Fallon's Exit Followed Clash With Wenner
NEW YORK-At least four agencies emerged last week for an assignment from Wenner Media. They are Arnold Communications in Boston, Mullen in Wenham, Mass., Carmichael Lynch in Minneapolis and GSD&M, Austin, Texas, sources said.
More shops may also be in the chase. Longtime incumbent Fallon McElligott, Minneapolis, and Wenner split earlier this month.
The speculative assignment requires a creative repositioning of Us magazine, but sources believe a win will lead to $2-4 million in tasks for Rolling Stone and Men's Journal. A decision is expected within the next few weeks, sources said.
Additional details surrounding Fallon's parting with the client also surfaced last week. In a tense meeting three months ago that included Wenner Media CEO Jann Wenner and David Lubars, co-president and creative director at Fallon, the agency presented ideas for both a trade and consumer campaign for Rolling Stone, sources said. "The trade campaign seemed on target, but the consumer campaign was way off," a source said.
As a result, the source said, "Jann just lit into [Lubars]." Wenner had suggested a concept for the consumer campaign, but the agency had done very little to expand on it. "They really underdelivered the consumer campaign. It was embarrassing," the source said. Neither Wenner or Lubars could not be reached for comment.
Wenner Media spent roughly $2 million on Rolling Stone in each of the last two years, per Competitive Media Reporting.
-with staff reports