Adweek’s Sustainability Coverage; Ikea’s Powerful Ad; Weather Data Is King: Monday’s First Things First

Plus, why Marriott is becoming a media company

Two dogs awaiting adoption form a bond that can't easily be broken in Ikea Greece's new ad. Ikea Greece

Welcome to First Things First, Adweek’s new daily resource for marketers. We’ll be publishing the content to First Things First on each morning (like this post), but if you prefer that it come straight to your inbox, you can sign up for the email here.

Adweek Is Devoting a Week to Covering Sustainability

In the lead-up to the UN Climate Action Summit on Sept. 23, Adweek will publish a series of stories each day this week that highlights the different ways in which climate change and sustainability intersect with the advertising, marketing and media world.

For example, many major shoe brands have followed the lead of challenger brands like Rothy’s and Allbirds to create sneakers out of recycled plastics. And at Cannes, the group Extinction Rebellion made headlines with protests during the ad industry’s most visible event.

In total, Adweek will run 20 stories as part of our coverage, which can be found at

Adweek is joining more than 250 publications worldwide that have committed to covering climate change this week. The Covering Climate Now initiative is the brainchild of the Columbia Journalism Review, The Guardian and The Nation, and includes publishers like Variety, Vice and Teen Vogue, as well as newspapers from over a dozen countries on every continent (except Antarctica).

This Week’s Cover Story: Why Brands Suddenly Love Weather Data

There are plenty of obvious ways that weather affects consumer habits—ice cream lovers are naturally going to get a scoop on hot days. By combining weather data and AI, the less obvious connections between weather and consumer patterns are becoming clearer. Here are some examples:

  • An air filter company knows how pollen levels influence sales and can alter its marketing as a result.
  • When it’s humid out, will New Yorkers drink hot or cold coffee? Surprisingly, they want a hot cup.
  • Floridians buy theme park tickets on rainy days (perhaps to avoid tourists).

Read more: Learn about the power of AI and weather data in Patrick Kulp’s cover story.

Who Isn’t a Media Company These Days?

Add Marriott to the list of content-producing brands. In this week’s issue of Adweek, brand editor Josh Sternberg looked at how Marriott’s content marketing strategy has evolved under soon-to-be-departing CMO Karin Timpone.

Marriott Bonvoy Traveler, which features content for the customer written with travel pointers in mind, scores 500,000 page views a month, according to a source.

Read more: Marriott is quickly learning the power of strong storytelling. See how the hotel brand is building its content arm.

Just Briefly: The rest of today’s top insights

Ad of the Day: This Ikea Ad About the Bond Between 2 Dogs Is Powerful Stuff

Call it emotional manipulation if you must, but Ogilvy Greece’s new ad for Ikea is definitely one of the biggest tearjerkers we’ve seen in years.

The spot for Ikea Greece tells the story of a dog who’s adopted by a loving family but must leave her best friend behind in the process. In just 90 seconds, the spot manages to tell a powerful story that will stick with any dog-lover.

How to Make Your Office More Sustainable

Marci Miller, vp, director of client services, the community

Preservation of the ocean has always remained a priority of ours. Last year, we began to eliminate the use of all plastic. This initiative started relatively small as we provided everyone with coffee mugs and stainless-steel water bottles. Now, we have extended this effort to our partners. For example, if we have an event, one of the qualifying questions for vendors is their ability to deliver without using plastic. It’s been a journey and by no means easy, but having that goal of completely eliminating our use of plastic has definitely made a difference in our consumption.

Let us know what you’re doing to fight climate change.

Have you created a compelling creative campaign to raise awareness? Or maybe your office is doing something unique to cut your carbon footprint.

Let us know. Email me at with what your company is doing.