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After graduation, Winter break came upon me and I finally had time to myself to grow. I wanted to keep busy with things I had learned from work and school, and there was no better way to do that than with a good cause.
Levi was a great friend, and my high school sweetheart many years ago. When Levi comitted suicide last year, it was very hard for me to deal with, as we had just begun to rekindle our friendship. A year after his death, I still miss him and wish there was something I could have done. After many countless nights thinking about him, talking to his friends and family, I realized there was something I could do NOW.
The Kristin Brooks Hope Center, is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization that focuses on suicide prevention, awareness, and education. The organization is greatly supported by Post Secret, which is how I found out about them. Hopeline is the name of their suicide prevention hotline. The hotline is open 24 hours a day for anyone to call when they’re thinking of suicide or know someone who is. (1.800.SUICIDE)
I’d like to think that if Levi had known about the number/organization, or more about how to deal with depression he would still be around. I also dont want anymore people to take their own lives because suicide not only affects the victim, but also the victim’s friends and family. 90% of people who commit suicide have depression or another diagnosable mental illness and/or substance abuse disorder. This kind of suffering is unnecessary. Depression is treatable and as a result, suicide is preventable.
I then had the idea that I wanted to raise money for Hopeline, and donate the money in Levi’s name. I thought an easy way to do this while also raising awareness of the organization and suicide prevention was to carol in the neighborhood he grew up in. Not only would we be contributing to a good cause, but it would bring his friends and family close together for support and solidarity. His best friend loved my idea, and so we began to reach out to friends, family, and the neighborhood Levi grew up in. We set a date, made a FB event page, and began to promote the event. Countless phone calls were made to people who went to Levi’s school, who lived in Rock Creek, and others who had also been affected by suicide. A day before the event I placed flyers in the neighborhood and walked around talking to people outside their houses.
9 people came out with us that night to sing songs and ask for donations. We caroled for 1 whole hour, avoiding many houses with “No Soliciting” signs and were still able to raise $191.
We were all so happy and blown away by everyone’s generosity. Some of the houses we sang at remembered who Levi was, or knew someone who had committed suicide and wanted to help out. Days later, I sent off the checks to KBHC and donated the cash online.
While this isn’t neccessarily adwork, I felt like posting this on my blog because it demonstrates my ability to use my advertising/marketing expertise for good and made me realize I have a new fond appreciation for cause marketing.
I was so happy by the turn out of this event and know Levi and his family are happy too. For anyone reading this who attended or helped me out either for this event or when I was dealing with his loss, Thank you, from the bottom of my heart.
You’ve gotta love early print advertisements from the 1960′s. Why? Because this is when advertising transformed and spawned a creative revolution, which is perfectly summed up in Fast Company’s “The Future of Advertising.”
Like a beetle preserved in amber, the practice of advertising has sat virtually unchanged for the last half-century. Before 1960, ad making was a solitary practice. Copywriters toiled away on words to pitch a product, then handed them off to an art director who translated them into an illustration or photograph. Creative director Bill Bernbach (the B in DDB) changed all that when he recognized that pairing wordsmith and artist could spark genius. That simple move ignited the industry’s creative revolution, raising the practice of advertising from sleazy salesmanship to some permutation of art.
Ahh yes, Bill Bernbach, best known for his work with Volkswagen. No one could compete with Bernbach, which made agencies pay more attention to the role of the Creative Director. His work also led to agencies and clients developing a better understanding of the value and importance that art and copy has within advertising.
But wait there’s more! Found this site on Reddit a while back, which showcases a lot of ads from the 1960′s. Some well done, some blatantly sexist, and some with interesting messaging. These are a few that stood out to me the most, mixed with a few from my Pinterest board. Take a look!
I can’t believe september was my last post! I really need to write more, just have been super busy and slightly injured. Recovering from a skull fracture, will hopefully be all healed soon. Besides that, I’ve had a tremendous amount of work to do for my internship at FIR, and the National Campaigns class I’m in. This weekend will be devoted to making a souvenir plans book and making games for an event that Guayaki is hosting on campus. Brain, dont fail me now…
Also, portfolio is up! Check it out and tell me what you guys think.
From my Creative Strategy class, but still relevant.
Although this is an attack on an ad, I thought it was still related to class.
Sometimes advertising can go too far. After talking about ethical advertising in tuesday’s class it got me thinking about the fashion industry and the trouble women have with body image. Even though I still buy clothes from H&M and stores like it, it does not make it right for them to hire models with eating disorders who promote a distorted view of the female form. It is nice to know that when a company goes too far, there are people who are going to react (and react proactively).
A street artist in Hamburg recently has been going around putting the photoshop toolbar on H&M displays around the city. What a brilliant concept! I saw this on buzz feed and had to share. So funny, so true.
I got into a huge debate over QR codes with Tim Christy when I applied for the FIR internship. Guess it payed off, I got the job. But Tim was right, a lot of companies don’t use them effectively. What the code leads to, where and how it’s used are all important factors when using the technology. Here’s how emart from Korea used QR codes in one of the most creative ways I have ever seen them implemented before.
More blogging later, gotta finish finals. D:
So like I said in my last post, my advertising account management class is giving me the opportunity to visit different ad agencies in the Portland area. The first one we visited was CMD Agency, which I missed, but I did get to go to HMH Agency!
Established in 1978, Ed Herinckx is the current president and the one who showed us around. The agency has a nice layout. I appreciate ad agencies that take the time to present a nice design and showcase creative work and art. As soon as you walk in, there is a modern looking lobby with inspiring quotes on the wall. There was also a theme of using a deep red in their office, not entirely sure why but it made the place stimulating and inviting.
HMH is pretty small compared to ad agencies as a whole. Their team is comprised of about 50-60 employees with offices in Portland, Bend OR, and Charlotte NC. They are a full service agency with plenty of experience and expertise. Their work includes major brands like Subway, Nike, and Doc Martens, as well as working with small Portland businesses like Habitat for Humanity Portland, NW Natural, and Oregon State Parks and Rec.
For me personally, their most inspiring work is the stuff they do for Freightliner Trucks. My dad recently retired from this company and their work reflects the craftsmanship, dedication, awe, and beauty that makes Freightliner such a great brand and truck company. Ed said during the tour, “Clients love agencies who love their products”, and when looking at their work with Freightliner, you can tell it was something they really enjoyed making.
It was at this agency where I learned about a new position in advertising called a “creative technologist”, but I will save that for another post. I also just got back from a tour at R2C Group, a direct response marketing firm here in Portland, which I will write up about soon. Keep checking my blog this summer to learn more about the amazing ad agencies here in Portland. We will be checking out Wieden and Kennedy next week! :D
2 more terms left in school AND IM DONE! Finally starting to figure out what I want to do with my advertising degree, now I just gotta save up some money and make my dreams come true.
A few updates:
- Got accepted for the FIR internship program at PSU
- Working events/promotions for G+Local and Zagat
- Taking BA495 and MKTG444 this summer
- Still single
- Planning on a trip to San Francisco and Tulum, Mexico late august/september
I LOVE my MKTG444 class. Its all about advertising account management and has given me the opportunity to see how many different ad agencies in the portland area operate. I learned about a new position called a “Creative Technologist” that many ad firms hire, and I think I want to go that route, or eventually become an Art Director. We shall see…