Recruitment Blues

It must be hard to make the Army sound appealing these days. At least, that’s what some top ad agencies so rudely found out today.

In a blow to six agencies that have spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to pitch the U.S. Army for its advertising account, the government today canceled the long-running review…

The government had originally intended to announce a review winner last December, but decided to delay the award for six months. Executives familiar with the matter said the Army today told agenices that “at this time, Government anticipates re-soliciting for the ‘U.S. Army Recruiting and Advertising’ program,” in a fax distributed to the contenders…

Calls to the Army were not returned at press time.

A review, as you probably gather, is when a client invites several agencies, usually including the one they’ve already got, to take a fresh shot at things. Yours truly, and most freelancers, avoid such shenanigans, in which agencies give up their best ideas on spec.

Anyway, it’s interesting that some of the biggest names in the biz (the article goes on to list them) couldn’t come up with anything the Army thought would help them. Maybe it goes back to the old truism that even a great ad can’t sell a bad product.


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