Ads up: Time for Crain’s to toot its own horn again
As a longtime reader of Crain’s Chicago Business, I always liked their old marketing slogan: “Where the Who's Who Read What's What.” It not only summed up the product in a neat, catchy phrase, but it struck me as vaguely aspirational. (If I’m reading Crain’s, that must put me with Chicago’s Who’s Who, right?)
But times have been tough for all print media, and it’s been years since Crain’s has made any concerted effort to promote its flagship business weekly or its website. Now, with the reorganization of its print and digital news operation complete and its move to new state-of-the-art headquarters, the time is right to grab some attention again.
There's also looming competition on the business news front with Jim Kirk, former chief of editorial operations at Crain's, heading a revitalized Sun-Times newsroom and planning a new Monday business section.
On Monday, Crain’s will launch its first new branding campaign since 2008 and begin rolling out a series of ads that will appear in print, outdoor media and on radio through the fall. Featuring bold white headlines on dark red backgrounds, the first three ads say:
- Become A Former Member of the 99%.
- Contains Accelerants.
- Raising Tax Brackets Since 1978.
"A continued investment in our newsroom, along with our stable family ownership, has increasingly made Crain's the primary print and online news source for Chicago's opinion leaders,” Crain’s publisher David Snyder told me. “This new campaign will help us introduce our brand of independent, smart journalism to a new generation."
Lisa Emerick, marketing director of Crain’s, said the campaign was created by Mitch Gordon, group creative director at Ogilvy & Mather, and Steve Silver, who left Ogilvy after starting the project and has since gone out on his own. “We think the ads are clever and will help re-introduce us to a group of young professionals who may not have grown up with Crain's,” Emerick said. “The message hasn't really changed: Crain's helps you succeed.”
Added Snyder: "Whether in a boardroom or at a cocktail party, the Crain's reader is always the smart one in the room. In a clever way, these ads explain why."