The Viral Factory Brings Glenn Sanders Aboard as Creative Director

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SANTA MONICA, CA, July 18, 2008 - With offices in the US and UK, digital marketing and media agency The Viral Factory has hired award-winning interactive copywriter and creative director Glenn Sanders. Sanders will serve as Creative Director for the agency, and will be based out of its Santa Monica, CA, office. Most recently, Sanders was Associate Creative Director at TBWA\Chiat\Day\Tequila on the Infiniti automotive account. He managed a team of interactive art directors, copywriters and designers, and oversaw the development of a groundbreaking kiosk using cutting-edge "augmented reality" technology to allow consumers to interact in real time with 3D animations of Infiniti vehicles. "While at Tequila, I worked closely with The Viral Factory on several campaigns," Sanders recalled, "and the impact they had on our endeavors was powerful. So I'm extremely excited to be joining forces with them in this capacity." At The Viral Factory, Sanders will focus on fortifying the creative infrastructure and process, and expanding their interactive capabilities. "The Viral Factory already has tremendous knowledge and experience. As someone who's seen the value and reach of viral marketing from the agency perspective, part of my role is to help agencies and clients understand that they can successfully answer the needs and story of their brands by taking a more offbeat approach." Sanders joined Tequila\Los Angeles in 2004, where he was copywriter for brands such as PlayStation, Nissan, and Infiniti. He has worked on wide spectrum of interactive work; banner ads, microsites, blogs, viral videos, minigames, screensavers, and even the world's first virtual cat; and, in a limited capacity, on more traditional content for print and broadcast. Most notable may be his efforts on PlayStation, which included co-creating and writing a staggering amount of content for the complex viral campaign known as "Giantology," a collaboration with The Viral Factory, in which a blogger discovers video and photographic evidence of giants hidden in various sites around the web, all to promote the game "Shadow of the Colossus." Other projects included the web-based reality series "SOCOM Hell Week," a parody of western movies filmed with live chimps, and an epic viral video in which 50 "live action role players" waged a fake war dressed as Greek Gods. Sanders' projects earned the agency a series of awards and accolades, including a Grand Effie, One Show Pencil, Yahoo! Big Ideas Chair, and the first Beldings Sweepstakes Bowl awarded to an interactive campaign. "We are thrilled to welcome Glenn to The Viral Factory," stated TVF Senior Partner Don Block. "We have been intrigued by the notion of inviting Glenn to join our company ever since our successful collaborations at Tequila, and the timing was right to act on that, given our rapid growth. Glenn not only has a natural instinct for viral marketing executions, but also brings a deep knowledge of other forms of online marketing and content development. We expect that his past experience in leading major brands into new online marketing frontiers will help The Viral Factory's current and future clients recognize the true potential of Viral Marketing campaigns." Sanders pointed out that as brands face huge changes in the way consumers accept (and sometimes reject) marketing messages, the time has come for viral to be viewed more as an ongoing part of their marketing plan - as an agency of record - and less as a one-off, hit-or-miss experiment. "People no longer have to watch ads on TV, and are getting their information from the web instead of print publications. As a result, brands are looking beyond traditional advertising because the public isn't paying as much attention anymore. Viral is a way to connect with people on a more personal level. And it doesn't have to resort to shock value to be effective. As a creative, it's exciting to work on projects that have fewer restrictions, but the science of viral justifies the liberties we take. Viral allows for more strategies and methods than other types of advertising, and the results are measurable." Stressing that effective viral marketing comes down to a good story, Sanders cited storytelling as his original inspiration for entering the advertising industry. For him, viral has proven a most effective outlet in that regard. "It's easier to tell compelling stories about brands and products when you can play with format and execution," he concluded. "If we develop stories based on the central question, 'who's the audience?' - as opposed to 'who's the client? ' - we can draw the viewer in rather than invading their space. And that's the ultimate goal of viral marketing."