163: Are you creative director material?

Most creatives aspire to become creative director one day. And most creatives believe they have the chops to lead a creative department. But making the leap from art director or copywriter into a leadership role takes more than a promotion. Our guest this week is an old friend, TJ Bennett, owner and creative director at […]

The case for waiting to start your ad career.

It’s just a thought, but after my last speaking gig with Mark Jenson’s Advertising Strategy and Creative Development class at the Hubbard School of Journalism and Mass Communications at the U of Minnesota, it may have some merit. Mark uses my book on the creative brief as required reading, so he invited me to speak […]

E103: Creative Review—McDonald’s OOH by DDB New Zealand.

Airs February 1, 2023 Henry Gomez and I exchange our views on a new OOH campaign for McDonald’s by DDB New Zealand. We haven’t disagreed about much lately, but today we take opposing views. DDB New Zealand’s work brings a searing spotlight to the issue of advertising’s powerful role as an influencer. Henry and I […]

When we pretend we’re not influencers.

In our work as brand builders, there is always a line drawn somewhere between good taste and bad taste, and always this line is arbitrary. But is there also a line between right and wrong when it comes to our work for brands? Can a brand message be more than just in bad taste, but […]

E102: A conversation with Bob Harrison, creative director at Luckie & Company.

Airs January 25, 2023 Bob Harrison is an old friend and colleague from my Minneapolis days. He worked for me as a copywriter when I ran the British Airways NA loyalty programs advertising business. Today, he’s a respected and award-winning creative director/writer at Luckie & Company in Birmingham, AL. And I could not be more […]

E101: A conversation with Mara Rada, chief strategist at Feral Corp.

Airs January 18, 2023 On our way from episode 100, we plunge ahead into our next 100 episodes! Today we bring you a fascinating conversation with Mara Rada, chief strategist at Feral Inc. In a short phrase, Mara and her team launch brands from scratch. Most of us in Adland work on existing brands. Mara […]

What I want in a creative brief.

I’m speaking now as a creative, a former copywriter and creative director. I’m speaking as one of the people to whom the creative brief is directed, for whom the brief is written, of whom much is expected once I have this document in my hands. In my hands and my art director partner’s hands. It’s […]

E100: Our 100th episode! Woo-hoo!

Airs January 11, 2023 We can hardly believe it, but Henry and I have reached 100 episodes of The Brief Bros. Almost two years of weekly jawing about creative briefs and chatting up guests. Plus the occasional creative review. Today, Henry and I share our thoughts about what we’ve accomplished in the past couple years […]

Who decides when a creative brief is “inspiring”?

Allow me to share with you a recurring sentiment I hear during my creative brief workshops when I show marketers and account people examples of well-written creative briefs. I hear this comment often enough to have made note of it even if I don’t hear it at every training. When I present one of these […]

E99: What to think about before you write a brief.

Airs January 4, 2023 What should newbie and veteran brief writers alike consider before they put fingers to keyboard or pen to paper? I put this question to Henry and he gave us some valuable thought-starters. A creative brief is a thinking document, not a mindless form to fill out. Join us on this episode […]

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