This week in class we were lucky enough to be joined by John Russell. John is the Director of Marketing at Tillamook Cheese and previously worked as an account executive at Wieden+Kennedy, Saatchi & Saatchi, BBDO, and Leopold Ketel.
John spoke to us about his experience and gave us valuable advice, ideas, and trends that will prove very helpful in navigating our way into the advertising industry. Below are a few notes from John’s presentation that I wanted to share:
Two Important Pieces of Advice
- Play in the “gulf stream” of the advertising world. By this John meant working for a big name agency on a brand name (John worked for 8 years on the Nike account) and being well-connected. This gives you the power to play in the gulf stream and work anywhere in the world.
- Once you get into the advertising industry, search for the stuff that gets you excited. The more excited you are, the better work you do. The better work you do, the better your career goes.
With experience on both the agency and client/company side, John told us about each of their upsides and downsides:
Agency Upsides: fun, energetic, creative environment, exposed to many brands/categories, you can work anywhere in the world, short lead times, strategy, TV, print, interactive, radio, outdoor, design, events, etc.
Agency Downsides: Extremely competitive, hard to get into, low pay to start, job security, long hours; weekends.
Client/Company Upsides: 3D, 360 degree view of a brand (same as agency + pricing, distribution, sales, etc.), much better job security, work with agencies, you make the final decision.
Client/Company Downsides: You make the final decision (you get the blame if things go wrong), 1 brand, bureaucracy, and long lead times.
He also shared six huge trends in the industry with us:
1. Balance Between Traditional and New Media
2. TV, Magazine, Newspaper, Radio Migration to Internet
3. Internet Migration to Mobile
4. Importance of Bloggers
5. Viral Videos
6. Big Integrated Agencies to Small Specialized Shops
Overall, John’s presentation gave us great insights on brand management from both the agency and client side. He also shared tips on how to break into the business, which were extremely helpful.
Thank you for your generosity, John!
(Photo courtesy of @debkmorrison)