November 29, 2021

New Ad Organization to Promote Cross-Cultural Marketing

Five big names on Madison Avenue are joining forces to start an organization devoted to promoting what is known as cross-cultural marketing: pitches directed at a general market whose demographic makeup is becoming much more diverse.

The organization, called the Cross Cultural Marketing and Communications Association, is being started by the American Association of Advertising Agencies; Draftfcb, part of the Interpublic Group of Companies; PepsiCo; and two divisions of WPP, Ogilvy Mather Worldwide and the Millward Brown research company.

The new association plans to introduce itself at the Total Market Industry Conference, which is set for Sept. 9 and 10 at the Ogilvy Mather headquarters on the West Side of Manhattan. Speakers are to discuss subjects like demographic trends, how to engage new kinds of consumers, technological trends and how to attract and keep talented employees.

Cross-cultural marketing tries to reach diverse consumer groups, addressing similarities rather than differences. An example would be a recent commercial for Cheerios cereal, sold by General Mills, which featured an interracial family. That approach diverges from multicultural marketing, which is directed at specific demographic groups like Hispanics or African-Americans.

“The industry says you have to be in the general market box or in the multicultural marketing box,” said Jeffrey L. Bowman, the founder of the new organization. “Cross-cultural is inclusive of both boxes.”

Mr. Bowman’s day job is as the cross-cultural practice lead at Ogilvy Mather, where he is also a managing director and senior partner. He has long advocated an approach that recognizes a “total market” rather than more narrowly focused marketing messages; before speaking to a reporter, he said this week, he had attended “a total market summit with Kimberly-Clark.”

The new association is “not a commercial for Ogilvy” or its cross-cultural practice, Mr. Bowman said. “We should think of the total market as a new revenue vertical for the industry.”

A member of the advisory board of the new association, Vita Harris, executive vice president and chief global strategy officer at Draftfcb, said one of its goals was “to start to ignite a community of people taking the total market seriously.”

A total market approach requires agencies and advertisers to have their “fingers on the pulse of consumers,” she added, and “a lot of that comes out of hiring people who reflect the consumer base” — that is, having a work force that is more diverse.

Ms. Harris and Mr. Bowman acknowledged that the new association joined a lengthy list of industry associations and organizations.

“We want to complement the other associations out there” rather than compete with them for attention and resources, Mr. Bowman said, adding: “If we’re successful, other organizations will adopt the total market approach. If we go away, great, it would mean we’ll have been successful.”

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Accounts and People of Note in the Ad Industry

American Advertising Federation, Washington, elected its board for 2013-14. Wendy Clark, senior vice president of the Global Sparkling Brand Center at the Coca-Cola Cola, becomes the new chairwoman, succeeding the immediate past chairman, John Osborn, president and chief executive at BBDO New York. Rich Stoddart, president for North America at Leo Burnett, becomes the new vice chairman.

Max Arlestig and Max Gebhardt, an interactive creative team, joined the Amsterdam office of Wieden Kennedy after working together at R/GA, New York, part of the Interpublic Group of Companies, and freelancing in London and Sydney.

Kelly Williams Brown joined Leopold Ketel, Portland, Ore., as a copywriter. She has been a reporter and editor and most recently wrote a book, “Adulting: How to Become a Grown-Up in 468 Easy(ish) Steps.”

Auro Trini Castelli and Lauren Glazer joined the New York office of Gyro in new posts. Mr. Trini Castelli becomes head of strategy; he had been senior vice president and global strategy director at the New York office of DraftFCB, part of the Interpublic Group of Companies. Ms. Glazer becomes client services director; she had been senior vice president and account director at BBDO New York, part of the BBDO North America unit of BBDO Worldwide, owned by the Omnicom Group.

Ericsson, Stockholm, is acquiring Red Bee Media, London, a media services company, from a group controlled by Macquarie Advanced Investment Partners. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Katrina Greenwood joined the Chicago office of Havas Worldwide in a new post, strategy director for the retail and direct marketing aspects of the Citibank account. She had been senior creative strategist for brand strategy at Digitas, part of the Publicis Groupe. Havas Worldwide is part of the Havas Creative unit of Havas.

Amanda Hines joined Forge Worldwide, Boston, as an account supervisor. She had been a senior account executive at Roundarch Isobar, Boston, part of the Dentsu Aegis Network division of Dentsu.

IgnitionOne, New York, has completed a buyout, led by management, from its parent, Dentsu. Financial terms were not disclosed. In addition to senior managers, the buyout was financed by employees and ABS Capital Partners. IgnitionOne had been owned by Dentsu since 2010.

Peter Krasniqi joined Tapad, New York, in a new post, vice president and head of performance advertising. He had been iAd sales manager at Apple, based in New York.

Latitude, Minneapolis, hired three executives. They are Van Horgen, creative director and copywriter; Michael Murray, account director; and Jason Strong, executive creative director and designer.

Gayle Malone joined the Magnetic Collective, New York, in a new post, partner. She had been associate director for account planning at Razorfish, part of the Publicis Groupe.

MediaCom Sport, part of the MediaCom division of GroupM, a unit of WPP, opened its first office in Asia, in Singapore, to be led by Jin Wei Toh, who had been Singapore managing director at the Parallel Media Group Asia.

Palace Resorts, Doral, Fla., chose ISM, Boston, as its advertising agency of record in North America. Billings were not disclosed. The assignment had previously been handled by the Newlink Group, Miami, which will continue to work with Palace Resorts, handling public relations.

Pascal Racheneur joined LSN Mobile, Atlanta, in a new post, senior vice president for products. He had been vice president for interactive media at AccuWeather.

Michael Racic joined the New York office of Rocket Fuel in a new post, vice president for category development. He had most recently been executive vice president and managing partner at Universal McCann, New York, part of the Mediabrands division of the Interpublic Group of Companies.

Relevant24 — which describes itself as an amalgam of publisher, advertising agency and multimedia content production company — was opened in Boston by Marc Gallucci, who is chief executive, and Lane Murphy, who is president.

Seth Rogin joined Mashable, New York, in a new post, chief revenue officer. He had been a vice president for advertising at The New York Times.

SKG Advertising, Las Vegas, expanded further into Asia by forming a unit focused on the region. The unit, SKG Asia Pacific, is based in Hong Kong and is teaming with the Tank, a Hong Kong agency that has worked for marketers like the Hong Kong Jockey Club.

Elaine Wong joined McGarryBowen, New York, as director for corporate communications. She had been director for corporate communications at ID Media, New York, part of the Mediabrands division of the Interpublic Group of Companies. McGarryBowen is part of the Dentsu Network division of Dentsu.

Po Yi joined the New York office of Venable as a partner in an expansion of the law firm’s advertising and marketing group. She had been vice president and chief advertising counsel at American Express, New York, serving as chief counsel to the chief marketing officer and global advertising and brand management group.

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G.M. and Mountain Dew Pull Ads After Criticism for Racial Insensitivity

The General Motors ad was a promotion for the Chevrolet Trax, a small sport utility vehicle that is sold in countries including Canada, where the ad made its debut on television on March 4. The ad is set in the 1930s and features a modern remix of a song from that era that included references to Chinese people using phrases like “ching ching, chop-suey.”

Advertising Standards Canada questioned General Motors about the ad, prompting the company to change the ad by removing the lyrics from the song while keeping the melody.

Even so, as word of the offensive lyrics spread within the company, G.M. decided to withdraw the ad altogether from Canadian television and on Web sites in Europe, where the vehicle is also sold. The vehicle is not sold or advertised in the United States.

In a statement issued on Wednesday, G.M. apologized for the ad and said, “We are conducting a full review of our advertising approval process to ensure this does not happen again in the future.”

The ad was created by Commonwealth, Chevrolet’s global advertising agency since 2012 and a part of the McCann Worldgroup of the Interpublic Group of Companies.

The second ad withdrawn on Wednesday promoted Mountain Dew, part of the PepsiCo Americas Beverages division of PepsiCo. The ad featured a battered waitress, bandaged and on crutches, trying to identify the person who had hurt her when she ran out of Mountain Dew; the lineup includes African-American men with names like LBoy, Tiny and Beyonte — and a goat.

The waitress, who is white, is stricken with fear as she looks at the men and the goat. A voice-over for the animal says in a menacing tone: “It’s me. You should’ve gave me some more.”

“I don’t think I can do this,” the woman says, visibly frightened. Toward the end, the goat threatens her to “keep your mouth shut.” The woman begins to yell repeatedly, “I can’t do this,” followed by a sequence of shrill “noes” as she hops out of the room. The officer then takes a sip of the beverage.

The ad was created by Tyler Okonma, known as Tyler, the Creator, a hip-hop producer and rap artist. In a statement released Wednesday morning, Mountain Dew apologized for the ad and said it had been removed “from all Mountain Dew channels and Tyler is removing it from his channels as well.” News of the company’s decision was first reported by Adweek.

Mountain Dew has also come under pressure because of its relationship with another rapper, Lil’ Wayne. The company has an endorsement deal with Wayne, who has been criticized over vulgar lyrics that refer to Emmett Till, the African-American teenager whose 1955 murder helped foment the civil rights movement.

On Wednesday, the rapper issued an apology to Mr. Till’s family, adding, “I will not use or reference Emmett Till or the Till family in my music, especially in an inappropriate manner.”

Mountain Dew is the latest brand to deal with controversial hip-hop lyrics. In April, Reebok dropped the rapper Rick Ross after he performed lyrics on the Rocko song “U.O.E.N.O” that referred to drugging a woman and having sex with her.

In March, another auto company, Ford Motor, apologized for an online advertisement in India that featured three bound and gagged women in the rear of a vehicle driven by an actor in the role of Silvio Berlusconi.

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Webdenda : Webdenda

And1, Aliso Viejo, Calif., the basketball footwear and apparel company, chose Catch New York as agency of record. Billings were not disclosed. The assignment had previously been handled by Frank Creative, Portland, Ore.

David Bonner joined the St. Louis office of Momentum Worldwide as senior vice president and executive creative director. He succeeds Jeff Stevens, who left in April, the agency said. Mr. Bonner had been senior vice president and executive creative director at St. John Partners, Jacksonville, Fla. Momentum Worldwide is part of the McCann Worldgroup division of the Interpublic Group of Companies.

Jonathan Cohen joined Behan Communications, Albany, in a new post, chief operating officer. He had been running his own consultancy, Cohen Strategic.

Tim Collison joined the ZenithOptimedia Group, London, part of the Publicis Groupe, in a new post, global communications director. He had most recently been director for worldwide communications at Initiative, part of the Mediabrands division of the Interpublic Group of Companies.

Lori Conkling joined NBCUniversal, New York, part of Comcast, as executive vice president for strategy and business development in a newly formed part of the company that is focused on areas like innovation and digital strategy and is led by Lauren Zalaznick. Ms. Conkling had been executive vice president for distribution at AE Networks, which is jointly owned by the Walt Disney Company and the Hearst Corporation.

Doremus New York, part of the Doremus division of the Omnicom Group, hired three employees. They are Cori Lundy, account supervisor; Melissa Medeiros, marketing analyst, a new post; and Rose Weng, management supervisor, also a new post.

Robyn Freye joined Digitaria, San Diego, part of the JWT division of WPP, in a new post, vice president for marketing. She had been director for business development at Pereira O’Dell, San Francisco, part of Grupo ABC.

Bob Girolamo joined ePrize, Pleasant Ridge, Mich., in a new post, managing director for its mobile customer relationship management division, overseeing a team based in the company’s Chicago office. He had been a general manager at

Allison Gollust joined the New York office of Turner Broadcasting System, part of Time Warner, as senior vice president for communications at CNN Worldwide, overseeing publicity and public relations teams in Atlanta, Los Angeles, New York and Washington. The hiring of Ms. Gollust, who had most recently been communications director for Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo of New York, reunites her with Jeff Zucker, president at CNN Worldwide, with whom she worked when he was at “Today,” NBC and NBCUniversal.

Hearst Ventures, New York, made a minority equity investment — estimated at $30 million for a 20 percent stake — in Science Inc., Santa Monica, Calif., which creates digital businesses and helps them to grow. Recent initiatives by Science Inc. included Dollar Shave Club. Hearst Ventures is part of the Hearst Entertainment and Syndication unit of the Hearst Corporation.

Lionsgate, Santa Monica, Calif., consolidated its media planning and buying assignment for its Lionsgate and Summit Entertainment studios, with spending estimated at $250 million, at the Mindshare division of GroupM, which is owned by WPP. Mindshare has handled the media duties for Summit before Summit was acquired by Lionsgate; the media duties for Lionsgate had been handled by Initiative, part of the Mediabrands division of the Interpublic Group of Companies. A review for the consolidated assignment involved three media agencies: Initiative, Mindshare and Horizon Media.

Sarah Mark and Alex Van Wagner joined Hero Marketing, San Francisco, in new posts. Ms. Mark becomes client strategy director; she had most recently been a consultant. Mr. Van Wagner becomes senior client strategy manager; he had been a client manager at Rauxa.

MarketSense, Burr Ridge, Ill., and its sibling company, MarketEffect, have been combined to form the Mx Group.

Jordi Martinez joined the Martin Agency, Richmond, Va., part of the Interpublic Group of Companies, as a creative director. He had been the head of the Dam Armada unit of the Amsterdam office of Wieden Kennedy.

Tim Mayer joined TruEffect, Westminster, Colo., in a new post, chief marketing officer. He had been vice president for marketing at ShopAtHome.

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Advertising: From Zappos, an Unadorned Approach

The campaign was created by Mullen, the company’s agency of record and part of the Interpublic Group of Companies, and is intended to highlight the company’s apparel. “Zappos has a quirky culture,” said Tim Vaccarino, group creative director at Mullen. “Doing something typical is not really them.”

The campaign departs from Mullen’s last work with Zappos, which featured (clothed) felt puppets whose voices were provided by real customer service calls and was made up primarily of television ads. The new campaign will incorporate a heavy dose of digital ads, videos and QR (for quick response) codes, as well as print ads in magazines. And if the idea of using naked people who need to be clothed to sell clothing seems too literal, that is exactly what the marketing minds at Zappos and Mullen say they had in mind.

“Sometimes advertisers try to do something very creative and the messaging gets lost,” said Michelle Thomas, the senior brand marketing manager at Zappos. The campaign also highlights Zappos’s focus on clothing as a “growth engine for the future,” Ms. Thomas said. “Zappos has a belief that really, we can sell anything.”

The Kantar Media unit of WPP says Zappos spent $19.7 million on advertising in 2010 and $4.8 million in the first quarter of 2011.

The hundreds of brands on the Zappos Web site are as varied as Stuart Weitzman and Spanx, and the company has a separate Web site, Zappos Couture, that sells higher end items from designers like Alexander McQueen and Stella McCartney. The company also features Web pages where in-house stylists put together outfits and customers can determine their style personality (Are you a Mom-on-the-Go, a Casualista or Boho?).


The new ads were shot outdoors in Manhattan locations like Park Avenue and the West Village and feature naked women, with censor bars strategically placed, doing outdoor activities like jogging or riding a Vespa scooter. A tagline on one ad reads “To help you break a sweat without breaking the law.”

Instead of tall willowy models, the ads feature “the shapes and curves of many, many people,” Mr. Vaccarino said. Tiffany Payne, who is five feet tall, was a model featured riding a scooter in downtown Manhattan.

“Sometimes when I see ads and the girls are 6 feet 2 and skinny, it sort of deters me from buying the product because I don’t think it would fit me right,” Ms. Payne said. During the shoot, the models wore pasties and thongs or tiny bikinis, which were edited out later.

Zappos is hoping consumers will keep looking at the campaign’s print ads long enough to notice that they will be enhanced with quick response codes. When scanned by a smartphone, the codes will take the phone user to a mobile site featuring fictional videos of what happens to the naked women in the ads. Users can also select outfits for the model to wear and can enter the Zappos mobile site to buy the items on the smartphone.

Ads will begin running in the August issues of magazines like Lucky, InStyle, Cosmopolitan, and Harper’s Bazaar. The target audience is what Zappos calls “happy hunters,” or women who are fashion conscious and heavy consumers of online media.

Women who may feel slighted by the lack of a naked man in the campaign will have to wait until the end of July, when Zappos will take over the home page of a major search engine portal with an interactive ad introducing a male character, Arthur. In the ad, Arthur asks the user to help him dress while he makes his way to the Zappos Web site.

“He should be captivating in an ‘I hope you’ve had your coffee already’ kind of way,” said Kay Pancheri, an account director at Mullen.


Using nudity and sex to sell products can be a tricky proposition for brands. Ads for Calvin Klein featuring a ménage à trois of young models wearing nothing but Calvin Klein jeans drew criticism for being too sexual. Abercrombie Fitch, the retailer of clothing for teenagers, has come under fire for using overtly sexual images in its catalogs and advertisements.

In 2003, the company withdrew a holiday catalog, AF Quarterly, after protests from parent groups and others that the images encouraged sexual behavior among teenagers.

Another retailer, American Apparel, has been criticized for nudity in ads. In 2008, the company ran ads online that featured topless women among other overtly sexual images.

“The American public, I think, is mature enough to be able to handle these types of images,” said Ryan Holiday, the director of online marketing at American Apparel. Brands should consider their motives for using nudity and sexuality in ads, Mr. Holiday said.

“Are they doing it because they want to get attention from blogs and Web sites that will write about it?” he asked. “Or are they doing it because it’s the ad campaign that speaks most truly to who they are and what they want to sell?”

After being shown the new ads, some Zappos brands declined to participate in the campaign for fear that it was “too risqué for them,” Ms. Thompson said. One brand that signed up was Lolë, a manufacturer of women’s active wear. Nathalie Binda, the marketing vice president for Lolë, described the campaign as “gutsy” and “very Zapposesque.”

Lolë has been selling clothing on the Zappos Web site for four years and will feature items like tank tops and pants in the new campaign. As for the nudity? “If there was one brand out there that can do it, it’s them,” Ms. Binda said.

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Advertising: In Bid for Young Viewers, Baseball Ads Swap Action for Funny Videos

Take me out with, like, all my Facebook friends

Buy me some brewskis, for sure, and, like, maybe some Crackerjack?

I don’t care if, like, I never get back, if I can bring my iPad, iPhone and, um, BlackBerry with me.

O.K., O.K., so Major League Baseball, in its newest effort to reach out to younger potential fans, will not be rewriting the lyrics to its anthem. Instead, the league is introducing, beginning with the start of the 2011 season on Thursday, an ambitious campaign aimed at the demographic aged 18 to 34.

The campaign is the first for Major League Baseball from its new creative agency, Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos in Boston, part of the Interpublic Group of Companies. Not only are the tone and approach different from previous campaigns, which took more traditional tacks, but the ads will have a far larger presence in social media that younger Americans adore, like Facebook and Twitter.


One way the campaign tries to woo younger fans is by replacing the previous theme, “Beyond baseball,” with the phrase “MLB Always epic”; there will also be a microsite called

There is clearly a double use of the word “epic,” said Tim Brosnan, executive vice president for business at Major League Baseball in New York, reflecting popular slang phrases like “Dude, this is epic,” as well as the idea that “there are stories that contribute to the epic nature of baseball and over the course of a season baseball has an epic sweep, if you will.”

In another attempt to appeal to a more youthful audience, the campaign is changing the look of commercials and video clips. Formerly, spots celebrated the charms of baseball as a sport by offering glimpses of in-game action. The new commercials, on TV and online, offer humorous vignettes of popular players. In one spot, viewers are invited to visit the microsite for “a journey inside” the bushy beard of the reliever Brian Wilson of the San Francisco Giants.

In a second commercial, the pitcher Felix Hernandez of the Seattle Mariners, who won the Cy Young Award last year, is shown winning all the stuffed animals at the Milk Jug Toss booth at a carnival. The carny inside the booth, disgusted, pulls the plug — literally — on the pitcher.

In a third spot, Ubaldo Jiménez, a pitcher for the Colorado Rockies, browses the racks of miniature souvenir license plates at a gift shop but — surprise! — cannot find one that reads “Ubaldo.” A teammate frets, “The bus is waiting,” but Mr. Jiménez asks, “Do you have any more in the back?”

Major League Baseball sponsors and partners like Pepsi-Cola and Fox Broadcasting have long centered campaigns on star players. So, too, have leagues for other sports like basketball and football; for example, a fanciful new “time travel” campaign for the National Basketball Association features players like Steve Nash.

But M.L.B. has shied from that because far more players have local or regional profiles than national stature.

“I’ve always been a proponent of emphasizing the personalities of the athletes,” said Bob Dorfman, executive creative director at Baker Street Advertising in San Francisco, who tracks the value of players as endorsers.

“There aren’t as many big, national names in baseball because you tend to root for your local team,” Mr. Dorfman said, “but it makes sense to have fun with players, try to make them more attractive, so maybe you’ll get out to a game you wouldn’t otherwise see.”

As for seeking younger fans to fill seats at ball parks, Mr. Dorfman said: “That’s a problem baseball has had, the aging of its market, the idea that the game is too slow for the social media generation. It’s worth trying to get that teenage and 20-something audience to think that baseball is cool.”

Mr. Brosnan said that “the commitment we ask our fans to make is pretty intense,” and millions say yes each season.

“We want to be a part of the discussion at the digital water cooler, day in and day out, with a younger demo than we’ve targeted in our advertising before,” Mr. Brosnan said. “And the nature of this campaign is to help them spread the word.”

Hill, Holliday landed the M.L.B. account last fall after the league parted ways with its previous creative agency, McCann Erickson Worldwide in New York, part of the McCann Worldgroup unit of Interpublic.

“When we pitched the business, the approach we took was that baseball has all the qualities for the modern entertainment era,” said Karen Kaplan, president at Hill, Holliday, because like the Harry Potter books and movies, “Lost” and “Mad Men,” baseball has “long-running story arcs, legends, back stories, rivalries and sprawling casts of characters, heroic characters you should be interested in, even if they don’t play for your team.”

“Some things people might consider liabilities are actually assets,” she said.

The focus on players “drives engagement,” Ms. Kaplan said, by capitalizing on them as “content engines,” providing grist for the social media mill with comments and videos to be shared through social networks.

That is also the idea behind the MLB Fan Cave, developed by Hill, Holliday; Endemol USA; and Major League Baseball. Mike O’Hara, 37, and Ryan Wagner, 25, will watch the 2011 baseball season unfold from the old Tower Records store at East Fourth Street and Broadway in Manhattan, sharing their thoughts through Twitter (@MLBFanCave), a blog on, Facebook, video clips and appearances on the MLB Network cable channel.

The campaign will also appear on the MLB Network, Fox, ESPN and TBS, along with related Web sites.


The start of the new season is bringing other baseball-related campaigns that speak with hipper voices.

Old Style beer, sold by the Pabst Brewing Company, is introducing a campaign by Scott Victor in Chicago that plays up the brand’s sponsorship of the Chicago Cubs and its bottles designed to resemble bats.

The ads carry cheeky headlines like “Crack a bat,” “Tossed back by Cubs fans for 61 years” and, referring to Wrigley Field, “We were there when the ivy wall was more wall than ivy.”

And StubHub, the online ticket reseller, is bringing out a campaign by Duncan/Channon in San Francisco that includes its first national TV commercials.

In one spot, as an organ plays “Take Me Out to the Ball Game,” young men romp through a fantasy field of dreams; after a team mascot helps one catch a fly, he lands on grass carpeted with hot dogs.

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