Telegraph set to drop £6m ‘bestseller’ ads amid cull

The future of The Daily Telegraph’s £6m “Read a Bestseller” branding campaign is in doubt, following the departure of the newspaper’s marketing chief, Mark Dixon.

Dixon, with advertising agency Clemmow Hornby Inge (CHI) and strategist Naked Inside, developed the branding campaign using the strapline “Read a Bestseller Every Day”. The campaign was launched in March, with heavyweight television and outdoor advertising.

The Telegraph’s clear-out of a layer of senior management last Friday claimed the heads of Dixon, group sales director Chris White-Smith and commercial director Mark Payne. EMAP Advertising managing director Dave King has been appointed executive director, joining John Allwood, also recently appointed as an executive director.

The changes follow the acquisition of the Telegraph Group by Sir Frederick and Sir David Barclay in August.

The aim of the Read a Bestseller campaign was to reach a younger and more urban market. The initial TV ads featured movie star Michael Madsen and England rugby player Matt Dawson.

Dixon appointed CHI to the Telegraph advertising account in December 2001. Earlier this year, he appointed Universal McCann to handle media buying after MindShare resigned the account, following the hiving-off of planning to Naked Inside (MW January 22).

Marketing is now handled by marketing manager Lucy Woodhouse, but Dixon is expected to be replaced soon. A spokeswoman for the paper says that the Read a Bestseller campaign will “continue for the moment”. However, observers expect it to be killed off shortly.

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