NRL Women in League

by NRL

The National Rugby League's vision for women and girls is to ensure they continue to be included, respected and engaged equally in all aspects of Rugby League.

Over 190,000 women and girls are participating in all forms of Rugby League (touch, tag and tackle) and with female participation the fastest growing category in the Game, it is more crucial than ever to continue to build a success platform for further participation and engagement.

The Harvey Norman Women in League Round, occurring in Round 20 (July 20 – July 23), is a way to acknowledge the role of women in the game, particularly their contributions at a grassroots level.

2017 started with a bang for women in our game with the Indigenous Women's All Stars team defeating the Women's All Stars for the first time. We also saw the inaugural Women's Country v City match played and during Women in League Round the Women's Interstate Challenge will become the first female Rugby League match broadcast live on TV.

Read more here.

Andy Reynolds
Archibald / Williams to launch Somark Innovations products

by AdNews

Creative agency Archibald / Williams has been appointed to develop the brand identity and communications strategy for Somark’s SensaLab ecosystem launch. Somark, which has its headquarters in San Diego, is a data lab which looks into animal welfare. Somark has based its development and manufacturing operations at the Tonsley Innovation Hub in Adelaide, South Australia. The company will use its Adelaide base to develop technology that will greatly improve the efficiency and accuracy of pre-clinical medical research. More on the agency here

Andy Reynolds
NRL Power for Change

by NRL State of Mind 

The NRL has launched the second in a series of community campaigns, highlighting the power for change that NRL players, referees and clubs are delivering to promote positive mental wellbeing amongst communities.
 
St George Illawarra player and NRL State of Mind ambassador Joel Thompson fronts the campaign, which focusses on the game’s State of Mind program delivery within grassroots clubs and local communities.
 
In Australia, one in five people will experience mental illness in any one year and at the crisis end, suicide is the largest killer of individuals aged 15 – 44.
 
Thompson is one of 30 NRL State of Mind ambassadors in 2017, with 13 new ambassadors joining the program this year, including NRL referees Matt Cecchin and Ben Cummins.
 
“I’ve been part of the State of Mind program since the start and I’ve come to realise how important education around the topic of mental wellbeing is,” Thompson said.
 
“My role as an ambassador – and for my own personal growth – has been the opportunity to share my story.
 
“When you see the difference this program makes within clubs and the wider community, you couldn’t be prouder to be a part of the NRL and what they are doing.”
 
NRL Head of Government and Community Relations, Jaymes Boland-Rudder said the game’s efforts in raising awareness about mental health and delivering programs to improve mental wellbeing in local rugby league clubs had grown considerably over the past few years.
 
“The NRL State of Mind program is into its third year and in that time, the rugby league community – at all levels and roles within the game – have had access to increased resources and support for one another,” Mr Boland-Rudder said. 
 
“Whether it be resilience programs delivered to NRL Clubs or the State of Mind Grassroots program delivered to local rugby league clubs across Australia and New Zealand, we are working hard as a game to do all we can to support our rugby league community.
 
“Mental wellbeing is an issue that most of us will face at times throughout life and as a sport with a significant voice within communities, we have a responsibility to support and educate not only those connected within our game, but also those around us.
 
“Joel’s story and the stories of many others help to normalise that it’s ok to put your hand up and reach out for help."
 
The NRL’s State of Mind program is supported in partnership with expert health partners: Kids Helpline, The Black Dog Institute, headspace, Lifeline and New Zealand based organisation, Le Va.
 
For more information on the NRL’s State of Mind program and other Community Programs that the NRL delivers, visit www.nrl.com/forchange
 
The ‘Power For Change’ campaign builds on the narrative of existing community programs and initiatives undertaken year-round by all levels of the game and supported more broadly throughout communities.

Andy Reynolds
Semi Permanent 2017

by Archibald/Willaims

Semi Permanent is a global design platform that curates live design events all over the world. In its 15th year, Semi Permanent 2017 brought a diverse group of internationally renowned designers and storytellers to the heart of Sydney for 3-days of inspiring talks, panels and workshops. Besides being committed collectors and sharers of good design, the Semi Permanent crew aim to be influencers who enable the design community to improve and grow – this year embracing the official theme ‘Design for Change.’

We sent 3 of our best designers to Carriageworks with a simple objective – get inspired. Of the 40+ artists and designers leading this year’s event, there were a few notable standouts. Vice’s Katherine Keating kicked off the 3-day event whilst speaking passionately about Vice Impact. The new global platform offers opinion, advocacy and a place where the reader can take action on the reported stories and articles immediately after reading them.

Founder of British agency DesignStudio, Paul Stafford, dove deep into the ideas and processes that back two of the biggest global rebrands in recent years – The English Premier League and Airbnb. Hearing from Paul was very insightful as he ran through the agency’s winning bid to re-brand Airbnb. DesignStudio set themselves apart from others from the beginning, transforming their London office space into a bedroom/kitchen for their first creative presentation – a welcoming surprise for the client’s long-haul flight from San Francisco. What a cool and simple way to capture the imagination of the clients!

Another guest speaker to make a lasting impression was 72andSunny Founder Glenn Cole, who took an inspiring and humorous approach as he took to the stage.  Rather than a shameless plug for his agency, or talking in depth through a high profile case study, he chose to highlight the positive impact an optimistic frame of mind can have on idea generation and the creative process at large. His 8-step guide to remaining optimistic in tough times is certainly something we’ll be embracing here at A/W.

A few frosty Bob Hawke Lager’s were enjoyed at the end of each day to reflect on all that we took in. It’s safe to say the event gave us all new insights and encouragement to tackle future design challenges in the ever-changing environment of our industry. We’re looking forward to seeing you next year Semi Permanent – you stay classy. 

Andy, Chad & Tom

Archibald/Williams ups emotional ante for NRL State of Origin

by AdNews

The NRL State of Origin is upping the emotional ante this season, moving away from the physicality of the game and instead showcasing the experience of attending.

Capturing the feeling of Origin from both players and fans perspectives, the 60-second spot moves from the emotion of the locker room to the stands above where fans cheer in anticipation of witnessing the rivalry unfold.

The tagline captures that - whether you’re on the team in the sheds, or participating from the stands – nothing hits you quite like Origin.

With controversy surrounding more rules being introduced that some say sanitise the game, the campaign seeks to remind people that the series is just as fierce and competitive as ever.

NRL GM of marketing and brand Peter Jarmain says the campaign aims to communicate the value of being there.

“Holden State of Origin remains Australia’s biggest and fiercest sporting rivalry. The intensity, both on and off the field, creates a live atmosphere unlike any other sport," he says.

"This campaign provides a window into the last 30 mins pre-kick off, bringing to life the nervous anticipation felt by players and fans alike. With match attendance the key performance measure for this campaign, importantly it’s about showing fans the value of being there.”

The new work follows the launch of the 2017 Premiership season in February, marking the second major campaign from Archibald/Williams since it become the NRL's agency of record last year.

Archibald/Williams ECD Matt Gilmour says the work is some of the best yet from the agency.

“The intensity of every Origin game is something you can feel when you're in the stands. The crunch of the first hit up is what it's all about. But we wanted to take a step back from that and show that the nerves and pressure in the build up is the reason the game is so intense," he says.

Andy Reynolds
NRL and Archibald/Williams incite Power for Change

by Adnews

The National Rugby League (NRL) has rolled out a new campaign that brings the game's community team initiatives to light.

'Power for Change' highlights the work the NRL’s Voice Against Violence program does across the country to educate young males to speak out against domestic violence.

The spot, developed by Archibald/Williams, features former Canberra Raiders Captain and 2016 ACT Australian of the Year Alan Tongue.

The five-minute content piece, supported by a 30-second ad, follows the Queanbeyan Blues junior rugby league team participating in the Voice Against Violence program, led by Tongue.

Archibald/Williams ECD Matt Gilmour says: “Seeing the NRL’s long term commitment to their community and the results they’re getting made us really proud to get involved and make sure their powerful stories are heard.”

The ‘Power for Change’ campaign will run throughout the year with additional stories to come supporting further NRL Community initiatives, including State of Mind, Women in League, School to Work and In League In Harmony programs.

NRL head of community Jaymes Boland-Rudder adds: “Our Community programs and our Power For Change campaign is at the heart of our game and is an opportunity to share our stories and show another side of our game that supports and nurtures fans of all ages.”

Andy Reynolds
Bill Leak cartoon and smashed avocado column focus of The Australian’s new marketing campaign

by Miranda Ward / Mumbrella

The Australian has kicked off a new marketing push drawing on the title’s image and cartoon archive,  including Bill Leak’s controversial Aboriginal fathers cartoon.

The campaign, which kicked off today and is running across television, digital and within the newspaper itself, features different images to highlight the newspaper’s coverage of various events and introduces the new positioning for the News Corp-owned newspaper “For the informed Australian”.

Speaking to Mumbrella, The Australian CEO Nicholas Gray said the campaign is a response to the wider world context, including the rising notion of fake news, and the role of journalism within that.

Created by Archibald/Williams, the campaign also draws from another controversial moment for the title, referencing columnist Bernard Salt’s article which was criticised for its apparent drawing of a link between millennials’ willingness to buy expensive smashed avocado brunches and inability to save for property deposits.

“The key point for us is in an era of fake news, sound bites and pieces of information coming at consumers from a wide array of places, it’s important both our existing readers and potential readers understand that The Australian is a place they can go to get more knowledge and more depth,” Gray told Mumbrella.

“We’ll go deeper into stories, we’ll pursuee them for longer, we’ll carry opinion writers and columnists that will advance both sides of a debate and we’ll decode the complex. It’s about that depth of information and understanding you get from reading The Australian that you can’t get in a lot of other places.”

This ethos for the campaign is encapsulated in one of the pieces of creative which reads as a long copy manifesto for the newspaper.

The campaign aims to increase brand awareness of the publication with the goal of driving paid sales.

“Clearly investing in your brand drives more people to trial the product and more trialists to potentially pay for it,” Gray said.

“Our number one consumer objective is people paying for our content whether that’s newspaper retail sales, digital subscriptions or six-day bundled subscriptions. We’re focused on paid audience, not free audience, and that therefore is our number one objective.”

On the use of the Bill Leak cartoon, Gray said while it was deliberate to remove the caption from the cartoon for the advertisement, it did not indicate the publisher was backing away from it.

“Every piece of creative was very deliberately framed to be the most effective visual representation for an ad,” he said.

“It would be wrong to interpret cutting off the words as not standing by them, it’s more we’ve tried with the creative to be bold, clear, powerful and uncluttered.

“The reason we’re using the Leak cartoon in that context is to recognise the important role that cartoon played in provoking debate.

“There’s an incredible debate that’s ensued both around free speech and 18C that is very important but also around Indigenous children and the care for them, for example the explosion of the Indigenous dads Twitter handle that celebrated a lot of positive stories around Indigenous parenthood.”

Gray acknowledged The Australian’s picture editor Milan Scepanovic “who was intimately involved in selecting all the images”.

“Some of them are our images that our photographers took and many of them are stories we have covered extensively.”

Andy Reynolds
Customer wins with Uno but loses by spending savings on a kayak in ad targeting big bank costs

by Zoe Samios / Mumbrella

A man end up stranded at sea after a series of ‘good’ decisions leaves him with enough money to treat himself to a kayak in a new ad for Uno Home Loans from Archibald Williams

The ad features NIDA-trained actor Guy Edmonds explaining how he “used to make great decisions” and would “never turn down a better deal”.

But after a series of money-saving decisions, the ad cuts to him chatting to a seagull in the middle of the ocean about how he couldn’t say ‘no’ to the Uno Home Loans proposition once he discovered their algorithm and expert offering.

He then quietly asks himself why he bought a kayak with the savings.

The fintech company, which is majority owned by Westpac, launched in October last year.

Kirsty Davison, chief product and marketing officer for Uno said: “It was key for us to show how Uno’s technology, paired with the advice of our experts can help someone get a better deal on their home loan.

Matt Gilmour, executive creative director at Archibald Williams, said: “We took a comedic approach that you wouldn’t normally see from a financial services business to show how Uno makes the right decision easy when it comes to your home loan – even if you don’t make the right ones later.”

Andy Reynolds
NRL calls on fans to ‘Let’s make history happen’ in season launch campaign

by Simon Canning  / Mumbrella

The NRL is sticking with the history theme for the second year running, urging fans to get to the game and “Let’s make history happen” in a campaign that has seen the code use behavioural scientists in an effort to get the message right.

The NRL is continuing with the History theme in 2017.

The campaign, which launches tomorrow after the official season launch today, will focus on drawing fans to the game to get the full experience of the code and will target the youth market in particular.

Peter Jarmain, general manager, marketing and brand, told Mumbrella the historic Grand Final win by Cronulla last year had set up the NRL perfectly to continue to tap into the history theme.

Jarmain said the decision to launch with a teaser a week ago featuring  people leaving their porch lights on was a link to Cronulla’s historic win last year – a win that validated the history campaign and allowed the NRL to use it as a link to the new season.

“It nicely sets us up for this year,” he said.

Archibald/Williams founder Bram Williams said the strategy sought to capitalise on the on-field action, but also highlight emerging players.

“We wanted to wrap that up with this unequalled sense of community and spirit around all different people, but younger people as well,” Williams said.

The campaign has also been developed to show off the diversity of the people who follow the sport and its inclusiveness.

The NRL has seen a 16% increase year-on-year for memberships and the gap the campaign now aims to address is bringing a younger audience to the NRL and to games.

“I think one audience that we need to sharpen our focus on is youth, and that applies to males and females,” Jarmain said.

“You will see some of those cues come out quite strongly. It’s not to say we want to walk away from our core audience, that is extremely important and they always will be but we do need to make sure Australian youth are engaged with our product.”

The campaign will also draw in the three highlight rounds of the year, the ANZAC round, indigenous round and the women’s round, while State of Origin will be marketed separately.

Jarmain said the campaign would come into its own as the finals approached.

“This is a great campaign for the finals, when you think about history defining moments,” he said.

Executive creative director Matt Gilmour said after last year’s History Happens campaign the new work was designed to be more inclusive of fans.

“It’s blurring that line a little more between the fans, members and players. It’s making fans and members feel like they have a role. It’s a call to action but it’s also a really inclusive way of talking.”

The new campaign has a heavy social media element, with the work evolving from putting fans “in the moment” last year to urging them to “share the moment” this year.

“We are not making up any new behaviour, this is behaviour that exists and this is how people hear about what you are up to,” Gilmour said.

The NRL has also put the campaign through  a heavy research process, including using behavioural scientists who have assessed the communications.

“It’s just looking at things like cognitive fluency, whether the message take out is clear, whether it leaves a positive feeling at the end,” Jarmain said.

The launch of the campaign comes ahead of the NRL taking an in depth look at its brand health, with Jarmain launching a project which will benchmark where the brand sits in coming months .

“We are just getting a base and going through a process of resetting our brand metrics … and then setting some KPIs around that.”

The new campaign will roll out on free to air and subscription TV and will be supported by a social media component

Andy Reynolds