Unilever dump agency for Idea Bounty

We've seen how "social media" like Facebook, YouTube and Twitter have, in the space of a few years, transformed the consumer media landscape. These three sites combined over 170 million unique users in the USA alone.

Could the same thing happen in the world of marketing on the business side? Unilever certain think so. Their Peperami brand has parted company with Lowe, their ad agency for 15 years. According to Campaign, they will be using the online creative network called "Idea Bounty" to come up with a new global ad campaign. This very cool online creative network has been developed by interactive marketing company Quirk, based in Cape Town, South Africa.

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The client, in this case meat snack Pepperami (see below for the animated Pepperami) will give a brief to Idea Bounty. They then post it on their website, and creatives all over the world who have signed up work on it. They call this "crowdsourcing". The winner is selected and wins a 'bounty' of $10,000. The winning ad will be turned into a global campaign, with the help of Smart Works. This by the way, this is another interesting business, who out-source ad and web production "offshore" to lower-cost countries than the UK, cutting costs by 50% versus London prices.
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Idea Bounty has been used already by SAB Miller, Red Bull and BMW. But the Unilever gig is the biggest thing Idea Bounty have pulled off so far. My guess is that this is the brief they refer to on their home page as the "most exciting, wildest and craziest brief yet".

I think this is really interesting on several levels:
1. It e-enables and amplifies an existing habit, of agencies using freelance creatives to work on briefs.

2. It allows focused creative development when you need it, rather than needing the cost of an incumbent agency.

3. You should in theory be able to multiply your chances of getting a good idea, by having multiple creative people working on your brief

The key for Idea Bounty will be getting enough briefs, and enough creatives, growing together. If they pull off the Perperami brief, that could be just the PR they need to take off.

My ex Added Value colleague Mark Sherrington is working with Quirk, so if you are interested in working with Idea Bounty leave a comment, or drop me an email, and I can maybe get you an inside line to them.