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Multimedia Recruitment Effort For Thomson Tries the Unexpected

A recruitment campaign created by Austin Knight for Thomson Financial Services uses a wide variety of venues and the headline: “Exactly what you never expected.”
Recognizing that unemployment rates are low and traditional “Help Wanted” ads do not have the drawing power they once did, the company decided to pursue alternative methods of advertising, said Austin Knight account manager Jessica Gatti.
“The gainfully employed job seeker is not opening the classified ads, but they are doing everyday type of activities like riding the bus, traveling to and from work and family and surfing various [Web] sites,” Gatti said.
According to Austin Knight copywriter John Kenney, the effort targets much-sought-after, technologically savvy workers. “They’re extremely in demand, and they know they’re in demand,” Kenney said.
A billboard created by the Boston shop shows a grinning young man strapped headfirst to the nose of an F-14 jet fighter. The company’s Web address (www.jobsontheedge.com) is prominently featured.
Amplifying the youthful, edgy tone of the billboard, the Web site itself touts Thomson as “programming paradise. And hardware heaven.” The copy continues, “In today’s suit-and-tie-wearing world of financial services, it’s hard to find such happiness. Unless you’re looking at Thomson Financial Services.”
Also being used for promotion is a public bus, with all its surfaces covered with Thompson ad graphics. In addition, the client is launching a newspaper recruitment effort on March 8, running a full-page ad in The Boston Globe, Gatti said.
“It’s a culture that you wouldn’t expect from a financial company,” said creative director Mary Kunkel Fox. “We’re trying to drive people to the Web [and] create some kind of curiosity about Thomson.”
The Boston-based company has worked with Austin Knight for the past three years. The 23-person shop also creates recruitment advertising for such clients as Marshalls, Bay Networks, T.J. Maxx and the Rhode Island School of Design.