New Hires and Promotions

Looks like things are hopping over at Oliver Russell & Associates:

Rich Clark has been hired as an interactive art director. While it isn’t specifically mentioned, sources tell me that Rich is working out of Oliver Russell’s Portland office, rather than the Boise office.
Kelli Fulton has been promoted from copywriter to senior copywriter.
Arynn Oyler has been promoted from account coordinator to account executive.

Congratulations to all.

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New Website

Es/drake has finally launched their new website, after a few months of “coming soon” promises. I gave it a quick run-through this morning, and its got a good look-and-feel to it. There’s quite a bit of information on the site, which is always promising, although the navigation could use a little help (my own opinion, of course).

To the folks over at es/drake: Well done. You’ve set the bar high for yourselves, and your challenge will now be to meet those expectations on a regular basis. Remember, in today’s online world its all about the content. If its a sexy-looking flash-based site, but the news is six months old, you’d better believe I won’t be back any time soon.

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Still Waiting

Its now been four days since the Rockies Awards were handed out, but still nothing from the Boise Advertising Federation, or individual agencies, indicating who won what.

The fact is well documented — award-winning work produces better results for the client. So why not take a moment to pat yourself on the back for what you’ve accomplished (just don’t break your arm doing it). The recognition also becomes one more piece of the puzzle that is your ability to “sell” the agency to potential future clients.

Or was everything produced last year really that bad?

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Rockies Award Winners

So the Rockies were last Saturday, and I’m wondering who is going to be the first to mention either A)The overall winners or B)Individual awards won by agency.

Now the natural place to look first would be on the Boise Advertising Federation’s website, since they are the ones, after all, that host the event to begin with. Is there a list of winners? Nope. In fact, they are still asking visitors to RSVP for last Saturday’s event.

A quick trip around various agency websites reveals — nothing.

I have to assume that either no awards were handed out (not likely), or that suddenly everyone has gotten shy and doesn’t want to brag about their success (again, not likely). And the excuse of “we’re too busy doing client work to make changes to our website” just doesn’t hold a hell of a lot of water, in my opinion. Newsflash — you are your own client, and if you can’t make the time to do your own work, you run the risk of losing future (paying) client work because you were under evaluation, the appearance was that nothing interesting/worthwhile was coming out of your shop.

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Job Opening

Not here in Idaho, but rather at Sullivan Higdon & Sink’s Wichita, Kansas office. The interesting part, however, is not the job, but how they chose to list it. They’ve posted the job opening on the American Copywriter blog.

So rather than listing the job on an online job site or relying only on the local newspaper, they’ve put this job listing out in front of an audience that is already interested in the industry, and as likely listeners to the American Copywriter podcast, that same audience is already familiar with the agency.

To me its a striking example of how the work that they’ve put into building both American Copywriter, and Sullivan Higdon & Sink as brands will now pay off in ways that were never originally expected. And the cost? Time, and thinking of their business as more than just a series of names on the door.

So, the question stands — how long until someone here does anything similar?

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And in contrast…

I posted about the Franklin Building Supply campaign a couple of weeks ago, which I still think is a well-done campaign overall. In contrast, however, I heard a radio spot recently for Hubble Homes that just cannot go without comment.

The entire :30 radio spot is nothing but one long cheezy jingle. Not just as an intro before the real meat of the commercial, but the entire thing! Its spots like this that will continue to drive both aided and unaided recall down, making radio as a medium that much more ineffective. I’m still a firm believer that radio can be an effective part of a good media plan, but you’ve got to give the listener something worth listening to!

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Let me get this straight…

Just from my own observations, it would seem that most of the agencies in Idaho are doing very little, or so the “news” sections of their websites would have you believe (if they even have a news section, that is)…

Here’s just a sample:
Stoltz Marketing Group – the last news item on their site is dated January 5, 2006. Apparently they’ve taken the rest of the winter off?
Noot Group – heck, from their site I’d guess they checked out almost a year ago!
What’s even more shocking is the number of agency websites that don’t even bother to include a news area within their own websites. Come on folks! Give people a reason to visit your site more than once every two years! How am I, as a visitor to an agency’s website, supposed to know what’s new if the whole thing looks exactly the same as it did the last time I was there. Added to your portfolio recently? Well then tell me about it. Odds are, I’ll read the news that’s there, and then go on to another section (such as a portfolio). See where this is going…

From a potential client’s point of view — give me a reason to go to your site regularly, and they’ll go back to your site regularly. The more often they visit, the better they get to know the agency. The better they know the agency, the easier time they’ll have deciding whether or not you’re the right place for them to take their business. If they never see any changes, though, the site, and consequently the company, looks stale — not the kind of place I’d take my business if it were my choice to make.

Now I’ve heard the arguments that this is a face-to-face business, and in a lot of cases, yes it is. But let’s face it (no pun intended), your website is the face of your business online. So why would you continue to have a stale, faceless site out there?

As always, there are exceptions to the rule, notably:
Oliver Russell – since the redesign of their site, they’ve done a good job of putting out bits and pieces in their “What’s Happening” section. A few stories each month/tidbits of info is all, but its enough to keep me going back to see what’s new.
Es/drake – for the past couple of months their site has been promising changes, but I’ve yet to see it happen. Jury is still out.

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