Vibrator: On the Christmas party trail, featuring Channel 4, FCB Inferno, Jam and more

The Drum's resident gossip Claire Snare keeps her eardrum finely tuned to bring you the latest juice that those sneaky press teams are dying to keep quiet.

Come one, come all to the hive of marketing industry gossip that is The Drum’s Vibrator.

The office Christmas party is arguably the highlight of the year, allowing all you hardworking marketing and media types to let off some steam. This year our girl about town Claire Snare was there enjoying a few margaritas and – more importantly – taking notes.

Ice ice baby

FCB Inferno went big for its bash, gutting an entire floor of its offices to transform it into a winter wonderland, complete with smoke machines, ice sculptures, vodka luges and no less than three bars. Elbows were out as there was a stampede for the day’s festivities, which involved blow dries and champagne for the girls at the agency’s neighbouring salon Charles Worthington, while the boys were treated to wet shaves, haircuts and Old Fashioneds at Ted Baker.

FCB Inferno’s senior execs were seen swaying, drinks aloft, to the music belted out by the four-piece Ronnie Scott’s jazz and blues band, while those in need of an even more relaxed evening of unwinding headed to the piano bar for a sing-along. Later, the DJ and lasers came out and dancing went on ‘til dawn, when – I’m told – more than a few agency peeps faced the dreaded walk of shame.

Tanked up

AKQA went for a bit of an off-the-wall Christmas party idea this year and chose a futuristic theme. This saw the agency hire an actual army tank and drive it around the streets of London during its party.

Dahl-ightful

Sunshine Agency also chose to have a Christmas party theme that didn’t follow the traditional way of things – the characters of Roald Dahl.

There were Oompa Loompas, Enormous Crocodiles, Fantastic Foxes and even Willy Wonka made an appearance. Yours truly decided to avoid looking like a Twit despite enjoying a lot of the marvellous medicine that was available on the evening.

Turning tricks

There wasn’t a single night in the run-up to the holidays without a string of back-to-back Christmas bashes and I’m in no doubt whatsoever that mine wasn’t the only quivering liver in the industry limping towards the finishing line. Channel 4’s shindig at Bodega Negra in central London saw all its top brass make light work of the open bar, which churned out some pretty potent margaritas and other tequila-based, heady variations. Guests were wowed by the mind tricks of young magician Troy Von Scheibner, who walked around the venue performing brilliant street magic and stunts which have made his show on Channel 4 such a success.

Suited and booted

Kudos to Katie Graham, partner and head of marketing at Engine’s agency Jam, for managing to dodge parading around in a festive Christmas suit – unlike her colleagues, managing director Richard Costa-D’Sa and strategy director Iain Matthews – for the office party. Someone nabbed a sneaky shot of the trio as they were dolled up for their Christmas do. I heard the suits were couriered over especially for the occasion. Nice work guys.

Deer oh deer

We couldn’t resist the urge to revisit our industry’s resident reindeer fan. Spotted once more only months after his initial brush with a stag’s head in a London pub after IAB Engage, Celtra’s Jonathan Milne was once again unmasked snatching a cheeky peck on the cheek with more than a few festive reindeer wannabes.

Heard any juicy stories you want me to know about? Email me at claire.snare@thedrum.com or vibrator@thedrum.com. All tip offs will be handled in confidence. I promise!

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