Will ya look at that, pigs flying at the Philadelphia Inquirer building! Oink-flap Oink-flap Oink-flap! Quicktime video of the phenomenon inside. We knew something was up, what with the ice-cap in hell and Paris Hilton facing jail, but I was betting on raining frogs before flying pigs.

The campaign was developed by Gyro Worldwide and the projections were produced by Klip Collective. The press release explains:

The Philadelphia Inquirer is one of only four major metropolitan dailies in the US that posted a gain in circulation– and to celebrate, Philadelphia advertising agency Gyro Worldwide has developed a campaign to help them spread the good news with some much needed personality and a dose of optimism in an industry that has been down on itself for quite some time.

When Knight Ridder sold the paper to a consortium of local investors known as Philadelphia Media Holdings L.L.C. last year, many doubted whether the new owners could reverse the papers downward spiral of falling revenues, fading morale and shrinking circulation. According to the latest findings from Audit Bureau of Circulation (released last week), the Philadelphia Inquirer, Sunday Inquirer and Philadelphia Daily News now reach 2,249,703, an increase of 3% or 63,000 readers. Philly.com has also grown its page views by more than 40%.

Brian P. Tierney, Chief Executive Officer of Philadelphia Media Holdings, and publisher of The Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News, announced, "Some said that pigs would fly or hell would freeze over before we could increase newspaper circulation and readership. I am proud that we have proven them wrong."

Gyro took this statement and decided to have a little fun with it...and developed the "When Pigs Fly" campaign. The newspaper will announce their new ranking with a 4-page insert and two full-page ads due to begin running Friday, May 4th for two weeks. There are also three :60 radio spots to round out the media mix.

The most exciting component of the campaign, though, is a video installment of flying pigs onto the Philadelphia Inquirer building at 400 North Broad Street beginning the evening of Thursday, May 3rd and continuing through the evening of Saturday, May 5th.

These elaborate pigs flying stories will also be used on Philly.com (the official website of the Philadelphia Inquirer and Philadelphia Daily News) and Gyro will be producing viral films of the pigs flying projections (by Philadelphia's Klip Collective).

"What makes this campaign really work is how elaborate the whole thing is," says Steven Grasse, Gyro founder and CEO. "When pigs fly is a dreadfully overused cliché, but we've taken it totally over the top, so it works. We use the medium to its fullest – having fun with newspapers to sell newspapers."

"We're celebrating The Inquirer doing what so many people said was impossible – gaining readers in a digital world," says Grasse. "And with so much talk about newspapers becoming locally owned – like the Inquirer - instead of a segment of an enormous corporate media conglomerate, this is a story that just keeps getting bigger."


about the author

Dabitch Creative Director, CEO, hell-raising sweetheart and editor of Adland. Globetrotting Swede who has lived and worked in New York, London, San Francisco, Amsterdam, Copenhagen and Stockholm.

Comments (2)

  • Allan1's picture

    Nice to see my hometown paper doing something creative :-)
    A good cliché overuse.

    Of course, considering the number of murders so far this year in Philadelphia*, the flying pigs are rather irrelevant....

    May 08, 2007