atlanta, and Mark Raciappa, a business coach from Action International. Dale and Rob had some great tips to offer up about selecting new business, making pitches, and how to not get new business. Didn't think Mark's comments were as applicable, but he was a good speaker as well. Some highlights from the lunch:

1. On how to get new business -
"Find out what their pain is and show how you can alleviate it," Dale Brill
I thought this was the best piece of advice. A lot of new business pitches can get carried away with showing cool creative and trying to dazzle the client. All they need is reassurance that you know where it hurts and you have a pack of Band-Aids.

2. On how much to spend on new business -
"Spend as much as it takes to win. But don't spend stupid money," Rob Cherof
He explained that each pitch needs to be evaluated and if it's a good fit for the business, spend whatever you need to in order to get the client. Coming in second gets you nothing. Of course, he also stressed that spending more than the actual contract would be worth is a bad idea (obviously, but again, it's easy to get carried away).
On that same note, Rob also discussed that winning new business is a major morale booster. Every agency goes through a period of time when they don't win much new business - or - they keep losing it, which really sucks and is depressing. This is when it becomes tempting to go after anything. Don't do that! There is not only a financial cost for pursuing new business, but also an energy cost. Continuing to lose will bring the agency down even more.

3. On what to bring to the pitch -
Bringing full creative/plans is bad! We all know this, but lots of government clients expect to see their problem solved. I know that when you submit media plans for government clients, they expect a fully negotiated plan (which is the worst situation ever! It's very difficult to negotiate with stations for lower rates when you don't have the client!). Rob said that "insights need to be brought to the table." I really liked this because I've been taking an account planning course that is all about consumer insights. I also spoke with an account planner and he was all about insights. Everyone loves insights!

4. Lastly, my favorite quote of the day was from Rob Cherof and is relevant due to recent ad industry complaining - "I hate RFPs. Everyone can dress up once. It's easy to rent a tux." haha we all hate RFPs - they are definitely no fun (especially media buying ones!).

Oh, and the lunch next month will feature our city's big agency; The Zimmerman Agency. They will talk about how to become a national agency.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Publicis is old

Publicis took out pages of ad space in the most recent Advertising Age. Within the special section there are various "congrats" ads from Publicis clients wishing them a happy anniversary and thanking them for their creative thinking. I'm wondering - did Publicis (or one of its agencies) design these ads? 'Cause that would be kinda funny.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

I hope that I never believe this:

"Advertising exists to sell products. We don't have a social responsibility, we have a commercial responsibility," he says. "Social responsibility lies with human beings and human beings make advertising.

"It's my responsibility as an individual, but not my industry's. My industry's not made for that." ~Sergio Valente, chief executive of DM9DDB in Brazil

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Tuesday, September 19, 2006


Just a quick update on my life...

Trying to get over a nasty cold. And I'm a huge wimp about it. got medicine from the Doc, so hopefully that will help.

About halfway through the book, Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs, by Chuck Klosterman. I love it. There's an entire chapter analyzing Saved by the Bell.

About 30 pages into The Fall of Advertising and the Rise of PR. The Ries duo takes stabs at many great ad campaigns. Disses Nike and Target - just the folks I thought were doing it right! Oh well, there's always a critic. Either way, I still like advertising better than PR (so there!).

Also reading Truth, Lies, and Advertising: The Art of Account Planning, and How to Plan Advertising. Both are required for class, but still interesting. Like the first better - lots of stories about famous ad people.

New favorite song: Soul Meets Body (Death Cab For Cutie)
Love the "I do believe it's true, that there are roads left in both of our shoes" part. Here are the lyrics:

I want to live where soul meets body
And let the sun wrap its arms around me
And bathe my skin in water cool and cleansing
And feel, feel what its like to be new

Cause in my head there’s a greyhound station
Where I send my thoughts to far off destinations
So they may have a chance of finding a place
where they’re far more suited than here

I cannot guess what we'll discover
We turn the dirt with our palms cupped like shovels
But I know our filthy hands can wash one another’s
And not one speck will remain

I do believe it’s true
That there are roads left in both of our shoes
If the silence takes you
Then I hope it takes me too
So brown eyes I hold you near
Cause you’re the only song I want to hear
A melody softly soaring through my atmosphere

Where soul meets body
Where soul meets body
Where soul meets body

I do believe it’s true
That there are roads left in both of our shoes
If the silence takes you
Then I hope it takes me too
So brown eyes I hold you near
Cause you’re the only song I want to hear
A melody softly soaring through my atmosphere

Favorite new band is The Fray. Their song, "How to Save a Life" has been on Grey's Anatomy, House, and Scrubs. Geez! They took it literally.

Oh yea, Seminoles lost their last game against Clemson. Again. I should've just stayed home and watched Law and Order SVU. But Rob visited from Orlando for the weekend, so it was still fun.

Saw the best promotion ever on game day. Rob and I drove to a gas station b/c we saw a huge SoBe truck giving away free stuff. I got a Starbucks drink, bottle-opener key chain, X101.5 CD, and - get this - $10 of FREE GAS! It was like Christmas.

Otherwise, living the dream, planning a trip to NYC in November, running a lot, reading a lot, playing with the is chill!

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

the offices connect

The other day we had an agency-wide meeting that included one of our (best) creatives out in Wisconsin. That's right, we are totally connected - we see him, he sees us, we hear him, he hears us - all through the computer! It was really neat to actually see it happen. I read a story recently in AdAge (I think) about how CP & B is now completely wired from their Miami office to their new Colorado location and that they connect in the same way my agency now does. It made me kind of proud to work for such a cool company. It was definitely a futuristic experience.

Now I also have a bit of a rant involving the class I'm taking (account planning). We had a project last week where we chose current campaigns, analyzed 'em, and presented them to class. One of the things we had to come up with was the consumer insight that drove the campaign. My group presented the new Jeep Compass (SUV) campaign. It's the one with the bobble-heads.

We had trouble coming up with a consumer insight. We didn't get the time to really research, but we came up with the idea that b/c the ad featured old school hip hop music (and they even had a singing ad in Cosmo that must have cost a FORTUNE), city scenes, and a diverse "cast," the target audience was young city-dwellers. So why would young city dwellers want a Jeep Compass?

We thought that there must be something about SUVs in general that made them cool enough for someone living in a city to want one. So maybe it's the SUV lifestyle that people like? Maybe they like having the power, the size, the height, or even just the option of driving up a mountain?

The ads themselves never really focused on drive features exclusive to an SUV(except the print ads did mention all-wheel drive), but rather on the storage capacity, fuel efficieny, amount of passengers and stereo system. This lead us to believe that perhaps Jeep found that younger car buyers are looking for a car that gives them social kudos by allowing them to play the music they like and bring all their friends, doesn't make them feel guilty about spending too much cash on gas, but is still big and makes them look rugged (sp?).

Our professor kind of shot the idea down...were we that far off? I've been thinking about it ever since last week and I'm still not sure. He didn't really have much else to offer either. Thoughts?

Monday, September 11, 2006

Best media gift ever

This is way better than my previous favorite (the american idol umbrella). How did they know I was an excessive drinker?

It also came with a backpack and flashlight. They somehow knew that I also loved hiking but hated the dark. Hey, one out of three.

Brilliant but Cancelled

This Fall, You Can Vote for Your Favorite Flops, New York Times

This seems a little morbid...

Sunday, September 10, 2006


So excited that I joined a running club this past week! It meets on Wednesday evening and we have an additional schedule to follow for the rest of the week. My friend and I are doing it together - so I'm happy to have someone else to run with. We also decided that halfway through the program we're going to treat ourselves to this really cool bar in town to show off our new hot bods. haha

Work was crazy this past week. We had a bid to get out on Friday before I had to do some serious hussling (lol - that sounds bad). But the bid got there in time. Actually half an hour early! Fingers crossed that we win.

I'm feeling that Monday is going to be pretty insane as well. I've got to put together a buy in Houston - exciting! After doing all the research about that city, I seriously want to visit. Apparently there are over 11,000 restaurants in Houston. That's amazing - you could eat out at a different restaurant every night for 30 years! How I wish to live in a big city again :)

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Seminoles v. Miami 13 - 10

All I can say is "Thank God."

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Sunday, September 03, 2006

It's that time again

FSU football season opens Monday and thus begins another season of entirely too much binge drinking, pizza, burgers, trash-talking, standing for hours, emotional rollercoasters, garnet and gold hair ribbons and beads, grandmas sneaking booze into games, "kegs and eggs," 20-something drunk guys yelling "F**k Miami!" and mimosas at 8am for the noon games.

This is also the second year of no Rix. However, the "criminoles" have been in top shape without him. FSU football players, though surrounded by the best of the best; gorgeous women (Playboy ranked our Publix as one of the country's best places to meet someone), amazing facilities, fans (unless you were Rix in his last 2 years), and all the tricked-out cars you can imagine, somehow manage to continuously find themselves in trouble with the law.

When Rix was QB, he once received 2 speeding tickets in 1 day - on the same street! And last year Wyatt Sexton, in a lyme disease frenzy, proclaimed himself the first QB God to grace FSU's field (and streets - completely naked). I actually saw him at a party one night where he yelled at me and my friend to come take a shot. We said 'no thanks' and he yelled out that we were being laaaa-me. Lame, indeed. Last year, FSU also lost AJ Nickolson (sp?) who was suspended on rape allegations. What a sweetheart. Oh yeah, and Jeff Rouse and Nickolson robbed another player, Lorenzo Booker (gotta love teammates).
Couldn't not include this incredible pic of Rouse.

I'm sure this year won't be any different than past years. Drew Weatherford is QB and hasn't had any controversy after starting last year. But he is hot, so there will likely be some sort of sexual foul play at some point. Bobby Bowden is in for another season as coach and hopefully he won't keel over. Maybe Jeff Bowden will be fired. Maybe not. Maybe students will decide that it's acceptable to sit down during the games. Ha ha. It's more fun to be drunk and standing than to sit...

Friday, September 01, 2006

Someone let the cat out of the...well, you know

This is a mascot we created for a PR client. He came to life today :)