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Takeaways from DIG Outreach Event: "Elevate your Mind."

Posted By Emily Hope, Tuesday, February 27, 2018

ThinkLA's DIG Committee was proud to participate in an event that inspired African American high school students from across Los Angeles titled "Black Excellence Expo: Elevate your Mind."

The event was a combined effort from 18 committed, LA area schools, with panelists across many different fields: doctors, lawyers, advertisers, athletes, activists, fashion and entertainment industries. The keynote speaker was Robert Townsend, actor, comedian, director, and writer, and CEO of Townsend Entertainment.



The ongoing theme throughout the event was staying true to who you are, embracing your true self, and overall ethnic pride. Each speaker shared their personal journey and different struggles along their career path that have led them to where there are today.



Samantha Hawkins, Supervisor, Community Management at RPA, and DIG committee member, spoke on a panel about the importance of public service and had these takeaways from the event:

"I may not be in public service per se, but as advertisers we have a responsibility to produce work that is inclusive and represents the diversity of the people we reach with our ads every day. Advertising is everywhere. People like my fellow panelists are not represented in mainstream advertising, and we can change that so young people are accustomed to seeing people that look like them depicted in positions of power and influence in our marketing. So they know those types of careers and lifestyles are not just held exclusively for a certain type of person who looks a certain way, but that they too have the potential to achieve what they want in life. The best way of ensuring that shift, is to hire more people of color and with diverse backgrounds into roles in advertising and marketing." 





  • African Americans are going to have to work harder. Factor that into the equation and prepare for it."
  • "When they doubt your ability, use that as fuel to your flame: Prove them wrong, and get used to doing that again and again." - Mel Carlisle, Managing Director, Oaktree Capital Management
  • Everyone applying wants the job, but who has a passion for it? Stand out from the competition by being able to articulate why you love it.
  • Connect with real people outside of your job. Do things that put you in contact with the real world not just to round out your résumé, but to keep you grounded and rooted in helping others.


Tags:  #ThinkDIG  Diversity  entertainment  student outreach 

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Member Spotlight: Clarissa Garrett, Senior Art Producer, RPA

Posted By Emily Hope, Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Photos: Don Lupo Photography


How did you get started in advertising? What's been your career road map?

I was about 5 years old when I began performing my favorite ad jingle for my mother and her friends at their Saturday night hangouts. I’d sneak in the kitchen, steal a frying pan and start singing “I can bring home the bacon…fry it up in a pan”! This circa 1980 Enjoli perfume commercial reenactment always resulted in riotous laughter to my satisfaction.

Completely unaware that Advertising was a viable career option, I applied to Syracuse Universities S.I Newhouse School of public communications out of high school, in hopes of becoming the next Oprah. It only took 3 weeks of a first-year broadcast journalism class to confirm that the “News” was not my passion. I switched to the Advertising track and consumed all aspects of the discipline.

After graduation, I had no idea how to land a job in the field so I researched mentoring programs. [ThinkLA's] Minority Advertising Training program (MAT) helped me to land an internship at Saatchi & Saatchi where I partnered with an amazing mentor. With her help, I found the Art Production department which was a creative mix of photography, project management and world travel!

After a decade working Automotive accounts and then a few years freelancing, I landed my dream job working on the Apple account. With a deep love for Apple products at an intensely creative agency, I proudly helped to launch the iPad and was one of the Senior producers for the Shot on iPhone campaign. I’m now happily working on Honda on a brand I both love and respect at an agency whose mission is to put its people first (RPA).




What keeps you motivated? Do you have a personal motto?

“Just keep singing”… My love for music and performing keeps me motivated. Learning, writing, performing and creating music cleanses my soul! Even just listening to music of all genres calms my mind. It’s sort of prophetic in the way that it becomes the window into what is happening in culture and in our collective consciousness. When I began writing my own music, it gave me a voice and allowed me to live life more “woke” and happy. Music is therapy and it sparks creativity. Everyone should have something in their lives that fills their heart in this way. What excites you most about this industry? It’s exciting because it’s always evolving and requires its members to evolve as well. You can’t hate change and be successful in this business. Advertising reflects and informs culture and so we have to watch it and live it and make sure we are hiring diverse cultural influencers and experts so that our voice remains relevant and our ideas stay fresh.

Where is advertising heading? What do the next five years look like?

 You only have to watch a couple of Black Mirror episodes to know we are only at the beginning of the digital media evolution. My kids aren’t into social media at all, they are busy building their own worlds in Minecraft! Ads are becoming product placements in our digital lives and that is probably only going to go to deeper more savvy levels.

What advice do you have for black advertising professionals that are beginning their career?

 Find an amazing mentor! Please note, this person does not necessarily need to look like you! If you find someone you admire, just start asking questions. See if they are willing to make an investment in your dream by sharing what they’ve learned. I’ve had incredible mentors through the years at every level in my career from diverse backgrounds and each enriched my life and path in profound ways.

What should our industry be talking about in 2018?

As advertisers I think we have the power to change the narrative in culture. I believe we should be putting out messages of unity and continue to focus on ending divisiveness in the world.

In the summer of 2016, I was one of the producers on an Apple spot called “The Human Family” which celebrated global diversity and was narrated by the late poet laureate Maya Angelou. It was released at a time when our country needed the message. And yes, it sold products but it also sold hope, unity and the idea that we are all “more alike, than we are unalike”.

Any closing thoughts?

Just keep singing…

Tags:  #ThinkDIG  Art Producer  Career Advice  Creatives  Diversity  Member Spotlight  RPA 

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Member Spotlight: Ed Chambliss, CEO, Phelps

Posted By Emily Hope, Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Photos: Don Lupo Photography


How did you get started in advertising? What's been your career road map?

When I was seven years old, I visited my Uncle’s post-production studio. I was fascinated by how commercials were put together - all the tools and tricks that went into creating an ad. I wanted to use those tools to tell stories, which led me to my initial career as a copywriter. While working at BBDO, I taught a series of courses in creativity at The Portfolio Center and came to realize that while I was a good creative, I wasn’t a great one. What I was great at was brand and creative strategy. So I left copywriting and enrolled in the Masters of Integrated of Marketing Communication program at the University of Colorado in Boulder. When I graduated, Joe Phelps hired me to be a mid-level account guy. Over the last 18 years I’ve pitched and led accounts, and led the agency through a succession of roles – first as chief operating officer, then president and now CEO.




What keeps you motivated? Do you have a personal motto?

I’m on a quest. And have been for a most of my career. There just has to be a better way for companies to interact with customers. When two people have a conversation, everything is relatively straightforward. The conversation flows both ways. People talk. People listen. The conversation progresses and benefits both sides. But when a company tries to communicate as one entity, it’s a train wreck. Listening seems to be optional (or at least intermittent) and speaking only seems to clumsily advance the brand’s interests. So I wake up every day, knowing deep down inside that this can be fixed. It’s a big problem that clearly can’t be solved overnight. But I think we, as an industry, can do it to the benefit of everyone involved.


What’s the most important lesson you’ve learned so far?

Customers are people. It sounds simple, but so many things our industry does completely ignore the fact that on the other end of our communications isn’t a “target” but an individual human being – a protagonist in their own narrative filled with pains, joys, drama and desires. We ignore that at our own peril.


What excites you most about this industry?

Thanks to technology, we’re entering an era where marketing can serve people, and we can establish authentic, equitable relationships between people and brands. As we continue to get more information about people, we come to understand how communications can support rather than interrupt their lives.


Where is advertising heading? What do the next five years look like?

We’re on the road to either distinction or extinction, depending on the struggle between convenience and quality and how we use data as a result. If quality wins, advertising will become more relevant to people than ever, because we’ll mine data to understand individual needs and create brand conversations with meaning and utility. If convenience wins, we will become little more than technicians shoveling data around, helping our clients stalk prospects with no regard for what they want.


Why are you involved with ThinkLA?

Our business is so competitive. We’re constantly trying to edge each other out of the way so that we can win (or retain) clients. We need to remember that we’re also a community. It’s important and rewarding to take a moment every once in a while to enjoy each other’s company (and war stories) and help each other overcome shared challenges. Also, who doesn’t love AdJam?


What advice do you have for those just starting in advertising?

Learn the software. Learn to code. But don’t stop there. Learn to speak. Learn to write. Learn about people, particularly what cements our shared humanity. And learn about yourself. You’ll need all of those skills to succeed.


Any closing thoughts?

The ancient Greek philosopher Epictetus said something advertising needs to live by if we’re to earn a meaningful place in the emerging world: “We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we speak.

Tags:  #ThinkMembers  Advertising  CEO  Ed Chambliss  LA Advertising  Member  Phelps  PhelpsAdvertising 

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Global Wednesday: February

Posted By Emily Hope, Thursday, February 8, 2018
It's big (ad) world, but we aim to make it feel even smaller by highlighting inventive, global ads, monthly, that are breaking the mold from the mundane. To capture that global spirit, we will feature inspiration from outside of the U.S. and sometimes from brands that we've never even heard of!
These international ads are brought to you by Luis Camano, an award winning creative and an expert in the field of Brand Activation. 


1. Toblerone/China, found a fun and very inventive way to sell more chocolate. A lot more chocolate.

Enjoy this playful video, minus the hideous background track. 

2. I don’t know about you, but I’ve always wanted to blow up my cable bill. Well, now thanks to the folks at Claro Cable/Colombia, you can! 


3. Finally, the Quebec Magic Festival delivered a few surprises on the streets of Quebec. Here are a couple of them: 




Tags:  Global Ads  Global Wednesday  International Advertising  Luis Camano 

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Super Bowl LII - ThinkLA Member Ads and Insights

Posted By Emily Hope, Monday, February 5, 2018

Every year, we remind Madison Ave. that the West Coast means business when it comes to Super Bowl advertising spends. Below is our annual list of #BigGame spots, promotions and insights that came from our corporate members. Enjoy! 


Saatchi & Saatchi | Toyota - Mobility Anthem


Saatchi & Saatchi | Toyota: One Team


Saatchi & Saatchi | Toyota, Good Odds


Saatchi & Saatchi | Tide, It's a Tide Ad


Saatchi & Saatchi | Tide, It's Another Tide Ad


Saatchi & Saatchi | Tide, It's Yet Another Tide Ad


Saatchi & Saatchi | Tide, It's Yet Another Tide Ad Again


Walton Isaacson | Lexus / Marvel Studios Black Panther


Amazon | Amazon Alexa


Amazon Prime Video | Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan 


David&Goliath | Kia


David&Goliath | Jack In The Box


Hulu | Hulu Castle Rock


Innocean USA | Hyundai Kona



Alphonso | Ad Insights Center

Alphonso tracked the performance of all Super Bowl LII ads in real time, with their Alphonso Ad Insights Center. Attribution reports for Super Bowl ads, using CPG sales data, credit card data, location data and tune-in data will be posted within three weeks.


Kantar Media | The Numbers

Kantar Media’s preliminary estimate of in-game ad expenditures for Super Bowl LII, subject to revision, is $414 million. This would be the second largest amount in history besides last year’s game, which was the first to run into overtime.

Read more:


Verizon Media | Tests the Limits of 5G

Super Bowl LII was the backdrop for a quiet 5G proving ground, as Verizon (VZ) tested an in-stadium pre-commercial 5G network connection to demonstrate how massive speed and bandwidth can bring live video and virtual reality experiences to new levels.

Read more:


Jumpstart Automotive | Media Super Bowl Report

Jumpstart Automotive released its annual Super Bowl report, which reveals the auto brands that drove the greatest traffic increases across its portfolio of publishers. Super Bowl LII, which registered 103.4 million viewers, saw advertising from several car brands during pre-game, the halftime show, and the game itself, including Toyota, Kia, Hyundai, Lexus, Ram, Jeep, and Mercedes-Benz.

View the report:


Tags:  #ThinkMembers  Advertising  Alphonso  Amazon  Corporate Members  D&G  David&Goliath  Hulu  Hyundai  Innocean  Jumpstart Auto  Kantar Media  Lexus  Los Angeles Advertising  Saatchi & Saatchi  SBLII  Super Bowl LII  Verizon Media  Walton Isaacson 

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Member Spotlight: Bupendra Ram

Posted By Emily Hope, Tuesday, January 30, 2018
Updated: Tuesday, February 6, 2018

How did you get started in advertising? What's been your career road map?

Ethnically, I am Indian, but I was born in the Fiji Islands. I came to the U.S. when I was two years old when my family fled Fiji because of a political coup. We got a tourist visa to enter the U.S. Before we left, we met a man who was charging people $10,000 for an opportunity to get a green card as soon as we entered the U.S.

Upon our arrival in the U.S., we were presented with a green card. By the time we realized it was a hoax, we had overstayed and became undocumented. At the age of 23, I became Undocumented and Unafraid, and Queer and Unashamed. At this time, I joined passionate and resilient people to fight for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (DACA) and help people understand that immigration is a global issue and not just for people south of our border.

In 2014, as a strong and unified community, we helped the Obama administration do the right thing by partnering with hundreds of lawyers to provide him with the legal groundings to provide administrative relief to a category of undocumented youth.


Don Lupo Photography


As a recipient of DACA, my career in Human Resources has been relatively short but full of adventure and growth.

When I received DACA, I started to think about the opportunities that were not previously available or open to me. As a natural community builder and networker, I reached out to people and conducted informational interviews. I quickly learned that Human Resources would be the perfect blend of my love for business and people. In addition, I would be able to take my learnings back to my respective communities in two ways: 

  • I would learn how to support people from disadvantaged background with career planning, structuring and formatting their resume, branding themselves, and improving their interviewing skills;
  • I would learn the how to help others like me gain access to opportunities not always open to people with my experience or those who look like me.

The overall goal would be to become a Diversity and Inclusion practitioner to aggressively impact corporate culture.

Three years ago, I accepted an internship that would give me a broad understanding of Human Resources and gain practical experience. After outgrowing that role, I found an amazing opportunity as a Human Resources Coordinator at my first advertising agency, Hawthorne. I loved working with some of the most passionate and dedicated people in the industry. I directly impacted Hawthorne’s culture by helping them create a culture of trust and accountability. I loved helping their agency grow and be a place where people loved waking up and going to.

A year later, I was offered an opportunity to join Innocean USA with more responsibilities and an opportunity to be a part of a dynamic group of HR professionals. I was able to quickly learn more HR skills and dive into areas of HR that I am passionate about – diversity and Inclusion, employee relations, recruiting, and change management. Currently, through sheer determination, I am working in a field that I’m passionate about and love: Diversity and Inclusion at Live Nation as a Diversity and Inclusion Coordinator.



What (who) keeps you motivated? Do you have a personal motto?

My mom keeps me motivated. She continues to sacrifice so much so that I can have the experiences and opportunities that I am having. She left Fiji to travel to a place she had no idea about, had the courage to leave her abusive husband, and thrive when all the odds were against her.

Personal motto: “Why not?” I have always been told that I cannot achieve my goals because I am either undocumented, queer, a person of color, or an array of other reasons. I think sometimes we hold ourselves back because of our own subjugation and what we think is “normal.” I always try to figure out a way around challenges and push boundaries as much as I can.


What’s the most important lesson you’ve learned so far?

I have learned that mistakes are your best friend. They help you learn and get better at what you do. It shows that you are in the arena and fighting to succeed. I have just learned how to be accountable for my mistakes, learn from them, and move on.


What excites you most about this industry?

Simply, it's the people. I think that marketing, advertising, and entertainment attract some of the most amazing and diverse people. Everyone is so passionate about what they do and creative that it makes work fun. Also, each day is so different that it forces you to find creative solutions to business challenges.


Where is advertising heading? What do the next five years look like?

The industry is molding to adapt to the changing demographics of people within the United States and abroad. People are rejecting binaries, labels, and identities that pigeonhole them. The blanketed approach to sell or entertain generalized demographics is not going to work.

Over the next five years, I think that the industry will be trying to understand how they can cater to this new demographic and rebrand themselves. For example, so many women are telling their #MeToo story and some are taking it a step further to make sure that we are changing who we are as a society and industry. We are going to have to move forward together and embrace the differences that make us unique and who we are. People want organization to reflect their values and the diversity that they see around them.


Why are you involved with ThinkLA?

I love ThinkLA and value their collaborative frame of connecting advertising agencies and supplying them with tools to be successful. I have been working with them for over a year through their Diversity, Inclusion, and Gender (DIG) initiative to help create tools and resources for our industry and highlighting opportunities related to diversity, inclusion, and gender for our industry, and allowing us to harness the power of our unique backgrounds to the greater good.


What advice do you have for those just starting in advertising?

Network and let people know what you are passionate about. Since I started a career in HR, I went to most networking events and met as many people as I could. During every interaction, I found a way to tell everyone and anyone that would hear me that I want to practice diversity and inclusion. The industry is very small, everyone knows each other, and most people are open to mentoring and supporting you.


In Adobe's recent "Creativity’s Diversity Disconnect" study, which highlighted diversity issues in the advertising industry, 54% responded that the industry was “getting better compared to five years ago,” while 7% actually said it was getting worse. And a resounding number of minorities described lack of access and seeing themselves reflected in the workplace. As a member of ThinkLA’s DIG initiative, what are your thoughts on these findings? How can the industry improve?

I am not completely surprised by the results. There has been a shift to address issues around diversity, but more work needs to be done around inclusion. Diversity needs to be done in an authentic way without ignoring the intersectionality of individuals with the support of people from dominant groups. Diversity impacts all of us and everyone needs to be involved to address these issues within their respective organization. I wholeheartedly believe that – together – we can get to a place where people can bring their full selves to the workplace.


Any closing thoughts?

Be yourself – your whole self – your authentic self. It makes everything so much easier.



Tags:  #ThinkDIG  Advertising  Bupendra Ram  Career Advice  DACA  Diversity  Diversity in Advertising  Immigration  Innocean  Live Nation  Member Spotlight 

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Los Angeles Women of Color in Advertising

Posted By Emily Hope, Thursday, January 25, 2018
Updated: Thursday, February 8, 2018

We were inspired by The Drum's "More than 70 women of color who should be speaking at marketing conferences," and we wanted to start our own list of women of color who should (and hopefully will) be speaking at ThinkLA events in 2018.

We hope to add many more women to this list! You can help by submitting your nominations here:



"Women of color in gaming? How cool is that? Sam runs the Xbox account at Empower after a long career in the entertainment category with studios like New Line and Lions Gate. She's incredibly talented, creative, smart and funny!"



"Annie is an industry veteran who has worked on major multinational brands. She is a smart strategic thinker and leads with her head AND heart."



"Yumi is passionate and an expert leader in her field. She is valued by her team and clients, not just for her contributions, but for her personality that makes collaboration, creativity and innovation possible."



"Laura is a rock star! Super smart, super strategic, great sense of humor and dynamic personality."



"I consider Jennifer a leader in search marketing in Los Angeles previously running search for Saatchi and most recently Neo@Ogilvy. She's a great leader and partner in the space."



"Kat ran the DPSG business at Initiative and it's an incredibly tough account because they don't have the budgets of Coke and Pepsi and it's was a grueling planning schedule. The clients loved her at DPSG, I was surprised when they moved the account to NY because of Kat. She's incredibly smart. Was happy to see that Red Bull was smart enough to pick her up!"



"Rinku started her media career as a planner at RPA on Honda and has come full circle now as the Digital Media Director at RPA on Honda. She is a veteran in automotive marketing both Tier 2 and National and an incredibly smart marketer."



"Promoted to SVP almost two years ago Hwa-Shih is her own brand and the face of Palisades Media Group to the LA advertising community and she was instrumental in Palisades winning the coveted Netflix account."



"She's brilliant, huge background in media and marketing, multiple degrees, started her own company, also gives back. Agency and client side experience, and start-up experience."



"Michelle has great energy and can bring vim and excitement to the account side of advertising conversations. She has a background in food and graduated from Le Cordon Bleu, so working in branding for foods has been a natural course for her; currently she oversees Nestlé brands across NUSA and Nestlé Health Sciences Divisions. Dailey as a company also has an interesting story about redefining their corporate identity, taking a deep dive into agency culture, and reclaiming their soul after buying themselves back from holding company IPG."



"Bettina is a leader in the Entertainment Marketing industry for 20th Century Fox and the first to develop a non-profit organization founded in 2015 to ensure that the seminal digital film campaigns that help drive digital marketing into the lexicon of Hollywood are recovered and preserved, as well as to insure that the incredible campaigns of today and tomorrow are not lost to time."



"Ariana is the best mentor I have ever had - she is a diligent, highly knowledgeable and determined individual. She has a knack for managing clients' social media needs, while giving the best thoughtful recommendations."



"Cilmara is incredibly smart and connected. She knows the space well and provides informed and insightful perspective on brands, communications, and the industry in general."



"Bernice is passionate and an expert leader in her field. She is valued by her team and clients, not just for her contributions, but for her personality that makes collaboration, creativity and innovation possible."



"Also a force in the entertainment category, Darlene was also on the publisher side and part of strategy for Uproxx and worked on some of the amazing programs they did there like the Honda Uncharted program that was showcased at ThinkLA's Auto Breakfast. She has the perspective both from the agency side and publisher side.

Darlene is also extremely philanthropic, which gives her an interesting perspective of the world. She has been centering her travel and vacations around this and was recently accepted to a volunteer program in Uganda where she will be living and working with AIDS children."


"She's probably one of the only women of color that started her own influencer management company after being an early executive at Machinima and Collective Digital Studio. Her company manages some of the top social influencers on YouTube." 



"Besides being lovely, she's been in the entertainment community in Los Angeles forever and I don't ever remember her being on a panel and she should be. Recently I've seen her behind many really creative executions, including viral/social/custom projects for NBC TV."



"Jennifer has immense knowledge in the digital marketing space. From her roots in PR to creative content strategy to influencer partnerships is what makes her a well-rounded digital marketer." 



"Jennifer is a force in Los Angeles in the entertainment category, starting with Sony, then leading Paramount at MEC and now STX and Horizon. Jennifer is a favorite in this industry for her creativity, professionalism and being a great partner."



"Indree has worked on the agency side, publisher side, and social side, so she has a strong base across the board. She also has worked in NY and London and I find her adventures admirable but also add to her experience." 



"You mean beyond beating stage four breast cancer and becoming an inspiration to many women in this industry? Nicole is another veteran in the LA entertainment community having run media and New Line and Focus Features, now running her own consulting business working with brands like Amazon Originals."



"She had a very successful career in PR, specializing in Hispanic, and she is currently a few months away from completing a degree in production, directing and writing at the prestigious Art Center in Pasadena. She also runs a blogger collective and is a social influencer." 



Bernadette is President of one of the only Latina-owned production companies in the advertising industry nationwide; works across both advertising and entertainment in Hollywood. She's been tracking Super Bowl commercial diversity stats since 2015."



"Carron works at the intersection of branding, selling, pop culture, and technology. She prides herself on being a change agent, and helps brands step into new industries and elevate their current perception with the target market."



"Kristina “KJ” Jenkins is #15 on The Drum list. She leads Zambezi’s strategy team, helping brands explore trends in creativity and culture, tapping into her forte as a pop culture expert. KJ’s cultural insights have played a key role in Zambezi's 2016 One Show Gold Pencil and Cannes Gold Lion winning campaign The Uncommon Force for STANCE™, Star Wars limited-edition collection, as well as TaylorMade’s The Wait, which was honored with a Sports Clio, Autotrader’s millennial-themed campaign featuring the spots The Journey, One Search , Concert and Kick and the wild experiential street & social media event Driven By Style."



"Sheila is a pioneer of online campaigns targeted to people of color." 



"Rahiel has an ability to put people at ease and has immense knowledge of social media marketing for fortune 500 companies as well as start-ups."



"A passionate, charismatic and caring leader, Carlene has transformed businesses throughout her career. Since joining Conill, she has honed a distinctive practice area that is increasingly important for brands in a conversation-driven marketplace.

Carlene’s inclusive approach inspires collaboration among colleagues and agency partners alike. She's a true champion of mentorship and development. Her impact on people and culture extends well beyond the bounds of her team."



"Mellissa has created a company that specializes in the production of top quality commercials, features, episodic TV, webcasts, and documentaries earning her a reputation for excellence and efficiency."



"Connie is hilarious! She brings a natural energy and enthusiasm to her presentations, and she knows the media space well."



"Shari's commitment to bringing diversity and inclusion into the advertising field is remarkable, her energy and passion make her goals happen, and that's what makes her special."



"Rhonda is super smart and approachable, and she knows a ton about both the digital media landscape and Tier 2 automotive advertising."


"Brenda is first-generation Mexican American and a USC alumna who has done amazing things in her communications career. After a successful career in journalism she now oversees the marketing and media efforts for the largest voting jurisdiction in the country here in LA County. She is responsible for overseeing all of the marketing efforts to get Angelenos educated about voting rights and options. Her awesome marketing and ad campaigns have been recognized by PRSA both in Orange County and LA."


"Sam is articulate, personable, and extremely insightful. She brings a thoughtful and pragmatic approach to a very complicated and ever-evolving space."


"Leisha is incredibly smart and is overseeing a leading edge discipline on behalf of two major automotive brands."


"Christina is immersed in the landscape of multicultural advertising, and can provide a nuanced and very experienced point of view on Hispanic perspectives and how to advertise to Hispanic consumers. She also has a robust social media presence of her own."


"Clarissa knows the art production space well, and has worked on brands as diverse as Honda, Apple, and more. She is well connected with photographers around the world. In her spare time, she is also a cabaret singer!"


"Kanya is brilliant! She knows the analytics space inside and out and is great at making complicated data maps easy to understand."



"As an Asian American woman in the field of media and PR Deanne has broken through more barriers than most. She has spent her entire career at big agencies continuing to rise in spite of the difficult fields she chose. Additionally, as a leader she is so connected to her staff, championing them at every turn and is a leader in the industry as it relates to creativity, client relations and how we stay ahead in this every changing landscape. Her ideas are endless."

Tags:  #ThinkDIG  DIG  DIG Initiative  diversity  gender  inclusion  Multiculturalism  Speakers  Women of Color in Advertising 

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Global Wednesday: January

Posted By Emily Hope, Wednesday, January 3, 2018
It's big (ad) world, but we aim to make it feel even smaller by highlighting inventive, global ads, monthly, that are breaking the mold from the mundane. To capture that global spirit, we will feature inspiration from outside of the U.S. and sometimes from brands that we've never even heard of!
ThinkLA couldn't be more grateful for Luis Camano, ThinkLA Board Member and Head of Innovation and Brand Activation LC/BA, for being our Global Warrior and bringing these to our attention. We hope that Global Wednesdays will inspire our members as much as it does us.

1. Here’s how a Peruvian company turned the much maligned fruitcake (or those who bake them) into a Holiday-stress reducer.


2. From Germany, a color became a portal and a vehicle for incredible entertainment.

3. In India, candy solved a problem for both customers and retailers, becoming an accepted type of currency.


Tags:  advertising  Global Ads  Global Wednesday  international advertising  international brands  Luis Camano 

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2018 Marketing and Advertising Predictions

Posted By Emily Hope, Wednesday, January 3, 2018

What's in store for advertising and marketing in 2018? Here's a few thoughts from the ThinkLA community.


"I predict the continued rise of women into the C-suite, as our skills, strengths and values become increasingly critical to the business success of our agencies, our holding companies, and our clients.”
Kristi VandenBosch, Chief Digital Officer, MXM, and ThinkLA Board of Directors Co-President


"2018 will see VR become more widely accepted not only as entertainment, but as a valuable consumer training tool, especially when it comes to site walk-throughs for travel and commercial applications. It will become a viable first step toward fully immersive environments for all people." 
- Don Lupo, Director of Content and Marketing, ThinkLA


"I envision more small and mid-tier agencies following suit of larger agencies, by taking control of their programmatic media buying, and bringing it in-house to utilize a self-service DSP. More advertisers will be looking towards meaningful KPI's - such as offline sales measurement, while traditional KPI's - such as CTR and VCR, will continue to become less relevant."
- Sunny Behniwal, Senior Account Executive, Adelphic, a Viant Inc. Company, and ThinkLA Young Professionals Council Member


"2017 forced both brands and agencies to think hard about their values, whether in their responses to the new political climate or to the#MeToomovement. In 2018, people won't be able to hide behind messaging. Marketers will have to decide what they believe, act upon it—and be judged accordingly.”
Jeff Sweat, Founder, Mister Sweatand ThinkLA Board of Directors Member


"I think we'll see a rise in the "micro-influencer". Given the crowded digital arena, brands will need to have an authentic message to break through the noise, to engage and interact with their costumers. The use of influencers, partners, customers (perhaps through testimonials), and even showcasing employees, will all be relatable ways for brands to tell their stories."
Emily Hope, Communications Manager, ThinkLA


"Deloitte or Accenture will make a bid to acquire one of the four largest ad agency holding companies.”
Eric Johnson, President and Founder, Ignitedand ThinkLA Board of Directors Member


"Search will be an x-factor for premium publishers in scaling traffic to quality (not to mention measurable, viewable, safe) content. Where social has long been the dominant source of publisher traffic, a trending uptick in search referral traffic could mean significant monetization opportunities for publishers."
- Claire Thompson, Senior Strategist, VICE Media, and ThinkLA Young Professionals Council Member


"Due to the investments companies like Google and Facebook are making, I believe augmented reality will be adopted by the masses in 2018. We’ll see brands trying to navigate their way through the immersive technology space to see which tech suits their brand/product, and I believe that AR will be that platform."
John Yi, Communications Director, Strategy, MBMGand ThinkLA Young Professionals Council Member


"Everyone is on the "content" bandwagon but very few are doing it correctly and effectively. For example, a few CMOs I’ve spoken to, are taking cause marketing in-house to integrate them into their brands, to start putting emphasis on quality communications."


"Traditional marketing campaigns will be replaced by Modular Marketing. We will see less identical campaigns, more modular framework for communication. This will allow marketers to be more flexible and able to replace themes, offers, messages within the framework."
Luis Camano, Founder and Chief Creative Officer, Key Activationsand ThinkLA Board of Directors Member



"2018 will be a year where all the things we have started in years past, will become more relevant and refined. Ideas, strategies, data, content is all growing to be more agile. We'll see movements be mobile. And, I don’t mean that device that is attached to us at all times, I mean movements that are going new places, transitioning, evolving. We will see adaptive strategies, policies and people, doing things in new more ‘mobile ways’.  


Life/work balance (vs. work/life) will be more mainstream as people take life/work on the road, and the increase in collaborate workspaces will continue to change the way the workforce operates. This attitude can be seen in how #MeToo is growing to evolve into bigger conversations, such as #TimesUp.


We will see immersive experiences that people will travel for; to interact with brands, art and culture in a single multifaceted event (like 29Rooms, DesertX, Museum of Ice Cream). Big data will finally be activated in a way that can be used in a meaningful way for the consumer, as we now know how to both use it for targeting and content curation."

- Brook Hauge, Strategy Supervisor, Canvas Worldwide, and ThinkLA Young Professionals Council Co-President



"I’m being a bit selfish here by focusing on a trend that will benefit independent agencies like ours. Although large holding companies will maintain a large share of the market, independent agencies will continue to position themselves as viable alternatives to larger agency networks and win accounts. The stable independent agencies will build enough scale to attract talent, take on more business and provide a high level of service to advertisers."
- Zach Rosenberg, President, MBMG, and ThinkLA Board of Directors Member 




Tags:  2018  acquisitions  advertising  Brand Marketer  earch  marketing  media  micro-influencers  Mobile movements  modular marketing  Quality Content  uture of  uture of Advertising 

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Fireside Chats with Jun Group

Posted By Emily Hope, Monday, December 18, 2017

In partnership with Jun Group, we set out to find out what top marketers are doing to attract talent and stay ahead of the curve, win new business, and set Los Angeles apart.


Adam Tabachnikoff, Senior Vice President, Global Marketing, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf

“The easy part and the fun part about being a CMO is doing videos, its going on photoshoots—but when I walk into my board meetings, what really becomes sexy is the analytics and the numbers. The prettiest POP (point of purchase display), the best social media, —whether its a JPEG or a short video—are fun to present, but what really goes well, is when we have the analytics and data to show what the ROI was...that we actually drove incremental traffic and profitable sales." 


Chris Athens: Associate Media Director, Maxus

“People are not necessarily only converting digitally; in fact, the majority of conversions happen on-air. Breaking down that conversion silo is something that we’ve been trying to tackle with certain partners. Understanding where people are watching, how they’re consuming [video content], and then trying that back to the ad exposure."


Lisa Nichols, Chief Data Officer, Partner, Bloom Ads Global Media Group

"Finding the right people is very challenging. Today, we look to people who have a coding background, people who have mathematical brain, people that understand statistical relevance. But on the other side, talent still must be creative.”


Claire Thompson: Senior Strategist, Vice Media

“We take a very hard line on what we feel is ‘crossing a line’ and making it unclear that something is an advertisement. If we weren’t being so protective of our brand and ensuring that we are not tricking our readers, then we lose integrity with our audience… which is precisely why we are successful and is why we are attractive to advertisers in the first place.”


Don Lupo: Director of Content and Marketing, ThinkLA

“What’s concerning is something that we call agency 3.0. Agencies have to be far more nimble than they were, they have to offer a full set of services and experiences, that maybe you [the agency] did not provide directly in the past. Digital strategists, social media strategists, information architecture and UX (user experience specialists) which is not always something that an agency hired for. The agency has evolved.”


Joey Adler: Chief Executive Officer, Carve Nutrition, Founder, Department of Good

"My motto is: I don’t want to do anything in business that doesn’t support the community. The Department of Good is that. It’s a platform, and it will be the first time I believe that a platform will work with small independent business (focusing on brick and mortar) in a collaborative way. We want to support the small independent brick and mortar store. We want to support community organizations. We want to support people with innovative ideas. And we want to support the consumer to have an experience and to be part of something [community focused]. And we have give back up and down the supply chain.”


Paul Pastor: Executive Vice President, Strategy, Revenue and Operations, Discovery Channel

“Pulling the entire story out of our consumer base across multiple platforms is not easy. What we’ve been able to do is work with our own first party data, with third party vendors, and then with the Nielsen’s and Comscores of the world to put together a comprehensive view of consumers at various stages across different platforms. This informs the content investment we make and how we think about the partnerships we have with advertisers.”


Stephanie Friend, Associate Integrated Media Director, Bloom Ads Global Media Group

“We’re making big movements forward to establish dashboards that link up to all of our digital partners and our DMP. We find the best way to attribute [business ROI] to each medium. We are also in the business of testing — i.e. just TV versus just radio, versus just digital, and showing how that really compares to a truly fully integrated campaign.”

Tags:  #ThinkMembers  Brand Marketers  Fireside Chats  Jun Group  LA Advertising  Marketing  Member Profiles  ThinkLA 

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