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DDB's Digital Exec on Creating for Instagram and Lovin' It

DDB discusses digital strategies for some big brands (State Farm and McDonald’s!) DDB and other Omnicom teams will be marketing via Instagram after signing a $40 million deal. Wow!


DDB’s Azher Ahmed is a part of the creative team working for brands like State Farm Insurance (consumers might recall the “discount doublecheck”) and he is at SXSW talking with clients about digital strategies.

Also, DDB parent company Omnicom Group, which is merging with Publicis Groupe, just signed a deal worth $40 million to market brands on Instagram. Who better than Ahmed to discuss the potential for such emerging marketing platforms? He helps run McDonald’s Instagram account, and is experimenting with different ways to engage users there.

It’s all about “participatory content,” he said. One example he shared was when a user posted pictures of model cars built out of McDonald’s food containers.

“The social media team picked that up and turned it into an Instagram video where it was a stop-motion car that was moving,” Ahmed said. “That demonstrates a couple of things. A: That we’re paying attention to what’s happening out there and people are obviously passionate about our products. B: We’re willing to take it and remix it, which is very much a part of Internet culture. And C: We’re putting it out there in a form that it wasn’t originally video, but now it is, and it’s actually traveling much farther than some of our other content that we might have felt was a little more brandy.

“So I love it.”

Below, Ahmed discusses via Instagram what criteria he uses to determine whether a platform is worth pursuing as a marketer, and what type of content plays well in those new space

Read more from the source: AdWeek

Wunderman Folds Designkitchen into Blast Radius

Some great news from one of our clients, Designkitchen. We’re excited to see what talent comes from this combo!


WPP’s Wunderman is taking its Chicago-based digital shop Designkitchen and folding it into digital agency Blast Radius.

Both Blast Radius and Designkitchen are under the Wunderman umbrella, a group within Y&R that WPP has built up primarily through acquisition over the years. Designkitchen, has a 100-hundred employee office in Chicago; it will now be called Blast Radius, giving that name a presence in Chicago. Designkitchen also has a San Francisco outpost with fewer than 20 employees, and that location will change its name to Blast Radius eventually, though the agency declined to detail when.

Sam Landers, CEO of Blast Radius “Individually, each agency has a strong reputation for delivering strategic, creative solutions for clients through brand and technology innovation,” said Sam Landers, former head of Designkitchen and now global CEO of Blast Radius. “Over time, we’ve worked on several joint clients and seen the distinct advantages of working together. Today, our clients benefit from having one of the most talented groups assembled at their fingertips.”

As head of Blast Radius, Mr. Landers is replacing Gurval Caer, who last March was named vice chairman, chief innovation and marketing officer of Wunderman. Mr. Landers was also named president of Wunderman’s brand experience division, which was created to oversee digital properties of the network globally. Blast Radius North America is overseen by managing director Robin Forbes. Designkitchen in 2012 had revenue of $23 million, according to Ad Age’s DataCenter. Blast Radius had U.S. revenue of $58 million and non-U.S. revenue of $15 million.

Clients at the combined agency now include Nike, Novartis, Starbucks, Nivea, Land Rover, HP and Motorola. WPP bought Blast Radius in October 2007, aligning Blast Radius with WPP’s Wunderman. Blast Radius, formed in 1996, has five offices in North America (Portland, Toronto, Vancouver, New York, Seattle) along with five overseas (Paris, Amsterdam, London, Shanghai and Hamburg, Germany) . Designkitchen, founded by Mr. Landers, was acquired by Wunderman in July 2008.

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