When The New Age launched late last year, media pundits were sceptical – particularly in these recession-hit times – that the new paper on the block would manage to get the advertising it would need to stay afloat. Newspapers, generally, they said, were suffering. Readership was down, almost across the board, and many expressed doubts that brand and retail advertisers would support the Gupta-funded paper.
Publishers took note when the paper decided to break the ‘rules’ of newspaper design by placing an advert for Game above its masthead. When TheMediaOnline ran the story, it aroused much comment with publishers applauding the move. Tough times need innovative solutions, they said. Designers, on the other hand, almost unanimously decried the ad. ‘Dog’s breakfast’, they said.
The New Age was unrepentant. The client had paid a premium for the position and a start up could not afford to be fussy. CEO Nazeem Howa told TheMediaOnline that thepaper’s “primary sales pitch remains to offer advertisers an opportunity to go beyond the conventional block advertising and to provide creative executions that enhances responses to their advertisers”.
Now they’ve done it again, with what Howa calls a “creative execution” for major cellphone company, Cell C. The ad shows a ‘word cloud’ streaming across the page into the a CellC ‘the power is in your hands’ block.
What will the pundits say this time?