Nine things PR pros need to know on Wednesday morning, 3.11.2015

Mattel shifts Hot Wheels, Barbie accounts from Ketchum to Golin; The Pepsi Challenge is back; BBC suspends 'Top Gear' host.

1. Big account news: Golin has won US media relations duties for Mattel’s Barbie and Hot Wheels brands after a review process. Ketchum, which took home a Bronze Lion last year at Cannes for its work on the #Unapologetic campaign for Barbie, was the incumbent on both accounts.

2. The Pepsi Challenge is back, but this time with celebrity and social responsibility elements instead of taste tests. The soft-drink brand has enlisted Usher, Serena Williams, and Usain Bolt as brand ambassadors for the effort.

3. The BBC has suspended Top Gear host Jeremy Clarkson after a reported physical altercation with a producer, and the network could cancel the rest of the series. Many viewers aren’t happy. #BringBackClarkson trended on Twitter on Wednesday morning.


4. YouTube will introduce a tool on Wednesday to help marketers better target Hispanic audiences. Last month, the site also launched an app with content for children.

5. Women’s group UltraViolet is encouraging consumers to ditch shopping at Target for Walmart after the Minneapolis-based retailer refused to raise wages for workers. Walmart boosted employees’ salaries last month, as did TJ Maxx and Marshalls.


6. The controversy over Hillary Clinton’s use of a personal email account while serving as secretary of state is far from over, say experts, especially after she explained on Tuesday that she deleted thousands of messages on a private server.


7. Two University of Oklahoma fraternity brothers caught on video singing a racist chant have apologized for their actions. The school has cut all ties with the frat.

8. The letter sent by 47 senators to Iran’s leadership essentially saying it should forego negotiations with the Obama administration isn’t popular in diplomatic circles, but it is paying well on the Republican campaign trail, with other candidates quickly joining their position. (Here’s how to tell who’s winning the GOP fundraising race, based on various metrics, courtesy of The Upshot).

9. The city manager of Ferguson, Missouri, has resigned after a scathing Justice Department report that showed police disproportionately targeted black residents there. He denied ordering officers to single out African-Americans.

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