Campaign: Second Opinion

Nina Wheeler, owner of Brazen PR, has worked on campaigns for Hasbro brands such as Monopoly, Cluedo, Trivial Pursuit and Action Man.

Norton's campaign for Bratz was high profile - most people in the industry can recall the Barbie v Bratz debate in the media. The question, however, is whether it was creative and original, or just a timely reaction to the much bigger story of Barbie's demise.

Norton's design competition with Nickelodeon was on target, and running promotions in titles such as Girl Talk and Mizz was the obvious thing to do - but these are all bread and butter PR tactics: nothing new or original there.

The real media story was the declining sales of Barbie after 44 years at the top. Coverage often focused on the Barbie story and mentioned the rise of Bratz as a challenger brand second. Still, Norton's tactical media relations were well executed, as was its decision to make Vivid's chief executive available for comment.

But what about non-media routes? Live activity such as sampling, sponsorship, on-street theatre, shows, concerts, events, shopping-centre tours and viral campaigns should have all been considered.

Norton's campaign achieved its objectives and was a success, so the client should be very happy (which is what really counts).

But it lacked creative spark and ingenuity. Norton should let its imagination run wild in 2005.

Creativity: 2

Delivery: 5

7 out of 10

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