CLOSE-UP: CLIENT OF THE WEEK; Beer man with get up and go

John Smith’s chief is calm after two upheavals on his account.

John Smith’s chief is calm after two upheavals on his account.

Jerry Goldberg had a turbulent few months last year. First BMP DDB

resigned the Courage account - ending a 23-year relationship. Then in

August Courage itself was snapped up by the rival brewer, Scottish and


As the marketing controller at Courage in charge of its John Smith’s

brand, Goldberg was deeply affected by both changes.

Goldberg, who dubs himself the ‘ultimate survivor’, weathered the merger

and this April left his home in Surrey to join the newly merged Scottish

Courage’s Edinburgh headquarters, where he now works on brands including

John Smith’s and Courage Best.

Goldberg, 32, is in a chirpy mood. This week GGT’s first film for John

Smith’s hits the nation’s TV screens (Campaign, last week). ‘When BMP

resigned the business it was a shock, totally out of the blue,’ Goldberg

explains. ‘But as it turned out, it’s been no where near as tricky as it

could have been. After a month we knew it would work with GGT. It was

clear the guys there understood the brand.’

GGT’s first attempt retains Jack Dee, a mandatory ‘fixed point’, but

dumps the penguins. But (surprise, surprise) Dee’s feathered friends

make a triumphant return in the second GGT ad.

Goldberg enjoys working with a brand with a strong advertising heritage.

‘In marketing it’s very difficult to get tangible returns for what you

put in. A good ad gives you results,’ he adds.

With that, Goldberg proudly reveals the latest brand statistics for John

Smith’s. A year ago, he states, it was trailing the market leader,

Tetley. Now it has overtaken Tetley, taking an 11.9 per cent share of

the market.

Goldberg, a maths and physics graduate, is delighted with his career in

beer. As part of his job he is forced to take part in regular beer-

testing sessions - strictly for research purposes, of course.

But does he regret anything about his move to Scotland? Well, yes.

Goldberg misses Saturday football with his Surrey team - he has yet to

find an Edinburgh club prepared to take him on.

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