The Villa Maria label redesign – updated

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AUCKLAND, Today: A comms glitch threw a spanner into the works in yesterday’s story about Villa Maria’s label redesign, leading M+AD to wrongfully conclude VM’s agency Contagion was “sidelined” in the creative process.

Our story was also unnecessarily harsh on the Pead PR staffer who supplied the release.

So let’s get this straight – Contagion is still very much VM’s creative & media agency of record.

“And Pead acted properly in delaying an answer to our persistent, late-night queries about Contagion’s role, while they sought more information from the client.

The label was the work of Villa Maria’s in-house design team, which led us to enquire why Contagion was “sidelined”.

“Wine label design is super niche and usually handled in-house or by packaging specialists.”

Freelance creative Mark Easterbrook, in a posted comment on the M+AD site, showed where M+AD got it wrong: “I would be very surprised if Contagion were asked to do this, and that is no slight on them,” he wrote.

“Wine label design is super niche and usually handled in-house or by packaging specialists.”

Easterbrook’s comment says it all. Wine label design is clearly a highly specialised art – and M+AD failed to recognise this.

Pead did respond fully the next morning: “Yes Contagion is the creative & media agency for Villa Maria. We’ve had confirmation this morning that Contagion created the animation that has been used across Villa Maria’s socials. Contagion is also responsible for social buys in key markets to push the message out to consumers.”

Pead also supplied an updated credits list.


Head of Marketing and Communications, Villa Maria Estate: Sarah Szegota
Brands Manager, Villa Maria Estate: Ben Cull
Designer, Villa Maria Estate: Anita Niven
Research consultant: Paul Fitzgerald, Lumaten
PR agency: Pead
Creative & media agency: Contagion

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