What is the most creative advertising idea you’ve seen recently?

I’m always a fan of the unexpected, and something that’s born of authentic human emotion. ‘Likes’ you can measure, but something that you feel in your gut—loves—that type of impact is invaluable. The recent work for the anti-self-bullying campaign from Monica Lewinsky and Mischief is a great example of this. Redirecting the negative self-talk that we all so commonly use on ourselves, to someone you love is incredibly powerful and painful at the same time. It’s uncomfortable to watch and drives home the point so well. Having worked with Greg Hahn, I’m always excited to see what he’s inspiring in others, and what they’re putting out into the world. Nothing average. 

What website(s) do you use most regularly? 

Besides checking the weather (still getting used to Nashville climate), I like to keep track of what’s going on in the world on Seriously. Satire is essential to an unbiased view of our current culture and events.

What’s the most recent piece of tech that you’ve bought?

Probably my fifth pair of AirPods. I lose them on a quarterly basis. Also, I’m actually really into my new garden hose timer. Not only is it great for water conservation, but it allows me to water the landscape at a time most beneficial to the plants. No shame in my home improvement game.

What product could you not live without? 

Probably the little handheld laptop that doubles as my camera, wallet, organiser, flashlight, bank and home stereo. I could certainly live without it, but could I really live without it? 

What’s the best film you’ve seen over the last year? 

The Whale. That film was so amazing and transcendent. The family drama at the centre of that film is a 10,000-year-old story that’s simultaneously tragic and relatable. Brendan Frasier’s performance was stunning.

What film do you think everyone should have seen? 

Anything made by Terrence Malick. Also, Sufjan Stevens just dropped his new album Javelin that I’ve been loving over the past couple of weeks. It’s truly a life-defining musical experience. As are most of his works. No, it’s not a feature film, but it conjures up a visual world that is more or less like a home movie, depending on your interpretation of each track.

What’s your preferred social media platform?

Instagram is definitely my favourite. It’s inherently creative but, like any social media platform, it can be a distraction if you’re not laser-focused on what you’re looking for out of your time on it. I’m all about dogs doing human things and vice versa.

What’s your favourite TV show? 

Mad Men. Art imitates life. While the reality of advertising today is nothing like the show, the roots of our profession and some of the situations are just as relevant now as they were then. The character building is great. I love a show where everyone has a bit of an antihero and you’re still rooting for them. Again, probably like any agency that’s trying to do amazing work.

What’s your favourite podcast?

I’m a big fan of the Smartless podcast with Jason Bateman, Sean Hayes and Will Arnett. The episodes are all really interesting but always have a solid dose of humour. It’s like listening to three buddies having a drink together, but in a classroom. The episode with James Cameron was - James Cameron! 

What show/exhibition has most inspired you recently? 

I had a chance to attend Desert X, a free outdoor art exhibition in Palm Desert in 2017. It combines architecture, sculpture, paintings and landscape sculptures. I was lucky enough to attend its inaugural showing, and it’s really grown in popularity since. 

If you could only listen to one music artist from now on, who would it be? 

John Coltrane. A Love Supreme is more or less a religion. 

If there was one thing you could change about the advertising industry, what would it be? 

Both marketers and brands are too obsessed with attention. While getting likes, views and clicks is great (and does help drive brand awareness), audiences are really looking for brands to stand for something in today’s world, so attention isn't always enough. Standing for something – conviction – is what we always are striving for, both for our clients and as an agency. Be the first to do something, not the second. 

Who or what has most influenced your career? 

In addition to my mom, and my wife – who have both influenced who I am as a person in every way – Pat Fallon really taught me a lot about the importance of creating an agency culture built around outsmarting the competition, not outspending them. 

Tell us one thing about yourself that most people won’t know.

I’m deathly afraid of spiders. But I’m getting better at making peace with them. I now just think of them as roommates. And I feel obligated to be a good roommate to them.