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Welcome to Ad Age’s Wake-Up Call, our daily roundup of advertising, marketing, media and digital news. If you're reading this online or in a forwarded email, here's the link to sign up for our Wake-Up Call newsletters.

Marketers flock to Clubhouse

At the end of 2020, pretty much nobody was talking about Clubhouse, the new audio app that merges the expertise aspect of LinkedIn with the appeal of podcasts. Fast forward a few weeks and oh, how times have changed.  As Ad Age's Ilyse Liffreing reports, even in the past week, marketing leaders have flocked to Clubhouse “to lead often-spontaneous talks on everything from the Super Bowl 5-second Reddit ad to best practices on social tracking, content marketing and productivity hacks.”

They include Fernando Machado, global chief marketing officer at Restaurant Brands International, who led a Clubhouse discussion around the company’s fourth-quarter earnings last Friday. It felt “like a fun live radio talk show,” he says. Gary Vaynerchuk, CEO of VaynerMedia, has also hosted a number of talks on the app.

One thing to note: Clubhouse's invite-only strategy “feeds on the fear of missing out” as everyone who joins can invite their own friends, growing the user base through personal connections. Expect your invite soon, or feel the FOMO.

Crest ‘reconsiders’ Bachelor host

Hot on the heels of the Springsteen/Jeep controversy, here comes another cautionary tale on the perils of using a celebrity in your campaign. Ad Age's Jack Neff reports that Procter & Gamble is reconsidering using Chris Harrison of "The Bachelor" in upcoming advertising for Crest Whitening Emulsions after his controversy-fueled hiatus from the show.

Harrison last week said he’s temporarily stepping back from his role on the ABC reality series after blowback against his comments about contestant Rachael Kirkconnell, who was reportedly photographed at an antebellum plantation-themed fraternity event in 2018. The Bachelor tie-in is part of a broader campaign behind Crest’s Whitening Emulsions that launched earlier this month; it’s not clear if a new ad featuring Harrison will go forward.

“We are aware of the developments around Chris Harrison and his role as host of 'The Bachelor,'” a spokeswoman for P&G said in a statement. “We are in the process of gathering more information about these circumstances to determine our next steps. We are deeply disappointed in his comments, which do not reflect our values.”

A new front in Epic vs Apple

Epic Games this morning added a new front to its ongoing legal battle against Apple by filing a complaint with European Union regulators over the iPhone maker’s App Store rules.

In addition to suing Apple in the U.S. and Australia, the maker of Fortnite said that it was also asking the EU to step in after facing retaliation for trying to sidestep Apple’s requirement for programs downloaded from the App Store to use its own payment system, reports Bloomberg News. The complaint could add to an EU investigation started last year into whether Apple violates competition law.

Sylvester is Target's new CMO

Target has a new top marketer. As Ad Age’s Adrianne Pasquarelli reports, the Minneapolis-based retailer promoted Cara Sylvester, a 14-year Target veteran, to the chief marketing officer post on Tuesday. Rick Gomez, who was promoted to CMO four years ago, moves into the role of chief food and beverage officer.

Before her promotion, Sylvester was working as senior VP of home, an important sector for the retailer which has poured resources into its private-label collections, many of which have become billion-dollar brands. Now, she’ll be charged with expanding Target’s relatively new loyalty program, Target Circle, as well as ensuring Target continues its sales momentum as consumer behavior changes amid COVID-19 vaccine rollouts.

Just briefly

Don't forget: The final deadline to submit for the Ad Age A-List and Creativity Awards is March 2. The awards celebrate the most accomplished agencies, standout work and forward-thinking leaders and talents in the industry. Full details here

Another reminder: Entries for Ad Age Leading Women Europe are due by Feb 24. This annual program recognizes trailblazing women in the industry who reside and work in Europe. Submit your free entry here

Political passion: Continuing Creativity’s Black History Month series celebrating creative excellence, this week’s guest editor, Team Epiphany Founder and Managing Partner Coltrane Curtis, shines a light on veteran music photographer Mel D. Cole, and his newfound passion for capturing the political strife that has plagued the nation.

Gizmo's back: Will the '80s nostalgia never end? Never mind, we're enjoying it. Mtn Dew has resurrected Gizmo from “Gremlins” for its latest spot illustrating the tagline "as good as the original, maybe even better." TBWA/Chiat/Day New York persuaded two of the cult '80s movie’s original stars, Zach Galligan (who played hero Billy) and Howie Mandel (who voiced Gizmo) to return. In the ad, directed by Prettybird's Calmatic, a grown-up Billy lets Gizmo try some of his Mtn Dew Zero Sugar, warning him "Be careful." But clearly Billy hasn't learned any lessons at all over the last 40 years. Watch it over at Creativity. 

That does it for today’s Wake-Up Call, thanks for reading and we hope you are all staying safe and well. For more industry news and insight, follow us on Twitter:@adage. From CMO Strategy to the Ad Age Datacenter Weekly, we’ve got newsletters galore. See them all here. 

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