Jackhammer, Atomic Are Skating on Air

By Steve Krajewski

DALLAS–A cold call placed by Jackhammer principal Todd Tilford has paid dividends with in-line skate manufacturer Oxygen, which selected the Dallas agency from an undisclosed pool of international shops to handle its creative account.

Matt Titus, marketing director in the U.S. for Oxygen, a division of Atomic Austria GmbH in Altenmarkt, Austria, confirmed Jackhammer’s selection last week. Billings for the international creative assignment were undisclosed, though Oxygen spends less than $1 million on U.S. media.

Titus said he received an unsolicited call from Tilford several months ago and agreed to meet with him because Atomic’s international brand group was looking for an agency to handle advertising for its in-line skates and snowboards.

‘We met, and I liked Jackhammer’s work and the massive capabilities it had (through its affiliation) with The Richards Group,’ Titus said.

Atomic executives brought their agency recommendations to a meeting, and Titus said he proposed Jackhammer. In the end, Titus said, ‘the international brand group decided we wanted a U.S. agency.’ Oxygen continues to handle media buying internally.

Tilford said Jackhammer has already developed a series of three ads, with additional executions scheduled to break soon. The ads will run in the U.S. and will also be made available for translation internationally.

Jackhammer’s first ads feature muted colors and type that has an ice-like appearance. One ad carries the headline, ‘The laws of physics dictate that stationary objects tend to stay that way.’ The type hovers over juxtaposed photos of an empty recliner and people using Oxygen skates. A second ad features a gun target combined with similar action photos and the headline, ‘Old age has its sights set on everyone. It’s just harder to hit a moving target.’

Another version uses the headline, ‘Life is like water. Once it gets stagnant, it begins to stink.’ Each ad features body copy plugging the new ATV skate, referred to as ‘an urban assault vehicle.’ Titus said the ads are running in mainstream magazines like Shape and Outside, alternative titles like Box and Daily Bread, as well as other regional publications.

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