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DiMassimo Goldstein blog

Welcome to our blog! Each week, our inspiring action content creators work hard to update this page with the latest and greatest in the world of DiGo.

The A-List Podcast with Linda Kaplan Thaler

This week on The A-List Podcast, host and DiMassimo Goldstein CCO Tom Christmann is joined by industry icon and Advertising Hall of Famer, Linda Kaplan Thaler.

Over the course of her illustrious career, Kaplan Thaler created some of the world’s most famous advertising campaigns, such as the Aflac duck. She also authored and composed two of the most globally recognized advertising jingles: “I Don’t Wanna Grow Up, I’m a Toys ‘R’ Us Kid,” and “Kodak Moments.”

Kaplan Thaler’s impressive résumé extends well beyond advertising. She is a nationally acclaimed author with several best-selling books to her name; she has worked on two presidential campaigns; and she has become a familiar face on several television programs.

In this interview, Kaplan Thaler talks about leading with kindness, how to write a good jingle, what it was like interviewing Warren Buffet and Jay Leno, and much, much more. Check out the full episode and show notes below!

Show notes:

  • [0:00 – 1:59] Intro
  • [2:00 – 13:30] Growing up in the Bronx, and how Kaplan Thaler first got into singing and writing both music and comedy
  • [13:31 – 16:38] The famous jingle she wrote for Toys ‘R’ Us, and the worldwide reaction it received
  • [16:39 – 22:19] The secret to writing a good jingle, the story behind “Kodak Moments” and putting humor into advertising
  • [22:20 – 27:53] The moment she knew Robin Koval would be a perfect business partner, and the importance of leading with kindness
  • [27:54 – 33:57] Working on presidential campaigns, and the story behind her interviews with both Warren Buffet and Jay Leno
  • [33:48 – 38:10] Her latest book, Grit to Great, and what “grit” means to her
  • [38:11 – 42:30] The one big piece of advice she has for young creatives
  • [42:31 – 43:58] Outro

“The A-List” is a podcast produced by DiMassimo Goldstein, an inspiring action agency, recorded at the Gramercy Post, and sponsored by the Adhouse Advertising School, New York’s newest, smallest, and hippest ad school. You can subscribe and rate the show on iTunes or listen along on SoundCloud. For updates on upcoming episodes and guests, be sure to like the A-List Podcast on Facebook and follow host Tom Christmann on Twitter

The A-List Podcast with Jamie Barrett

On this week’s edition of The A-List Podcast, Jamie Barrett calls in to the studio for an inspiring interview with host and DiMassimo Goldstein CCO, Tom Christmann.

Barrett is the Founder and Executive Creative Director at barrettSF, an agency he launched in 2012. Before opening his own shop, Barrett made a name for himself as an esteemed creative, delivering world famous campaigns for many of the most renowned agencies in the industry, such as Goodby Silverstein & Partners, Fallon, Wieden+Kennedy and Chiat\Day.

In this episode, learn all about Barrett’s life before advertising, when he spent one summer teaching tennis and windsurfing in the French Riviera and the next at a boot camp in Virginia. Hear what he learned working under some of the most iconic names in advertising, why he views his job as a glorified hobby, the importance of great account people, and much more. Full episode and show notes below!

Show Notes:

  • [0:00 – 1:27] Intro
  • [1:28 – 12:22] Barrett reflects on his childhood, talks about teaching tennis and windsurfing in the French Riviera, and talks about his experience spending one summer at a boot camp in Virginia
  • [12:23 – 18:15] His time at Princeton University, aspirations of becoming a sportswriter, and the moment he realized he wanted to go into advertising
  • [18:16 – 29:42] Trying to break into the industry, being denied 15 straight times, and the awesome story of the dinner with Pat Fallon and Tom McElligott that landed him a gig at Fallon
  • [29:43 – 36:00] Barrett reflects on many of the amazing mentors he worked under before ultimately leaving Fallon to take a job at Chiat/Day in New York
  • [36:01 – 39:40] His short yet meaningful time at Fallon, and the transition between being a writer and becoming an Associate Creative Director
  • [39:41 – 50:00] Barrett talks about his different experiences at each of the agencies he worked at, and how they all helped shape the creative he is today
  • [50:01 – 53:56] The importance of great account people, the emotional intelligence required of good creatives
  • [53:57 – 1:01:26] Launching his own agency, why he doesn’t shy away from the word “advertising,” and the meaning behind the agency’s tortoise mascot
  • [1:01:27 – 1:04:14] What he looks for in young creatives
  • [1:04:15 – 1:05:24] Outro

“The A-List” is a podcast produced by DiMassimo Goldstein, an inspiring action agency, recorded at the Gramercy Post, and sponsored by the Adhouse Advertising School, New York’s newest, smallest, and hippest ad school. You can subscribe and rate the show on iTunes or listen along on SoundCloud. For updates on upcoming episodes and guests, be sure to like the A-List Podcast on Facebook and follow host Tom Christmann on Twitter

The A-List Podcast with Eric Weisberg

On this week’s episode of the A-List Podcast, host and DiMassimo Goldstein CCO Tom Christmann is joined by Eric Weisberg, Global Chief Creative Officer at Doner, where he oversees creative across the agency’s 600-person micro-network in Los Angeles, Detroit, New York City, and London. Beyond his achievements as an award-winning creative, Weisberg is renowned for his ability to blend ideas, technology and media.

In this inspiring interview, Weisberg talks about the innovative ways he would reach out to agencies as a young creative looking for a job, what inspired him this year at Cannes, why collaboration is essential to bringing great ideas to life, and much more! Full episode and show notes below!

Show Notes:

  • [0:00 – 1:30] Intro
  • [1:31 – 5:29] Weisberg talks about his childhood in Ohio, the tagline used for his father’s meat company, and deciding to leave the family business to find a new adventure in life.
  • [5:30 – 10:30] Weisberg reflects on his time at Syracuse University and the teachers that ultimately inspired his career
  • [10:31 – 17:00] Living on a couch in Manhattan to work as an intern, and the creative ways he reached out to agencies for a job
  • [17:10 – 20:58] Eric talks about his first gig at Griswold in Ohio, and the funny story behind him leaving to go to Leo Burnett in Chicago.
  • [20:59 – 31:47] Creative partnership, his first shoot, and the moment he realized he could be have a successful career in advertising
  • [31:48 – 35:30] Weisberg talks about the time an executive fell asleep during one of his presentations, and why he decided to go back to New York to work for Walter Thompson
  • [35:31 – 45:00] “The Story Starting Process”, what he learned under Ty Montague, and helping J&J become the first company to advertise on an iPhone app
  • [45:01 – 48:40] His current role at Doner, and the importance of collaboration
  • [48:41 –54:05] How Cannes re-inspired him this year, and the power of creativity and where it’s going
  • [54:06 – 56:06] Why everyone should eventually teach
  • [56:07 – 58:01] Outro

“The A-List” is a podcast produced by DiMassimo Goldstein, recorded at the Gramercy Post, and sponsored by the Adhouse Advertising School, New York’s newest, smallest, and hippest ad school. You can subscribe and rate the show on iTunes or listen along on SoundCloud. For updates on upcoming episodes and guests, be sure to like the A-List Podcast on Facebook and follow host Tom Christmann on Twitter

The Top Four Adweek 2018 Trends All Marketers Need To Know

By: Matthew Zani

It has been a wild week! Thanks to #AWNewYork 2018, I had the pleasure of immersing myself in panels ranging from Data and AI solutions to VR, AR, Voice, Blockchain, Next Generation Production, Prototyping and beyond. As marketers, we can be easily overwhelmed (and also excited) by the number of shiny objects and metaphysical solutions that we are presented with. In this era of transformation, it’s important to understand all evolving realms of marketing, business and technology in the context of providing great customer experiences that connect to our business goals. All of our activities must be analyzed within the same ecosystem and then strategized and executed upon accordingly.

Knowing this, we MUST cut through the clutter and determine the key factors of change that matter to the businesses we seek to build and grow. Let’s take a look at the four main themes from my experience at Adweek New York 2018 and how they relate to our evolving responsibilities as marketers:

1. Marketing Responsibility = Business Outcomes

The advertising industry has experienced a shift of responsibility, from advertising and marketing outcomes to business outcomes. We now have the ability to attribute marketing metrics to business results, which shifts the modern marketer’s scope of responsibility well beyond messaging and media KPIs and channel strategy to business infrastructure, technical solutions and innovation.

IBM’s 2018 report, The Modern Marketing Mandate, was widely quoted around the conference. The report states that four out of five of the modern CMO’s responsibilities are directly related to business building and results. We see CMOs getting promoted to CGO, president and even CEO. An example of this can be seen in Bonobos, Micky Onvural, who went from CMO to co-president to CEO in just two years at the company.

That said, if the business outcome and related operational factors are not in sight from the second a marketer sets foot in the door, it’s going to be a tough road and for any marketer. As Kristin Lemkau, CMO of JPMorgan Chase, mentioned during a panel on the evolution of the decision-making funnel, “If you’re a CMO coming into a role and your first move is to look at a traditional customer journey or funnel, you’re probably going to be an 18-monther.” That may sound harsh, but that’s reality.

2. Great Business Outcomes Come From Great Omnichannel Customer Experiences

Not only are we responsible for the business, but stakes are higher and it’s more competitive than ever. Markets all over the world are becoming increasingly cutthroat as disruption has become the norm. The world is flatter, and reviews are accessible everywhere. Every moment within this customer journey is a chance for a great (or terrible) experience. And that cannot be overlooked.

Companies such as SoulCycle, with life-changing missions driven and optimized by customer data and technology, are capturing the hearts and minds of consumers. These companies are built around impactful and immersive customer experiences, and they construct every single one of their actions throughout the omnichannel experience around that notion.

With that understanding, marketers must look at every touchpoint throughout the customer journey and factor each into the marketing and business strategy as an opportunity to drive great experiences. No channel should ever be looked at as if it’s in a silo. Think about what your brand provides, what problems you can solve through new and existing channels, and how they all work together. Every area in which a business interacts with a consumer should be strategized, measured and optimized to create less friction and drive great experiences.

Additionally, customer experiences and employee experiences need to align. If you’re not mapping your employee journey and responsibilities against the experience of the customer, you’re missing 50 percent of the equation. Businesses must understand employees’ roles in creating great experiences and, in turn, construct strategies for all parties that add up to their common goals.

3. New Technology Makes Great Experiences Possible

The reason we are able to attribute marketing success to business outcomes is grounded in technology. We can use technology to build great experiences, from identifying customers early on in their journey and serving them highly personalized messages throughout the relationship, to creating immersive brand experiences that strengthen affinity for the brand.

It was said throughout the week that marketers need to get their tech stack “on one page.” We need to understand the pieces of technology that are important to driving great experiences and focus efforts around them. If data consolidation is a central priority to providing a personalized experience, then focus on getting the infrastructure in place to enhance customer experience. If an automated customer service strategy is necessary, then understand how that fits into the customer journey of the audience and test it thoroughly.

New technologies such as AI are all the rage, but understanding their role is key to using them in a way that makes sense to your business. AI is going to change the way we work and begin making trivial decisions for us so that we can focus on experience strategies and innovation. Machines will worry about the “when” and “where” for a given message, and as marketers we can stay focused on the “why.”

One of my favorite quotes from the week was provided by Mark Penn from The Stagwell Group:

“Numbers + Creativity = Strategy.”

This notion is critical: As we use technology throughout our business to provide us with data and insights, we should also bring our human decision-making strengths to the table. Use numbers and technology to reduce friction and inform creativity. This will ensure that we’re always keeping the customer in mind as we make decisions based on new technology.

4. And stay innovating

Once our business machine is up and running, we can’t stop. We are responsible for taking the data from customer and prospect activities, content interests and reviews and then building innovative products and experiences out of them.

At Adweek New York 2018 we saw examples of companies going to new lengths to bring innovation to their businesses: Subway partnering with Tastemade to bring data from content strategies into product innovation. SoulCycle getting into the audio and media space, turning insights from the final five minutes of class experiences into inspirational audio experiences that can be taken anywhere. Jordan Brands using Snapchat’s AR capabilities as an immersive platform to market and sell new shoes. Monster.com using first-of-its-kind technology to bring new CGI experiences to its omnichannel strategy.

We must be setting up systems and structures that allow for us to turn old functions into NEW ideas, business models, practices and audiences. We must never stop at a well-oiled machine, but rather look at the pieces of our business that we can grow, the channels we should bring our message and experiences into, and the communities we can create and cultivate through our work.

Thanks for the memories, Adweek NYC 2018! Until next year!

 

 

The A-List Podcast with Chris Beresford-Hill

For our fourth episode of Season 2 of The A-List Podcast, host and DiMassimo Goldstein CCO Tom Christmann is joined by Chris Beresford-Hill, Chief Creative Officer at TBWA\Chiat\Day New York!

In this special interview, Chris explains his creative process and how it’s changed over the years, reflects on some of the great people he’s worked with and what he’s learned from them, talks about placing brands in modern culture, and much much more. Full episode and show notes below!

Show Notes:

  • [0:00 – 1:43] Intro
  • [1:44 – 8:14] Chris takes us back to his childhood in White Plains, New York, and talks about his Grandma was his best friend growing up.
  • [8:15 –12:14] How he got fired from an unpaid marketing internship, a job as a tennis instructor, and a job as a file clerk before eventually getting into advertising.
  • [12:15 – 16:50] Interning at Mad Dogs & Englishmen, and the competition he won to get to the role.
  • [16:51 – 20:55] Chris reflects on the unique culture at Goodby Silverstein & Partners, and talks about the amazing he experience he had working under Jamie Barrett.
  • [20:56 – 24:59] Turning down a master’s degree at the London School of Economics to continue his career in advertising
  • [25:00 – 26:55] Going to first shoot in Hollywood as a 21-year old, and what life was like on the road.
  • [26:56 – 31:30] Chris shares a funny story behind why he took the job at Goodby
  • [31:31 – 42:08] Partnership, why Dan Lucey is his “creative soulmate”, and how working out has helpedwith  creativity
  • [42: 09 – 44:00] The value of putting your phone away and work offline
  • [44:01 – 57:05] His present role at TBWA\Chiat\Day, the agency’s storied history, and placing brands in modern culture
  • [57:06 – 59:47] What he looks for in a portfolio
  • [59:48 – 1:00:42] Outro

“The A-List” is a podcast produced by DiMassimo Goldstein, recorded at the Gramercy Post, and sponsored by the Adhouse Advertising School, New York’s newest, smallest, and hippest ad school. You can subscribe and rate the show on iTunes or listen along on SoundCloud. For updates on upcoming episodes and guests, be sure to like the A-List Podcast on Facebook and follow host Tom Christmann on Twitter

Brandweek Recap: It’s All About The Consumer

At the inaugural Brandweek conference this week in Palm Desert, CA, I learned a LOT.

I learned that marketers at big brands don’t want to be sold to, but they do want to embrace their brand’s problems — and sometimes even faults, when they are in a safe space.

I learned that the newest brands on the block, like Away, are able to be so consumer-centric, that adding in an agency wouldn’t have a bigger impact than what they’ve built internally.

I learned that everyone who works in marketing is always going to be chasing the next ad tech and working hard — like, really hard — to explain that to anyone who will listen.

I learned that there are so many things I would have never learned if I hadn’t made the time to get out of our office and see what everyone else is talking about.

But today, I want to talk about something that all agencies need to learn. If you are an agency, and you aren’t focused on the value you provide to clients, then you are doing it wrong. If you work in an agency and you aren’t focused on the ways you can help brands better communicate, engage and interact with their consumers, the ways you can help them UNDERSTAND their consumer better, than you could take some advice from the people behind the brands that I met at Brandweek.

This was a well-attended conference. Marketers like Rick Gomez from Target, Jen Rubio from Away, Michael Dubin from Dollar Shave Club, and Leesa Eichberger from Farmers Insurance were in the audience and on the stage talking about what ground they are breaking and what problems they are facing. I even got the opportunity to sit next to Victoria Russell, the Chief Diversity Officer of Papa John’s, during a workshop. Yes, she knew about the scandals before she took the job, and yes, I believe she will be the person to turn that brand around.

Between the varying degrees of brand awareness and brand loyalty, the thing that everyone had in common was the fact that they are all SO laser-focused on their consumer. What is their experience? How do I draw them in? How does their feedback shape my product lifecycle? How does their feedback save my business?

We got to hear about all of these issues from the marketers themselves, but even better, we got to work through them together during two different break-out workshops. People were asked to connect on issues and topics like “collaboration” and “the brand’s role in society.” They were asked to think about new media opportunities and new technology that could solve problems. And then entire rooms of people got to connect on those issues and problem-solve together.

So, what did I learn that I will take back to my team that I think will REALLY make a difference? It’s all about the consumer.

At DiGo, this isn’t a new idea. We’ve worked alongside inspiring action companies for over two decades, and each time, we’ve placed the consumer at the center of everything we do. Inspiring action companies know the importance of  “learning what your devotees love about themselves with you”.

This is what we do for our clients, even when they don’t realize it.  It’s our focus on this that allows us to truly act like a brand-and business-building partner to our clients. It’s what turned Weight Watchers around, and what led HelloFresh to outpace Blue Apron in the meal-kit delivery wars of 2017. It’s what re-launched Reader’s Digest, and what is behind the work we’re doing for the Partnership for a Drug-Free Kids and Salesforce.org.

It’s Inspiring Action.

The A-List Podcast with Tiffany Rolfe

This week on The A-List Podcast, host and DiMassimo Goldstein CCO Tom Christmann is joined by Tiffany Rolfe, Partner and Chief Content Officer at Co:collective.

Prior to joining Co:collective six years ago, Rolfe spent 10 years at Crispin Porter + Bogusky, where she ultimately became the co-executive creative director of their Los Angeles office.

In this interview, Rolfe talks about the importance of taking risks, what it was like working as a web designer in the early stages of the internet, why brands need to align their stories with their actions, and much much more. Full episode below and show notes below!

Show Notes:

  • [0:00 – 1:26] Into
  • [1:27 – 4:14] Rolfe talks about her childhood growing up in Oklahoma before ultimately packing her bags and moving to Los Angeles
  • [4:15 – 8:44] What it was like working as a programmer and web designer for startups in the early stages of the internet
  • [8:45 – 11:55] Going back to school at the ArtCenter College of Design in California and falling in love with advertising
  • [11:56 – 13:41] Rolfe takes us through the first few months after she graduated, and why she wanted to work at Crispin.
  • [13:42 – 19:55] The 10-hour interview with Alex Bogusky that led to 10 years at Crispin, and the unique portfolio that helped land her the job.
  • [19:56 – 29:36] Rolfe talks about the philosophy and culture at Crispin, and how much of what she learned there helped shape the creative she is today
  • [29:37 – 33:22] What you can learn from making mistakes
  • [33:23 – 37:01] Rolfe recounts the moment she realized she was a leader
  • [37:02 –43:52] Moving her life to New York and becoming a Chief Content Officer and Partner at Co:collective, and what makes co:collective different than other agencies
  • [43:53 – 49:35] “Storydoing” and how doing your story instead of telling your story manifests across an entire organization
  • [49:36 – 51: 10] Creating cultural impact with creative ideas
  • [51:11 – 54:30] Rolfe offers advice to young creatives trying to break into the industry
  • [54:31 – 55:57] Outro

“The A-List” is a podcast produced by DiMassimo Goldstein, recorded at the Gramercy Post, and sponsored by the Adhouse Advertising School, New York’s newest, smallest, and hippest ad school. You can subscribe and rate the show on iTunes or listen along on SoundCloud. For updates on upcoming episodes and guests, be sure to like the A-List Podcast on Facebook and follow host Tom Christmann on Twitter

The A-List Podcast with Dan Lucey

This week on the A-List Podcast, host and DiMassimo Goldstein CCO Tom Christmann is joined by Dan Lucey, Executive Creative Director at BBDO. With multiple awards to his name from Cannes to The One Show, among many others, Dan is one of the most respected and accomplished creatives in the industry.

In this episode, Dan takes us full circle, starting from his time as a student at Adhouse Advertising School all the up way to becoming a teacher for the program. He shares valuable lessons from his experiences of both triumph and defeat, tells the story behind his hilarious Talking Stain ad for Tide, and explains why having “unrealistic optimism” is an asset in the advertising industry.

Full episode and show notes below!

  • [0:00 – 1:27] Intro
  • [1:28 – 6:05] Dan talks about how being a student at AdHouse helped him break into the industry, and how he returns the favor today by being a teacher for the program
  • [6:06: 11:30] Getting an internship at Mad Dogs & Englishmen and what that experience was like
  • [11:31 – 13:55] How working by yourself can help you find your point of view, and why having a balance of both honesty and respect is essential in a creative partnership
  • [13:56 – 18:30] Dan reflects on the culture at Mad Dogs & Englishmen and what he learned from his time there
  • [18:31 – 21:49] Getting a full-time gig and moving into an apartment on the Upper East Side, and getting to work on Haribo Gummy Bears
  • [21:50 – 25:10] Dan talks about being laid off, what he learned from the experience, and why being unrealistically optimistic is an important asset in the advertising industry
  • [25:11 – 27:50] Freelancing for magazines and getting back into design
  • [27:51 – 29: 29] Getting back into advertising working on the Hard Rock Hotel for DiMassimo Goldstein before ultimately going to Saatchi & Saatchi
  • [29:30 – 36:18] Dan talks about what it’s like to work at a big agency and shares his mental approach to work
  • [36:18 – 42:55] The story behind his hilarious Talking Stain ad for Tide
  • [42:56 – 47:00] Moving to San Francisco to take a job at Goodby Silverstein & Partners, and what he learned from working in Jamie Barrett’s pressure-free environment
  • [47:01 –49:32] Dan shares a recent story that highlights the importance of staying calm in the midst of chaos
  • [49:33 – 55:14] Why he waited 18 months to take the job at Goodby, and the passion and intensity that Rich Silverstein has to make things great
  • [55:15 – 58:35] Why he eventually moved back to New York to work with Chris Beresford-Hll at BBDO, and why he loves the culture there
  • [58:36 – 1:00:27] Dan talks about his leadership and management style, the importance of clear direction, and not forgetting what it’s like being a young creative
  • [1:00:28 – 1:02:58] Dan shares what he looks for in portfolios
  • [1:02:59 – 1:03:41] Outro

 “The A-List” is a podcast produced by DiMassimo Goldstein, recorded at the Gramercy Post, and sponsored by the Adhouse Advertising School, New York’s newest, smallest, and hippest ad school. You can subscribe and rate the show on iTunes or listen along on SoundCloud. For updates on upcoming episodes and guests, be sure to like the A-List Podcast on Facebook and follow host Tom Christmann on Twitter