OgilvyOne Handles Its Own Recruiting Campaign

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Direct marketers at OgilvyOne Worldwide, New York, have created an outdoor, mass-targeted marketing campaign to attract prospective colleagues.

The campaign began last week with an ad featuring a man holding his head in his hands and the tag line, "Use it wisely." The only other copy is an OglivyOne logo in the bottom corner next to the words, "Resumes to: ogilvyone.com."

The campaign includes wildpostings, sidewalk displays and subway station posters that have been strategically posted around Manhattan, particularly in areas near offices of competing agencies. The concept of surrounding the competition -- literally -- is a new one for the agency, but one that seemed to make sense.

"We thought of doing an unusual direct mailing, but then we thought about it and decided it would be a lot more efficient to do a mass-targeted outdoor effort," said Bruce Lee, creative director and copywriter who worked on the campaign with art director Julie Lam and account director Christian Carino. "We know where they work. We know where they live, so why not go there."

Experienced at promoting companies in a variety of industries, the agency found that promoting itself isn't as easy as it seems.

"Self promotion is the hardest kind of advertising. We knew that one thing that works really well is a really strong graphic, and we had that," said Lee, noting that the art actually was shot for something else but saved because the image was so powerful. "Then we thought about what to say and we came up with a lot of lines and copy and it ended up long. We decided to get down to the essence, and that's when we came up with 'Use it wisely.' "

Although hirings are expected across the board to accommodate additional work from existing clients such as IBM and Ford and new clients such as Bertelsmann Online, the agency does not expect to hire many more people than last year, said spokeswoman Mary Fichter. The figures for how many new positions the company expects to fill were not available.

The current posters will run until Oct. 15, when they will be replaced by others that show a woman who has been separated into pieces accompanied by the tag line, "Not complete?" Those posters will run until Nov. 1.

Both posters drive traffic to the Web site, where a thumb-nail image of the ad is posted on the home page. Clicking on the ad sends people to a job opportunity page where current copy asks prospective employees, "Got a good head on your shoulders?"

The Web copy contains a few references to the current poster, for example it notes that opportunities are available for both left- and right-brained individuals. It also includes some more playful interview questions, such as, "So what do you do, besides stare into a computer screen?"

"I think people can appreciate that we can have a little humor and that it doesn't have to be that serious," Lee said. "I mean it is your job, but there can be a little levity."

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