From the fall of Christchurch to the rise of ‘manvertising’—and everything inbetween

While we obviously enjoy the fact that the marcomms community seems to like getting its fix of marketing, advertising and media news, views and hullaballoos on StopPress, we’re still dirty old traditionalists who like nothing more than sitting back with one of those old, supposedly antiquated paper-based things known as magazines. And there’s plenty of editorial goodness to soak up in the May/June edition of NZ Marketing, which is filled with what a host of Belgian experts have said is ‘Essential Marketing Intelligence’. As such, you can probably ask the boss to pay for a subscription, but to grease the wheels you can get 35 percent off the retail price (subscribe for one year here or two years here) if you sign up before Friday. Anyway, enough of the sales pitch. Here’s what you’ll find in the latest issue.

  • As we’ve all seen, life is exceedingly difficult for everyone muddling through in Christchurch at the moment. The roads are jammed, the winter of discontent has begun, damaged infrastructure is struggling to cope, shakes continue to rattle nerves and, for many, it seems more about existing than living. Everyone, in every industry, was affected by the Canterbury earthquakes in some way, so, for our cover story, we decided to ask five high-profile members of the Christchurch advertising community to tell us how they coped after the disaster, how it affected their businesses and the wider marcomms community and how they think ‘brand Christchurch’ can be repaired. If their first person accounts are anything to go by, Cantabrians are tough as old boots and adaptable as hell. They’re also amazingly optimistic about what their city will eventually become if the reconstruction process is thought through properly. They all see it as an opportunity to start afresh and, whether through strategy, urban design, communications solutions, branding or implementation, these stories show that those working in the creative, persuasive industries have a significant role to play in making our second-biggest city an even better place to live.
  • One company that doesn’t seem to have too many budgetary concerns at the moment is Wellington digital agency Resn, primarily because it’s doing so much work for big global clients. It’s easy to say ‘We want to do international work from New Zealand’. But, having created some amazing interactive trickery for the likes of Toyota, Puma, Dominos and MySpace—and winning a cabinetful of high-profile international awards in the process—Resn is one of the rare few companies in the local marcomms space that is actually doing it regularly and successfully. It really is a great, slightly under-the-radar business success story—and not just because it’s a successful business, but because the main protagonists have managed to maintain their sense of whimsy along the way (as evidenced by their website, the quirky press releases and the homage to Bohemian Rhapsody the staff posed for in the photo.
  • If you’re looking for inspiration, the second part of the ‘Cash for Ideas’ project takes the form of an enlightening 32-page guide to innovation and new product development, there’s also an in-depth examination of the local publishing industry and the reasons for its steadily increasing optimism in 2011; a look at the issue of sexual stereotyping and the possible reasons behind a recent glut of ‘manvertising’; an interview with .99’s chief executive Neil Livingstone, who’s hanging up his advertising boots after 33 years in the industry; a rundown on how the local screen industries are being forced to adapt their business models to survive; a freshly redesigned section of news and views from the Marketing Association; and the usual collection of wise words and sage advice from our impressive menagerie of big-brained columnists, including a critique of unnecessary innovation from The Research Agency’s Andrew Lewis, an explanation of paid, owned and earned media from Michael Carney, an international take on New Zealand’s advertising scene from Axis judge and Kiwi expat Andy Fackrell, an ode to coupons by Ben Goodale, AJ Park’s guide to avoiding ‘genericide’ and some classic old Resene ads from years gone by.


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