2007 turned out to be a decent year for the mega-agencies. IPG, the parent company of MWW and Weber Shandwick, reported a 6 percent increase in revenue in 2007, while WPP posted a 14 percent increase. Hopefully your agency saw similar increases in 2007, because 2008 could be an ugly year for us all if the economy doesn’t show some signs of life.
Amid all the talk of upstarts Denver Magazine and Denver Life, and the now-defunct Shine, 5280 is trying to remind Denverites who the 800-pound gorilla is by announcing its biggest press run ever. The mag will print 100,000 copies of its March issue (“Best Restaurants”) in anticipation of heavy newsstand sales.
PRimaDonna PR has landed several new clients, including Brand Juice, Grand Teton Lodge Company, Brazilets and Trio Interior Design. Public relations at Brand Juice, Brazilets and Trio previously was handled in-house, while Grand Teton formerly was represented by LeGrand Hart before dropping them and switching to PRimaDonna.
Let’s all shed some crocodile tears for Anti-Gym owner and notorious chubby-taunter (“No Chubbies”) Michael Karolchyk, whose gym in Cherry Creek North has shut down. His barrage of offensive and annoying television commercials weren’t enough to save his troubled enterprise. Now if he had only sunk some of that money into public relations instead of advertising …
Our apologies for making fun of Hub Cap Annie’s desire to transition into public relations — it turns out she’s much more qualified than we gave her credit for.
Miami/Boulder-based Crispin Porter + Bogusky has won the $300 million Microsoft advertising account, beating out Minneapolis-based Fallon.
KCNC/Channel 4 finally confirmed that Karen Leigh will replace Molly Hughes as Jim Benemann’s co-anchor. Hughes will become a “special correspondent” for the station, presumably spending most of her time mailing audition tapes to TV stations across the country. Additionally, KCNC/Channel 4 announced it will begin broadcasting in High-Def starting April 21.
What does Dr. Seuss think about his book Horton Hears a Who being used by the anti-abortion group Colorado for Equal Rights to argue that life begins at conception? Well, not much. He’s been dead for 16 years.
Illiteracy can be a tough hurdle to overcome when you are a teleprompter-dependent television sports anchor. If you can actually watch all four minutes of this clip without shuddering, you have the empathy level of a serial killer.
Among those hiring this week: Frontier Airlines (didn’t they just lay off a bunch of marketing people?), Heedum Agency, Kaiser Permanente, NREL, Pure Brand, Colorado Restaurant Association, Brightstar Education Group, VisiTech, RNL and United Dominion Realty Trust.
The shake-out from Sydney Ayers’ decision to leave her own firm to take the MD job at Arment Dietrich’s new Denver office appears to have started. Floor-care company BonaKemi USA has left Ayers PR after approximately eight months and selected LeGrand Hart as its agency. LeGrand Hart seems like a natural fit because it previously rep’ed Orange Glo, but curiously it appears based on its Web site that most of the team members who worked on the agency’s Orange Glo account have since left the firm.
From selling hub caps on East Colfax to a career in public relations. That’s probably a lateral career move, right?
After all the speculation about tech giants Microsoft, Google and Yahoo, it turns out that a boring old oil company bought the former StorageTek campus. ConocoPhillips plans to use the site as a “global campus” and will make a major push in renewable energy.
Sure, life was tough for CU-Boulder spokesman Bronson Hilliard when Buffalo Chip decided to go gangsta, but let’s all take a moment to appreciate that we don’t have his job today. Among his current challenges:
- 10 CU fraternity pledges were arrested after trashing a Super 8 Motel in Estes Park.
- A staff editor at the CU Campus Press authored a column headlined “If It’s War the Asians Want … It’s War They’ll Get” stating that all Asians hate whites and that “it’s time we start hating them back.”
- The CU-Boulder campus has split over the selection of oil mogul Bruce Benson as the president of the CU System.
Sadly, the Gawker vs. Edelman catfight seems to be petering out. Gawker started the fireworks by accusing Edelman of telling new employees that as flacks “sometimes you just have to stand up there and lie.” That hardly seemed in the spirit of CEO Richard Edelman’s public comments on the importance of transparency, but Edelman also pimps Wal-Mart, so it’s hard to tell who is telling the truth.
- Coors Brewing Co.’s Olga Garcia as Business Woman of the Year
- Solera Bank’s James Perez Foster as Business Man of the Year
- State Sen. Abel Tapia as Public Official of the Year
- Allstate’s Mimi Bell as the Chamber Advocate of the Year
Joanne Ostrow has the details of MGA Communications’ Side-Effect Bingo game.
So who is suffering most from the increasing trend of newspapers such as the Denver Post folding local business coverage into other sections? Readers interested in local business dynamics, of course. But Ad Age speculates that small, local public relations firms also will be harmed because “they may have trouble securing news coverage without them.”
Among those hiring this week: Dumb Friends League, Jeppesen, Reed Elsevier, Regis University, Republic Financial, Seagate Technology, Turner PR, LeGrand Hart and VisiTech.
The Denver Business Journal covers the activities that the “seasoned” Sharon Linhart and her downtown Denver task force have planned for the 1952 2008 Democratic National Convention in late August. Among them:
- An “original orchestral score is being composed and will be performed by an orchestra from Denver.”
- An event called Artocracy, “in which people will stand in a central spot downtown and read portions of the United States Constitution, Bill of Rights or Declaration of Independence.”
- A four-minute commemorative film “to show faces and places downtown.”
David Milstead at the Rocky has the latest Denver Newspaper Agency (DNA) numbers. Overall, it’s not good. Revenue for Q4 2007 dropped nearly 11 percent to $94.3 million. The DNA, attempting to put lipstick on the pig, points out that the 11 percent decline was less than the 12 percent decline the previous quarter.
Pete Coors has the public relations departments at both Coors and Miller working overtime to distance the companies from his claim that neither Denver nor Milwaukee will be considered for the headquarters of the soon-to-be MillerCoors. Reportedly, Dallas and Chicago are the frontrunners (deja vu of the United and Boeing searches for new headquarters), but both Denver and Milwaukee have vowed to fight for it.
Aldo Svaldi at the Denver Post covers the high-end Denver-area magazine battlefield.
Deep down, we all knew that news anchors hate reporters. This clip gets fun at the one-minute mark.
To date, the mass exodus from the Rocky Mountain News and the Denver Post has largely been limited to reporters, but the departures continue and now include titles such as Web developer. It’s bad enough to lose reporters to PR firms, but when you begin losing your staff to the likes of photobucket.com, it is clear that the challenges facing newspapers are unlike anything they’ve faced before.
104 West Partners has promoted Jennifer Dunlap Roane to vice president and hired MacLean Guthrie as account director. Guthrie is one of a string of people who has held the dreaded “Director of Corporate Communications” position at Quark recently.
Forbes has crunched the numbers and calculates that Denver is the fourth greediest city in the nation. A look at the formula, however, shows that “greedy” is more of a Forbes marketing gimmick than a realistic representation of the cities mentioned. To identify the “greediest” cities, Forbes calculated the number of Forbes 400 members per 100,000 residents. Denver landed behind San Jose, San Francisco and Seattle.
Colorado Rep. Larry Liston (R-Colorado Springs) apologizes for calling unwed teenage parents “sluts.”
ARCADIS VP of Corporate Communications Andrew Hudson has issued an RFP for public relations services. Details are here: pr-agency-rfp-finali.doc
- GroundFloor Media announced it won the VICORP Restaurants (Village Inn and Baker’s Square) account.
- ProConnect announced it won the Unity Business Networks and Innovative Sound Solutions accounts.
- InterPro announced it won the Metro Denver Automobile Dealers Association and 2008 Denver International Auto Show accounts.
Changes continue at the Denver Post, and they don’t portend good things for the paper’s business reporters and editors. The Post today confirmed that it will combine its weekday “Business” and “Denver & The West” sections due to a lack of advertising support for the business section.
Sydney Ayers has walked away from Ayers PR to take the Managing Director job at Arment Dietrich’s new Denver office. Ayers’ partner in her old firm, her father Rendall Ayers, will continue Ayers PR as its sole owner.
Denver Zoo PR Manager Tiffany Barnhart attempts to diplomatically explain that the point of a zoo is to allow people to see animals they wouldn’t otherwise run across in their backyards.
Among those hiring this week are VisiTech, Webolutions, Western Resource Advocates and Xcel.