Nissan… Or Niece-an?; Actors Salute Restaurants in Cheeky Doordash Ad: Tuesday’s First Things First

Plus, a new free ad school for Black creatives

Headshot of Jess Zafarris

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The Name of Nissan’s New Car Comes From an Unlikely Source: A Marketing Exec’s Niece

Best aunt ever? Nissan marketing vp Allyson Witherspoon was able to name the automaker’s new electric SUV after her 7-year-old niece, Ariya. Witherspoon says the name means “noble” and “lioness,” making it a fitting name for a car she characterized as “an incredible amount of performance, power and technology, but in a very sleek design.” The Ariya is meant to compete with the few players that have introduced an all-electric SUV, including Tesla’s Model Y crossover.

Model name nepotism: It’s not the first time a vehicle has been named after a carmaker’s family member.

DoorDash Kicks Off Campaign to Remind People That Restaurants Are Still in Distress

DoorDash brought together six celebrities together for a funny spot that also sheds light on the very serious difficulties the restaurant industry continues to face due to the pandemic. Created with The Martin Agency, the “Without Restaurants” features a narrator who keeps trying to focus on the more sober message, while the celebs jump in to argue that supporting restaurants is all about helping actors. The celebrities, which include Luke Cage star Mike Colter, comedian George Lopez and Ming-Na Wen who voiced Mulan and stars in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., explain that they all got their starts in the restaurant industry.

Watch: Actor Tate Donovan of The O.C. and Disney’s Hercules also participated and directed the campaign.

  • Related: Doordash isn’t the only one injecting some levity into its marketing this week. U.K. McDonald’s locations are reopening for takeaway after an extended hiatus (offering only delivery and drive-through), and the brand compiled a joyous montage of brand enthusiasts celebrating their first meal in months, created with music selected through fan recommendations.

Spotify Creative Director Starts Free Ad School Exclusively for Black Students

Some portfolio programs charge tens of thousands of dollars, which can present a barrier to low-income and minority creatives looking to break into the ad industry. Spotify creative director Oriel Davis-Lyons is aiming to level the playing field for Black creatives seeking to advance their careers—and it’s backed by The One Club for Creativity. The One School is a free, 16-week online program that will accept 15 students for its first class beginning in September.

Shifting the culture: “It’s about representation—being able to see yourself in five, 10, or 15 years and see a path that you can follow,” Davis-Lyons said.

Brands Respond to Consumer Demand for Sustainability

DTC personal care brand Native found that consumer requests for plastic-free packaging increased by 900% over the past year. In response, the brand unveiled paper-based deodorant applicators this summer and committed to ridding plastic from all its packages by 2023. [See them here.]

Bottled water company Crystal Geyser is also aiming to reduce plastics—though in part because it has a troubled history with sustainability. After the brand’s manufacturer admitted to illegally storing and transporting arsenic-filled wastewater to its treatment plants, the company commissioned a consumer survey about recycled materials and the recycling process to educate itself and the public. The survey was released alongside the brand’s first 360-degree integrated campaign and a new initiative that will ultimately aim to shift its bottling to 100% “infinitely recyclable” plastics. [Watch the campaign here.]

More of Today’s Top News and Highlights

Apple’s New Ads Capture the Creative Processes of James Blake, Samin Nosrat and More

Apple launched a new series of ads from TBWA\Media Arts Lab in the Behind the Mac campaign, diving into the creative processes of musician James Blake, photographer Tyler Mitchell, cookbook author and TV host Samin Nosrat, and architect Zhang Xi.

@JessZafarris Jess Zafarris is an audience engagement editor at Adweek.