Sunday, January 31, 2010

The Future is Bright - The Art of Marketing Conference Toronto

Mark your calendars for Tuesday March 2nd, 2010 for The Art of Marketing Conference at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. This is will be one of the events that will be both informative and inspiring.

This exciting one day conference will feature six internationally renowned bestselling authors and leaders who will share an exciting blend of cutting edge thinking and real world experience on today's most critical marketing issues.
No question the biggest topic on every marketing communication practitioners mind is how to get a clearer understanding of how the marketing world has changed, what role communication now plays in the buying decision and the impact on the business bottom line and ultimately how the consumer views, interacts and positions a brand in a very crowded and over saturated marketplace. Cutting through the clutter has always been critical, but now consumers have a bigger say in the success and more often the failure of a strategy.

The Art of Marketing event has a stellar group of speakers on tap. Best selling authors and industry influencers include Seth Godin on Leadership & Creativity, Dan Heath on Strategy & Communications, Mitch Joel on Digital Marketing & Social Media, Max Lenderman on Branding & Experiential Marketing, James Othmer on Advertising & Branding and the brilliant career and strategist Sally Hogshead on Persuasion & Influence. 

The day will kick-off with Mitch Joel the President of Twist Image, one of Canada’s best Digital Marketing and Communications agency. When Google wanted to explain online marketing to the top brands in the world, they brought Mitch Joel to the Googleplex. Marketing Magazine dubbed him the "Rock Star of Digital Marketing" and called him, "one of North America's leading digital visionaries."

He is has been named one of the most influential authorities on Blog Marketing in the world. He is also a Blogger, Podcaster, passionate entrepreneur and speaker who connects with people worldwide by sharing his marketing insights on digital marketing and personal branding.

Currently Mitch has 14,320 followers on Twitter where he shares endless amounts of information. Mitch is without a doubt one of Canada's most influential contributors in Social Media.

Seth Godin was called by Business Week the "World’s Foremost Marketing Guru" and “Ultimate Entrepreneur for the Information Age,” Seth is a best-selling author, entrepreneur and agent of change and draws upon his best-selling books and years of being a marketing pioneer to bring audiences of all kinds to their feet.

He will address the topic of "Leadership and Creativity", he focuses on the creative thinking necessary for a business to create a “purple cow”—an offering that stands out from the crowd and causes customers to take notice. Using real-world examples from extremely successful companies, his lectures reveal the benefits of using creative, remarkable thinking to transform business ideas and practices. In his book "Purple Cow" Seth explored how ideas spread, why the stories companies tell matter, why treating customers with respect pays off and how these and other business decisions determine whether your business becomes invisible or remarkable. Today Seth pursues his work as a change agent full time.

Sally Hogshead has it. Her message is very new and constantly timely. Business has changed, the world has changed, and Sally shows audiences how to stay ahead. She is about release on February 9th her newest book "Fascinate: Your 7 Triggers to Persuasion and Captivation". She is also the author of "Radical Careering - 100 Truths to Jumpstart Your Job, Career and Your Life." I have personally found great inspiration and assistance in my teaching my "career" planning classes in Sally through her blog and following her on Facebook and Twitter.

Her story is very unique, In her second year in advertising, Sally won more awards than any other copywriter in the U.S., and was called “the most successful junior copywriter of all time.” At age 27 she founded the West Coast office of Crispin Porter + Bogusky in the dual role of creative director/managing director. Her work has collected hundreds of honors, and been invited into showcases ranging from “Best Ads on TV” to The Smithsonian Museum of American History. In addition she was part of the team that won the $100,000 Grand Kelly prize for MINI Cooper.

Sally will deliver her unique style that has made her a fascinating speaker that electrifies audiences. Nine seconds. That’s the length of the average attention span today. Just nine seconds! People become distracted by the next product, the next ad, the next option. How can you possibly hold your customers’ interest long enough shape their opinion? She will share her thoughts and give answers on how can you break through the clutter to nail your next sales call, or motivate your internal team? For that matter, how can you influence any decisions?

James Othmer is the author of Adland: Searching for the Meaning of Life on a Branded Planet, and The Futurist  but has pent his professional career at the intersection of art and commerce, old and new media. As a creative director at Young & Rubicam Advertising in New York, this 20-year agency veteran created brand narratives and award-winning commercials for some of the world’s most powerful corporations, including Citi, AT&T, Dannon and Colgate. This experience has provided him with the opportunity to travel the world and meet some of the world’s most interesting and innovative people, from artists and musicians to four-star generals, web designers, CEOs of Fortune 500 Companies and yes, even comedian Carrot Top. His blog "AdLand" has been noted as "Picks up where 'Mad Men' leaves off" by Fortune magazine

His acclaimed first novel The Futurist. The Washington Post wrote, “If Othmer is spilling this many insider secrets, The Powers That Be must want him to – or he’s a dead man. The Futurist was published as a short story in The Virginia Quarterly Review and was a finalist for the National Magazine Award in Fiction.” His latest, the non-fiction title Adland: Searching for the Meaning of Life on a Branded Planet, takes a clear-eyed look at the past present and future of branding. Adland was named a Best Business Book of 2009 by Fast Company Magazine and was on the list of Hudson Booksellers "Best Book of the Year".

Max Lenderman in addition to be an outstanding writer and author, most notably "Brand New World: How Pauoers, Pirates and Oligarchs are Reshaping Business" Max is serves as Executive Creative Director at GMR Marketing. GMR is the largest experiential marketing company in North America, where his work has won numerous industry recognitions, the latest including the 2009 Effie Award and the 2007, 2008 and 2009 Ex Awards. He previously founded and ran Gearwerx Experiential Marketing, Canada’s premiere experiential marketing agency, with offices in Montreal and Toronto. In addition, Lenderman is a founding board member of the International Experiential Marketing Association (IXMA)

Lenderman’s breakthrough publication, Experience the Message: How Experiential Marketing is Changing the Brand World, was a Business Book of the Year Finalist in 2006. It was his latest book, Brand New World that caught my eye this past summer and I share as a visionary "must read" for my students in terms groundbreaking marketing strategies and the new business models.
He has been interviewed by dozens of news agencies on the branding, communication and strategic subjects, including The National Post, The Montreal Gazette, The Globe and Mail, Report on BusinessTV, CTV, NOW Maagzine, The Hour, Marketing Magazine, Profit Magazine, CBC Radio: The Sunday Edition, and is a former columnist for Strategy Magazine.

Wrapping up the day is Dan Heath is the co-author, along with his brother Chip, of the book Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die. Made to Stick was a Business Week and New York Times bestseller, and it has been translated into 23 languages. Amazon readers voted it one of the top 100 books of 2007, and Amazon editors named it the #2 business book of the year.

Dan co-authors a monthly column for Fast Company magazine and serves as a Consultant to the Policy Programs at the Aspen Institute. He has taught and consulted on the topic of "making ideas stick" with organizations such as Microsoft, Macy's, Nestle, and the American Heart Association. Prior to joining the Aspen Institute, Dan conducted research and wrote case studies for Harvard Business School, and more recently, he worked and taught in the executive education division of Duke University. Dan is also the co-founder of a start-up textbook publishing company in Austin, TX, called Thinkwell —Thinkwell will celebrate its 10th anniversary this fall.

The good people at The Art Of Marketing wanted to make a special offer to those of you who are connected here in this community, so here's the deal: if you sign up to attend The Art Of Marketing  using this link you will get the special rate of $349 per person. Please use the promo code: RK28. Tickets will likely go quickly, there are  two types of tickets available general admission seating which includes the full day conference and speakers fro $399.00 plus taxes. There is also VIP package that will include seating in the first 5 rows, lunch and copies of books from select speakers, this package is $499.00. The promo code will discount both packages.

I have no idea how the producers of this event can pull off a show like this with such a high-calibre list of speakers for only $349 a ticket (Canadian, no less), but that's your gain as you can easily see this truly a stellar group of speakers coming to Toronto.

The Art of Marketing - Toronto Tuesday March 02 from 9:00am to 5:00pm
Metro Toronto Convention Centre
255 Front Street West Toronto, Ontario

Monday, January 25, 2010

FearlessQA - The Advertising Industry and the Issue of Diversity

The advertising industry and the topic of "Diversity" is often seen as both an "much need" and "why bother" discussion depending on where you stand.

This weeks Crispin Porter + Bogusky webcast "FearlessQA" (available on Justin.Tv) will tackle this very interesting and timely topic of "Diversity in the Advertising Industry". Guest joining Alex Bogusky will be Lincoln Stephens a former advertising account management executive turned activist and founder of The Marcus Graham Project and Shelton Scott of DDB Chicago who in 2006 was recognized as a "Rising Star" in the marketing business by Diversity in Business.

What makes it timely is within the next few months there will be a fresh crew of young "Adlanders" hitting the streets looking for jobs and may face issues that are often not obvious or seen until you truly stop and look around. They will look around to see if there is truly "Diversity" within the agency of choice. But what does "diversity" really mean? Is purely based on race? Is it gender? Can be seen in terms of agism? Big questions, with very few answers.

An interesting POV is that many advertising agencies and their client view "diversity" as a bottom line issue. The advertising industry recognized that the "diversity" in terms of race was an issue in terms of content and became concerned and knowledgeable about the impact of potential buying power.

So back to the questions of "diversity". What is it exactly?

The Canadian Advertising Foundation (CAF) issued specific "Gender Portrayal Guidelines" to "diversity" as an issue of the portrayal of men and women, but leave race completely out of the picture:
Advertising should portray both women and men in the full spectrum of diversity and as equally competent in a wide range of activities both inside and outside the home.
If you get a copy of the Canadian Code of Advertising Standards - read Clause 15 of the Code which deals with taste and public decency:
"It is recognized that standards of taste are subjective and vary widely from person to person and community to community, and are, indeed, subject to constant change. Advertising must not present demeaning or derogatory portrayals of individuals or groups; must not exploit violence, sexuality, children, the customs, convictions or characteristics of religious or ethno-cultural groups, persons with disabilities or any other person, group or institution in a manner which is offensive to generally prevailing standards.
I guess it really is a great debate that is often seen as uncomfortable, but clearly worthy of dialogue.

In preparing my students for the upcoming FearlessQA, I researched the topic and the guests and came upon the website home of the The Marcus Graham Project (MGP), this site is dedicated to being a resource for "a national network of diverse professionals" that will assist in developing the next generation of leadership within the advertising, media and marketing industry. The MGP
"identify, expose, mentor and train ethnically diverse men between the ages of 16 and 34 in all aspects of the media industry, including advertising, entertainment and marketing".
"... (MGP) vision is to provide long-term access to information, technology, financial and people resources that will strategically develop a viable pool of talent and leadership within the industry".
The Marcus Graham Project acts as a pro-bono marketing consultancy to non-profit and social change initiatives. Through the support of corporate and private partners.

MPG also works as a training program through "iCr8 Bootcamp". The iCr8  Summer Bootcamp, is specifically designed to provide diverse aspirants in the field of advertising & marketing with the exposure and experience necessary to solidify careers within the advertising, media & marketing industry. The summer long program, held in Dallas, Texas. Bootcamp was piloted during the summer of 2009 with seven (7) participants chosen through an application process, portfolio review and in-person interview held during the spring. If you are interested in this years iCr8 Bootcamp you can apply the deadline is February 12th, 2010.

Tune in this Thursday, Janauary 28 Live or watch the rebroadcast at any time at

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Yes Men You Can Keep Your Balls Clean With Axe!

Oh good G-d I generally hate the "pun" and "double entendre", "sexual innuendo" and this spot for the Axe Detailer may win awards for hte total number, count them... I was ready to take bets on an under/over.

The casting also makes this spot perfect for the target, featuring Jamie Pressley (as Monica Blake) who plays an ex-tennis star spokesperson for Axe and their new product: “The Axe Detailer“ a product meant to clean more then mans’ balls, but this spot reminds us indeed your little friends down there also need to be washed from time to time!

The ad itself had me smiling, maybe even laughing, but it is a little to heavy on the pun and the double entendre. It does take a seriously talented writer to keep the momentum in this type of spot, keeping you engaged beyond the third pun/entendre... so well done. My favorite creative highlight is at the end of the's all about words and visuals isn't it (hint, hint..wink wink)!

Seriously, I shouldn't have "bone" on for this ad because Axe products are aimed at teenagers or men who still think like teenagers.

The spot was created by BBH, New York.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

When You Actually Listen. A True Story - "The Pizza Turnaround"

Say what you want... I like this brand... I like that brand... but this is the true story of how Domino's listened to its harshest critics and made their best pizza ever.

Amazing when a company actually listens.

One of the elements I enjoyed seeing is the actual pride each employee had in the product that they produced.

Starring actual Domino's employees.

Agancy of record is Crispin Porter + Bogusky

Friday, January 15, 2010

Toronto AD WEEK 2010 - It's Brave New Year and Decade Ahea

It's a brave New Year and Decade ahead, and at this year's Advertising Week 2010, will be starting the conversation and action.

AdWeek Toronto will kick-off Monday January 25th in the morning with a Launch Breakfast Panel Discussion Moderated by Terry O’Reilly and sponsored by Canwest, with content assistance from the Canadian Advertising Museum.  This is a by invitation only breakfast event will celebrate the opening of the second Advertising Week in Canada. It will be attended by 250 - 300 client and agency leaders, sponsor CEOs, academic thought leaders, government officials and the media.

It's just one of many events scheduled for the January 25 to January 29 for AdWeek 2010 that will be held in various venues around Toronto.

There are two significant events geared towards young "AdLanders", Next Generation Day. Following a tremendously successful inaugural year, Advertising Week’s Next Generation Day is back, bigger and better than before! Student teams will start the day with an exclusive screening of Art & Copy at the ROM, including breakfast, before being whisked away to experience ‘A Day in the Life’ at one of 20 agencies for the unique opportunity to work with some of the best and brightest in the business. Students will come up with a "BIG IDEA" for Your Life Counts (YLC) that will be judged by industry experts. The winning team will be announced at the Next Generation party that night and has the chance to win some incredible prizes including the possibility of having their work produced.

The other great event for all future "AdLAnders" is the screening of Art&Copy. the film reveals the stories behind and the personal odysseys of some of the most influential advertising visionaries of our time and their campaigns, including Lee Clow (Apple Computer 1984, and today’s iPod); Dan Wieden (“Just Do It”); Phyllis K. Robinson (who invented the “me generation” with Clairol); Hal Riney (who helped President Reagan get re-elected); and George Lois (who saved MTV and launched Tommy Hilfiger overnight). Directed by Doug Pray (HYPE! and Scratch), Art&Copy captures the creative energy and passion behind the iconic campaigns that have had a profound impact on American culture.

Other highlights include Wednesday's presentation of the Speaker Series sponsored by MDC Partners titled Creativity in the New Age. Speakers include 
Brandon Berger - Vice President, Digital Innovation, MDC Partners Ryan Wolman - Creative Director, henderson bas Steven Thibodeau - Chief Digital Officer, Kirshenbaum Bond Senecal + Partners. The panel will discuss the new roles of creativity in a fragmented media landscape where the consumer is in control.

Also Thursday, in the evening, the CASSIES will honour deserving marketers and agencies in Canada's award show dedicated to recognizing business effectiveness of advertising.

On Friday, the action returns to the ROM for Google Canada's Jonathan Lister, who will outline the evolution of online video and how it impacts social marketing and communication spaces.

During the entire week, The Radio Marketing Bureau and members of the CHUM radio/CTVglobemedia, Astral Media, Rogers Media, Milestone and MZ Media radio chains will host a social networking happy hour at Lobby Bar from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. to help everyone unwind.

Hopee to see you there.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

MTVs Jersey Shore Gives Dove "Evolution" New Life and Shore Props!

So maybe imitation isn't the sincerest form of flattery? Scary.

"Evolution" was a mega award winning online advertising effort from Dove created by Ogilvy Toronto, and now has a second life through the art of parody.

Found this video "exclusive" on the website over the weekend, and it already has over 1.5 million views there and another 25,000 views on YouTube. Crazy!

Count Italian-American Alyssa Milano among the non-fans of MTV's new reality "Jersey Shore" Ms Milano has made it clear that she finds the reality series offensive. But that doesn't mean she can't joke about it. The actress filmed this short exclusive for showing her evolution from pretty girl to "guidette" — which "actually looks a lot more like blackface" which is even more offensive.

The weekly show follows the reality (somewhat scripted) booze-fueled nights of eight self-described "guidos" and "guidettes" on the New Jersey shore. The show has outraged Italian-Americans, who claim it exploits a stereotype and gives the vacation destination a bad rap.

Hey I grew up in Ocean City, NJ every summer until I finshed college... and, well if "ya ain't been there" and lived with the charm that is the South Philly "guidos" and "guidettes"... okay I digress. I spent 3 weeks at a shore house last summer and I gotta tell you not much has changed in the 30+ years since I was a "Ute" (youth) living in a shore town.

UNICO National, the nation's largest Italian American service organization, has even asked MTV to cancel the show.


The original Dove spot was created from the budget left over from the earlier Daughters campaign, and was intended to be the first in a series of such online-focused spots. Launched by Unilever brand "Dove" in 2006 as part of its "Dove Campaign for Real Beauty" to promote the newly created Dove Self-Esteem Fund.

The centre of the Unilever campaign is a 75-second spot produced by Ogilvy & Mather in Toronto under the creative direction of the brilliant team of  Nancy Vonk and Janet Kestin (both are excellent nurturers of young creative talent). The piece was first displayed online on October 2006, and was later broadcast as a television and cinema spot.

The spot was an absolute critical, pop culture, and financial success. It won a number of awards in the advertising industry, including two Cannes Lions Grand Prix awards. It has been discussed in many mainstream television programs and print publications, and the exposure generated by the spot has been estimated to be worth over $150M.Today on YouTube "Evolution" has more than 3.2 million views.

This is not the first time "Evolution" has been given a parody maleover, it also spawned numerous unofficial alternate versions on YouTube, seen as a opening sequence for the BBC show Ruddy Hell! and the short parody "Slob Evolution", which has gone on to itself be nominated for a Daytime Emmy Award and have over 2 million views.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

DELAYED BY DEATH: The Best of Times and... The Year and Decade in Review


HaPpY nEw YeAr!!!

Here I sit in the Apple Store in Downtown Toronto with only a mild chill in my bones... outside it is rather frightful as a winter storm has blown into town. Driving in the blinding snow is not fun only to find out that my MacBook is on life support.

My MacBook Pro has suffered a untimely death, but not a "gonna-cost-me-a-ton" death. Regular and Extended AppleCare warranties are so important. So this quick update is being done as I sit on stool waiting for the final word... dead LogicBoard or LCD. Gotta love instant diagnostics.

The greatness of being a perfect brand is perfect service... from the "front door" to the "Genius Bar" its been nothing but warm, welcoming and perfect, but that won't get my blog update online for at least another 3-5 days.

Look for the AdGuys "The Best of Times and... The Year and Decade in Review" coming once I am back up and running... gotta get a great iPhone App to blog with.

Until I am back up and running... Peace and love for year ahead and may this decade be your moment to shine.

Anthony Kalamut

ps. Small world... ran into Seneca grad and now Account Director at BBDO Toronto Chris Perron and his beautiful daughter Charlotte at this Apple Store... 12 years later he looks the same but is as wonderful as ever. Man the Creative Advertising family has grown and grown.
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