Shelf Life with Louise Marsland: selling SA wine in the States

Louise Marsland’s (@Louise_Marsland) pick of new product, packaging and design launches.

Marketing SA wines in the US is not a picnic, Top Shop provides a window on new fashions, another ‘BlackBerry’ launch, and we find out which is the most desirable tablet is in South Africa…

Creativity isn’t an advertising ghetto

by Herman Manson (@marklives) It all started well before the Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival became the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. It was probably inevitable – advertising has spent the past two decades evolving at such a rapid pace that what we thought of as ‘ads’ then certainly won’t hold ground today. The ad industry solved it by replacing the word ‘advertising’ with the word ‘creativity.’

With ads no longer du jour industry award shows are positioning themselves as being about ‘creativity’ that’s lead by ‘creatives’ producing great ‘creative thinking’ and big ideas. Marketing, advertising and creativity have been nicely bundled together and not only changed our lingo but also excluded a lot of stakeholders in the process.

Yet communication today is about a lot more than a Creative Director’s definition of creativity. It’s very much about speed, authenticity, information, accessibility and a host of other factors.

Neil Parker,writing in Fast Company, notes that it’s “a truism that making a brand succeed today requires a bazaar-like variety of skills, that go way beyond strategizing, copywriting and art directing. You need product development, coding, social, customer service design, internal culture transformation and a raft of other crafts… Which means the industry has a problem in its structure, not just its name.”

Rebuilding business trust in ad land

Arctic Circle, the maverick Cape Town agency run by Reghard Goussard, positions itself as a navigator in the changing economic and social contract brands are facing, promising to find a path out of the communication morass many brands and their agencies face today.

This under the radar agency famously lost 19 of its 20 retainers several years ago, only to rise again and reinvent itself, transforming from a design to an advertising and then a brand agency. Today it’s a business solution focussed agency with creative and production as value adds, says Goussard.

Goussard says even within the industry he is positioned as a business man rather than an ad guy, focussing on the business procedures of building a brand, and employing multi-skilled individuals with backgrounds in business rather than traditional agency people. Goussard says the role of his agency has evolved to a point where it is getting paid to source and translate market intelligence rather than just create ads.

The Creative Circle needs to manage relevance, says Chris Gotz

Chris Gotz, Executive Creative Director at Ogilvy Cape Town, recently took up the reins as chair of the Creative Circle, a body promoting creativity in the South African advertising industry.

140 BBDO finds new relevance, success

One year on and 140 BBDO, the agency formerly known as Net#work BBDO Cape Town, has found that its identity change and internal organisational behaviour shift is paying dividends. Of the three pitches it undertook in 2011, it won the two in which it was the incumbent and then scored one of the biggest accounts in Cape Town when it bagged the third in Metropolitan.

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