Campaign Diary: Campaign man picks balls with star host in charity-agency tie-up

Much mirth in Belgrave Square on Monday afternoon when Nicholas Parsons, that urbane old super trouper, hosted the draw pairing agencies with charity clients as part of ITV’s Year of Promise.

Much mirth in Belgrave Square on Monday afternoon when Nicholas

Parsons, that urbane old super trouper, hosted the draw pairing agencies

with charity clients as part of ITV’s Year of Promise.



One of the ways the network is marking millennium year is to give a

leg-up to low-profile charities - those with annual incomes of just

pounds 12,000 - by getting agencies to make commercials for them to be

screened nationally as part of the programming on 1 May.



Using a machine looking like one of Camelot’s cast-offs, John Tylee,

Campaign’s associate editor, was given the job of drawing the balls at

the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising while adland’s finest

awaited their fate.



The man from Poulter Partners in Leeds put on a brave face at the

prospect of finding a USP for a charity battling to save endangered

plants. The CDP rep, doubtless recalling wet dreams of Baywatch babes,

was more upbeat about taking a brief from the Surf Life Saving

Association of Great Britain and the Swimming Teachers’ Association.



But as a marriage made in heaven, what better than McCann-Erickson

Central and the Basic Skills Agency, which helps those with literacy and

numeracy problems. ’Great,’ exclaimed the McCanns man, ’I’ve got half a

dozen creatives - they can get started on it right away.’



Parsons, meanwhile, declared himself perpetually fascinated by agency

initials. What, he asked Euro RSCG Wnek Gosper’s Vicky Jacobs, did RSCG

stand for? ’Dunno,’ she replied. ’I think they’re all dead!’



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