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Masters of the Mo – Our Tribute to Movember

As we are well into the sunny month of November we thought it more than fitting that we show our support to all the Mo Bros out there doing it tough, wearing bum fluff out in public.

Social has been an extremely powerful tool for the Movember campaign, with a wave of mo posting (mosting?) driving awareness into the stratosphere. Just a few quick figures for you:

  • There are currently 1,125,817 Instagram posts using the hashtag #Movember.
  • In the past 30 days, 171,008 tweets have used the word “Movember”. That’s an average of 5,700 tweets per day!
  • There are almost 70,000 news articles mentioning Movember!

And remember, there are still 2 weeks to go.

We always love to support a great cause, like Movember, which raises funds for men’s cancers and mental health, so have pulled together a little tribute to the mo.

Here are Circul8’s pick of the top 5 best mo’s of ALL TIME.

Frankly my dear, that mo is spectacular.

Screen Shot 2014-11-14 at 10.14.00 am

2. Salvador Dalí was a mo man made for the internet – he even had a cat!

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3. Mo mime.

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4. Magnum P.I, Monica’s bf Richard… wherever you know Tom Selleck from, you know he has an epic moustache.

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5. We love Ron Burgundy’s mo almost as much as he loves scotch… Scotchy, scotch, scotch.

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So there you have it: history’s best moustaches. Let us know if you agree!

And do show some support and donate to the mo-tastic cause that is Movember:

Images via:


Welcome Evan!

We’re overjoyed to welcome Evan Clements to the team, who is taking the mantle as Circul8’s new Senior Digital Producer.

After a brief stint in London, Evan has spent the past 10 years in Sydney producing at some of the world’s largest agency networks, including Isobar, Tequila, Droga5 and Havas, for clients such as Tourism Australia, HSBC, Hyundai, NAB trade, ANZ, Domain, Woolworths and Defence Force Recruiting. While at Tequila, Evan worked on the global award-winning ‘Car Creation’ campaign for NRMA.

Evan grew up on the North Coast of NSW, and despite only getting his first email address aged 19 while studying at CSU Mitchell, Evan has a mind hotwired for digital, and is constantly inspired by an ever-evolving industry.

We’re very pleased to welcome him aboard! Feel free to say hi at



Is Ello goodbye? What ad-free ‘Ello’ means for advertisers

Photo via Espen Sundve

Say ‘ello to Ello – the Internet’s ad-free answer to Facebook and social media networks in general. Brainchild of Paul Budnitz, graphic designers Berger & Fohr and creative collective Mode Set, Ello is appropriately cockney in its ‘up-yours’ stance against advertising and data collection of all stripes.

As stated in Ello’s manifesto:

“We believe a social network can be a tool for empowerment. Not a tool to deceive, coerce and manipulate – but a place to connect, create and celebrate life. You are not a product.”

Or as comedian Bill Hicks put it, “That anti-marketing dollar? That’s a good market.”

The cynic in us however can’t help but note the revelations in anti-corporate writer, Aral Balkan’s recent article entitled “Ello, Goodbye” that Ello’s founders accepted $435,000 in seed funding from FreshTracks Capital, a left-wing Vermont-based Venture Capital firm, back in March this year.

As Baklan writes:

“If a company has taken venture capital, you have already been sold. It’s not a matter of if, it’s simply a matter of when. (Unless the company goes under before it can exit, that is.)”

This seems to undermine Ello’s core proposition, because when you accept venture capital, investors have an exit ready.

But for all intents and purposes, Ello’s anti-marketing marketing is working.

While the network has been in beta for just over a year, in just under a week Ello has travelled at the speed of viral, receiving up to 45,000 requests per hour for new accounts to be made – so many that their servers crashed.

It’s a powerful statement being made here, one we hear often: People definitely don’t like ads. At least not the sort of tactless ads which invade your newsfeed for the apparent sole purpose of insulting your intelligence.

For advertisers, it’s a wake up call. That the same tactics won’t work. That when it comes to digital, the rules change.

Many agencies seem to apply carry-over logic from a pre-digital age when communications were largely interruptive. Now, we have to be thinking harder and smarter. It isn’t so much about the single message anymore, it’s more about creating a whole mutually beneficial ecosystem or platform around that single message.

As an industry, we talk a lot about integrated campaigns. What we really need are integrative campaigns, campaigns which are genuinely purposeful – functional, not disruptive. Or in other words, we need to make things which add to people’s lives, not detract from them.

Ello says many things, some of them conflicting, some of them innocuous. But one thing its almost universal uptake does say to advertisers is: innovate.

Written by Mark Starmach


Changi takes off!

Connect via Changi

Circul8 is proud to announce the launch of our latest campaign for Changi Airport Group Singapore, called ‘Connect Via Changi’.

Visitors to the campaign website ( stand the chance to win S$10,000 to spend at Changi Airport by creating their very own Changi banknote. Included in the prize are 2 return flights through Changi to a destination in Asia of the winner’s choosing.

This is the first phase of a 6-month campaign designed to introduce Australian consumers to the Changi Transit Programme, through which Singapore Airlines and SilkAir passengers transiting at Changi Airport are automatically entitled to S$40 in vouchers to spend on either leg of their journey.


The programme is a key point of difference for Changi Airport, and a viable strategy to further bolster Changi’s position as South-East Asia’s most popular transit hub.

Please stay seated until the seatbelt light turns off – more of this campaign is coming soon.


The iPhone 6 Plus bent into various yoga poses

The new iPhone 6 Plus ‘phablet’, measuring in at a staggeringly clown-pocket-sized 16cm long, has a little known feature which the Internet recently guaranteed everybody in the civilised world knows about. It bends.

Historically, ergonomics have been a principle of solid product design – but we think this may be an inch (or 4.7 to be precise) too far.

But while the iPhone 6 Plus’s added flexibility isn’t ideal for consumers – it’ll do wonders for the phone itself.

To demonstrate, we’ve taken a decidedly Surry Hills response to bring you a series of silly pictures of the iPhone 6 Plus bent into various yoga poses. Breathe in – class has begun…



iPhone6_Yoga_2 iPhone6_Yoga_3 iPhone6_Yoga_4 iPhone6_Yoga_5


And breathe out.

Until next year’s iPhone release – namaste, grasshoppers.


Circul8 Welcomes a New Client

If you’ve ever flown through Singapore on business (or pleasure), chances are you’ve crossed paths with our newest client. That’s right – we’ve been appointed as the Australian digital and social media agency for the Changi Airport Group.

Spacious, luxurious, clean and refined – Changi Airport Singapore is one of the busiest transport hubs in South East Asia, and with plenty of activities and facilities, it’s probably the best place in the world to miss your flight. See our ‘research’ piece from our trip to Singapore below…

We have some exciting campaigns from Changi launching very soon. Stay tuned!


Status Check: How You Can Save a Friend by Checking Their Facebook

 Screen Shot 2014-08-28 at 10.19.39 AMThis is one of the last images post to Robin Williams’ Instagram account before his passing

What resurfaced recently in the wake of Robin Williams’ suicide is a truth beat into us, but whose implications are all too often ignored – depression doesn’t discriminate.

It can affect anyone, at any stage of their life. Certain segments of the population are more at-risk – young adults seem more susceptible than others – but no one is immune.

There is no single reason it happens either. For some it’s a series of shitty circumstances. For some it’s changes in the brain or prolonged sickness. For others, it’s nothing at all. There is no starting gun – you only know it’s happening once it is. And there’s no tape at the end to tell you when it’s over.

Depression just happens, as the author of this post can personally testify. And it’s that exact ambiguity which makes it so scary.

Equally scary is the fact that there is undoubtedly someone on your Facebook friends list right now who is stuck inside that terrifying ambiguity. About 15% of Australians suffer from a form of depression. That’s 3 in every 20.

This is a post about how to help.

rrThe last image post to Robin Williams’ Instagram. Williams and his daughter, Zelda.

Look closer

Perhaps the most frequent way depression presents itself is in absence. The urge to retreat, become reclusive and socially withdrawn is a large part of depression’s pull. In that regard, your friends’ social media profiles can be a particularly powerful diagnostic tool.

That is, only if you’re looking closer – the very nature of social media means that your newsfeed won’t show when someone posts ‘nothing’. The first step is to go through your friends list and open the profiles of people you haven’t heard from in a while. Start from the bottom and work your way up.

If you notice your friend’s activity has bottomed out over the course of a few weeks or months, or is very minimal, it could be for many reasons, one of which may be depression.



Is there a change?

Silence is not the only warning sign. It’s more one type of a much broader behaviour – a change from the norm.

We all have that person who overshares on social media. But have they kept inexplicably quiet for a bit now? What about that friend who always used to post pics from music festivals, clubbing nights or get-togethers? Have they been posting a lot of pictures taken from home? Or predominantly text-only posts?

It’s noticeable when normally extroverted people become relatively introverted, but it’s important not to ignore the opposite. Some naturally introverted sufferers swing the other way, and overcompensate for their social withdrawal by doubling their social media efforts. Are they reminiscing a lot more than usual? Liking? Commenting?

We all change over time – that’s undeniable. However, the difference between healthy changes and unhealthy ones is hard to parse from afar. None of these are sure-fire ways to tell if your friends are experiencing depression. Only you can really tell.



 Say hi

I want to preface this next bit by saying, I’m not a doctor. I’m not a clinician. I’m not a psychiatrist – I’m a copywriter. I’m a human. That’s it.

For professional advice, please refer to one of the organisations listed at the bottom of this article. You should probably do that regardless.

But as a human, I do feel qualified to offer this piece of advice. If you think, or even just suspect, that someone you know on your friends list could be depressed – say hi.

Send them a private message. Don’t make depression the leading question, because it might be the case that everything’s fine. Just say something along the lines of,

“Hey, how’re you going? Haven’t heard from you in a while.”

Or tag them in something to make them smile. A status update. An old picture. A Buzzfeed list. Anything.

At worst (if you can call it ‘worst’), you’ll have a little idle chitchat with a distant mate. At best, your single act of outreach could mean the world to someone who is right now feeling desperately and impossibly alone.

And it might light up that tape at the finish.



Support and information is available for the distressed or those requiring assistance online regarding mental health issues at Lifeline, beyondblue, Reach Out Australia and Headspace or by calling Lifeline on 131 114, Mensline on 1300 789 978, the Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467 and Kids Helpline on 1800 551 800.

By Mark Starmach


The 8 Most Noteworthy ALS Ice Bucket Challenge Videos

If you haven’t heard of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge by now, allow us to thaw you out of the ice age and welcome you to a new one.

The premise is simple enough – pour a bucket of ice water over your head and nominate some mates to do the same in 24 hours or less.

And in doing so, raise funds for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) research. The crippling disease is known as motor neurone disease (MND) here in Australia, and is characterised by the onset of muscle atrophy across the entire body – first in the extremities, then toward the core and vital organs.

To date, the Ice Bucket Challenge has raised $55 million for ALS research in the US, and countless more in earned media. Locally, MND Australia has received more than $110,000 in donations, as compared to $12,000 for the same period last year.

Now, let’s take a look at 8 of the most noteworthy Ice Bucket Challenge (IBC) videos to flood front lawns, driveways and social media networks alike, all around the world.

1. Buckets of water are heavy, as Connor Riley discovered.

2. A mistake which wasn’t repeated by banana man.

3. …Or the ever-innovative Bill Gates.

4. …Or Jamie Oliver.

5. Samsung Galaxy S5 also participated, showing off its waterproof design in the process…

6. Regional newsreader Lincoln Humphries used his nomination to promote other (very) worthy causes.

7. Patrick Stewart did his with trademark class.

8. Jeremy Clarkson’s was strangely satisfying, as he unwittingly participated…

…And while it mightn’t have gotten as much coverage as other Ice Bucket Challenges on this list, Katrina Jeffery and several other locals who’s loved ones suffer from motor neurone disease (ALS), staged their own event in Lismore, far north NSW.  See the video here.

Which just goes to show, no matter how big or how small you are, when it comes to diseases like MND, challenges like the Ice Bucket Challenge can give many who feel like they can’t do anything, the means to do something for the sufferers who can’t.

Please consider donating to MND Australia.

RELATED: Nominations: From Indulgence to Charity


Snapchat’s Totally (un)Expected Announcement

This shouldn’t come as a shock, at least not at first. Creative messaging app, Snapchat, is reportedly working up a service called ‘Snapchat Discovery’, which will soon allow users of the platform to ‘discover’ marketer’s content.

Or in short, Snapchat’s getting ads.

There’s tonnes of brands who already have Snapchat accounts and are using them well, to send their followers snaps, teasers, exclusive content and promo codes.

But Snapchat Discovery will be different in that it will allow marketers to target disposable ad messages to users of a specific demographic on a naturally disposable medium. Never will that elusive ‘Gen Z’ audience be easier to channel.

What’s odd is the timing of this announcement and the form these ads will take. Snapchat was valued at $10 billion during investment talks with Alibaba Group in June, and active users have more than doubled in just under a year. This is pure conjecture here, but could Snapchat’s CEO Evan Spiegel be preparing to sell the platform?


This suspicion seems to gain some quantity when considering the quite brazen form these ads will take. For a particularly ad-adverse audience, the way Snapchat Discovery has been pitched, and is set to be integrated with the app, isn’t particularly delicate. Backlash and mass abandonment could be considerable.

We’ll provide more commentary as more details appear. Until then, we just hope Snapchat doesn’t become a ghost of its former self.

RELATED: Are All Social Media Platforms Looking the Same?
RELATED: Don’t Be Spooked: Why Snapchat Works For Brands


Facebook Makes 62% of Ad Money from Mobile

Only two years after Facebook debuted its first mobile ads and adopted a mobile first strategy, earlier this week they announced that their once-struggling mobile business now accounts for 62% of all advertising revenues, reinforcing the fact that Facebook is quickly becoming largely a mobile company.

“We had a good second quarter” said Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s CEO, vastly underplaying the $2.91 billion revenue Facebook earned in the quarter ending 30th June. (This is an increase of 61% over the $1.81 billion reported in the same quarter last year.)

Mobile advertising accounted for $2.68 billion of this $2.91 billion spend, showing how powerful mobile advertising is, and an opportunity Facebook is grabbing hold of with both hands. (Also worthy to note that two of Facebook’s largest acquisitions, Instagram and WhatsApp are mobile apps. We’re interested to see Instagram adverts coming soon.)

With 1.5 million active advertisers on the site and Cheryl Sandberg (Facebook’s Chief Operating Officer) reporting  “We’re seeing our existing advertisers spend more and we’re seeing new people come on to the platform,” it’s more important than ever to be clever and tactical with your Facebook advertising, to stand out from the clutter to reach your target audience successfully. And with mobile being at the forefront on our users’ minds, the need to create adverts that appeal to our consumers, (often with their smartphones glued  to their hands) is more important than ever!

Unexpectedly a large percentage of users check Facebook daily on their tablets or smartphones, with Facebook reporting 1.07 billion mobile users and 829 million general daily users. In fact 30% of Facebook’s monthly users only check Facebook on their mobile devices.

That’s a heck of a lot of Facebook addicts! Though Zuckerberg may not agree. He stated that people spend 9 hours a day on digital media, but less than an hour on Facebook “One thing that’s exciting is there is still so much room to grow.”

Zuckerberg’s obviously not been to the Circul8 office where we spend approximately 15 hours a day on the channel! 😉

Interested to discover more about Facebook’s latest earnings and reports? Read more

Written by Rosie Apps