STUDENT SPOTLIGHT: How to Land Your Face in Times Square at 22

Temerlin’s own Kayla Griffis (’20) just returned from New York City as a member of the 2020 American Advertising Federation’s (AAF) Most Promising Multicultural Student (MPMS) program.

The MPMS class is comprised of exceptional advertising talent across various disciplines who will lend their creativity and voices to inspire a more inclusive workforce as they start their professional, post-college, careers. This program affords students an inside look at the advertising industry where they participate in agency immersions, professional development, The Building Bridges for Our Future Student Awards Luncheon, and an exclusive recruiter’s expo.

“Each year, I have the pleasure of personally mentoring and watching the students simply blossom into the stars that they are. This experience gives multicultural students the confidence and reassurance that they belong in all spaces. The program also shows that our partners are trying to be intentional about bringing diverse talent into the industry. Thanks to Clear Channel Outdoor, this year, the faces of all 50 students made it on to several New York City billboards. Hands down, one of my top 3 moments this year was witnessing their faces in real-time when they saw the billboards. If at any point, they did not feel like they worked hard enough to be selected as Most Promising or believed that they “belonged,” everyone in Times Square sure did! I am extremely proud of these students and always look forward to witnessing the amazing things they will soon accomplish” explains Melony Hughes, Senior Manager of the AAF Mosaic Center & Education Services.

How Do I Apply?

Opportunities like this propel students into the advertising industry and our faculty are happy to take the time to champion our students to achieve these awards. The MPMS application goes live early each Fall. It consists of a resume, two essay questions, a personal tagline, and a recommendation letter from an advisor/mentor who is an AAF Member. Griffis adds, “I highly encourage students to apply to MPMS and other programs like this to get a better understanding of where they want to end up and to become better prepared for when they enter the workforce. My biggest takeaway is learning that I still have time to decide what I want to do, and nothing is set in stone.”

Learn more about the program here.

FACULTY SPOTLIGHT: Dr. La Ferle Attends Global CMO Growth Council Meeting

Dr. Carrie La Ferle, Marriott Endowed Professor of Ethics & Culture, participated in the Global CMO Growth Council meeting last week in NYC examining Brand Experience, Creativity, & Media. The meeting focused on putting people first to drive growth through innovation, insights, creativity, experiential, and media.

Over the past two years, the ANA, Cannes Lions, and the Global CMO Growth Council have identified four priorities for driving industry growth: 1) Data, Technology, and Measurement; 2) Talent and Marketing Organization; 3) Brand Experience, Creativity, and Media; and 4) Society and Sustainability.

Anheuser-Busch graciously hosted the event last week and several CMOs cutting across multiple companies joined from Ernst & Young and Moet Hennessy to Subway, Stoli Group and Viacom as well as from Cannes Lions. Marcel Marcondes, U.S. CMO Anheuser-Busch provided a great overview of how Anheuser-Busch is working to drive growth by learning and listening more to consumers while also diversifying their offerings. Spencer Gordon, VP, Digital for Anheuser-Busch shared some of the recent wins that were driven by starting small and local to ensure relevance, using social media, then listening to reactions, and broadening the scope when reactions were good.

Future meetings are planned over the next few months across the four priorities leading up to Cannes Lions, where the Global CMO Growth Council originated in 2018.

FACULTY SPOTLIGHT: Can Design Help Combat Homelessness?

Evictions are a serious national issue and extreme weather events displace thousands, houselessness is one of our society’s biggest challenges. Professor Willie Baronet is excited to participate in the new exhibition Houseless where Alaska’s Anchorage Museum invites visitors to considers ways design can contribute to solutions.

Design thinking helps break down complex problems and integrate new information and opinions while acknowledging there is no one right answer. The Houseless project provides a space for awareness, education, and creative problem-solving around housing security supporting individuals and communities in problem-solving together.

Willie Baronet began WE ARE ALL HOMELESS in 1993 due to the awkwardness he felt when he pulled up to an intersection and encountered a person holding a sign, asking for help. Like many, Baronet wrestled with whether or not he was doing good by giving them money. “Mostly I struggled with my moral obligations, and how my own choices contributed in conscious or unconscious ways to the poverty I was witnessing. I struggled with the unfairness of the lives people are born into, the physical, mental and psychological handicaps. In my struggle, I avoided eye contact with those on the street, unwilling to really see them, and in doing so avoided seeing parts of myself. That began to change once I began asking them if they would sell their signs.” Baronet’s relationship to the homeless has been powerfully and permanently altered. The conversations and connections have left an indelible mark on his heart. He explains “I still wrestle with personal questions regarding generosity, goodness, compassion, and guilt. And what it means to be homeless: practically, spiritually, emotionally? Is home a physical place, a building, a structure, a house? Or is it a state of being, a sense of safety, of being provided for, of identity? I see these signs as signposts of my own journey, inward and outward, of reconciling my own life with my judgments about those experiencing homelessness.”

Opening night, WE ARE ALL HOMELESS at the Anchorage Museum

Houseless is an installation of hundreds of the signs Baronet has purchased over the past two decades. “This is the largest WE ARE ALL HOMELESS exhibit to date, and I’m honored to be a part of Houseless at the Anchorage Museum. I love how this project is integrated into the classes I teach at SMU, where many of my students have volunteered to help AND have been inspired to start their own purpose-driven projects, which contributes to our desire to teach principled advertising. I’m also very excited to be working with students from SMU’s Human Rights program led by Rick Halperin. Some of his students have volunteered to work on the WE ARE ALL HOMELESS non-profit impact campaign in order to meet their class requirements. I always love finding ways to collaborate across disciplines at SMU” explains Baronet.

To learn more about this initiative please visit http://www.weareallhomeless.org/ and watch Willie’s award-winning documentary Signs of Humanity which is available to stream on Amazon.

 

INDUSTRY CONNECTIONS: Preparing Students for their Careers with StrengthsFinder

The Clifton StrenghtsFinder is a scientific 177 question assessment that measures an individual’s talents resulting in a unique “thumbprint” analysis of strengths. Understanding the sequence of these strengths is one of the keys to finding and managing a rewarding career. This week, Professor Amber Benson (right), a Gallop-Certified Strengths Coach, led Professor Sandi Edgar’s Advertising Business Communications course through a basic StrengthsFinder workshop. Here, students were guided through various exercises to understand their top strengths and how they may manifest in various aspects of their personal and professional lives. This insight provides an understating of motivations,  interactions with others, and the types of team members needed to compliment a person’s strengths. The students will use their individual strengths to explore personal branding with the ultimate goal to become more effective in interviews, networking, and the workplace. This project culminates with the Temerlin Advertising Institute career fair in March. Email to learn more: sandi@smu.edu.

FACULTY RESEARCH: Engaging Luxury Brand Consumers

Luxury brands have increased their social engagement by investing heavily in interesting brand value propositions and captive storytelling. Yet, research to understand the mechanisms of luxury content marketing in brand building is still scarce. Drawing on value perceptions, brand prestige/exclusivity, customer intimacy, and brand loyalty, Dr. Xie’s research proposes and tests the perceived values of luxury content marketing on social media (i.e., YouTube) which shapes brand loyalty among luxury consumers. Dr. Quan Xie’s research “Deconstructing Luxury Content Marketing on YouTube: The Roles of Content Values in Brand Prestige, Brand Exclusivity, Customer Intimacy and Brand Loyalty” was recently accepted by the International Communication Association (ICA) Annual Conference to be presented at the Gold Coast, Australia this May. The conference accepted only 44.27% of the papers and panels that were submitted this year!

INDUSTRY CONNECTIONS: Students Rank Super Bowl Ads

By Kaleb Mulugeta

This Tuesday prospective and current advertising students gathered to rank and review Super Bowl LIV ads. Think of it as a Super Bowl party, two days after the Super Bowl, with no actual Super Bowl. Just commercials. An advertising student’s dream come true.

“The annual Super Bowl Ad Off is the perfect forum for both ad majors and non-ad students to discuss the most talked-about commercials of the year. One of the most important steps that someone interested in advertising can take is to expose themselves to as much work as possible. Not only that but developing a taste for what is good vs great vs what misses the mark is essential when entering this competitive field. Ad Club’s meetings provide the perfect place to discuss, learn and grow” explains Ad Club President Allie Hartman. Students gave their two cents on whether the ads were appropriate for the respective brands, how effective they were, and collectively raised an eyebrow at #BabyNut.

A poll at the end of the night crowned these spots as the best of the bunch:

  1. GoogleLoretta 
  2. AlexaBefore Alexa
  3. JeepGroundhog Day

The most disliked ad of the game goes to OlayMake Space for Women. It began as a strong empowering statement for women but they threw away everything in the last 3 seconds by using the “a woman makes a silly mistake” stereotype when an unknown button is pressed which ejects the astronauts from the space shuttle. They almost had it, too bad.

 Learn more about Ad Club and join here.

STUDENT SPOTLIGHT: Introducing the 2020 SMU NSAC Adobe Team

By Kaleb Mulugeta

SMU’s Temerlin Advertising Institute is home to three undergraduate advertising tracks specializing in their respective disciplines: Creative, Digital Media Strategy and Strategic Brand Management. Mimicking an advertising agency setting, NSAC unites the three tracks to collaborate on a multi-media marketing plan while providing national exposure for students to land internships and full-time opportunities. Hillery Lemon ’19 recounts her time on last year’s winning team as “A really valuable experience. Especially as a creative student, because I got to work with the other advertising specializations and see what it really takes to put a campaign together. It’s so satisfying seeing your work do well!”

The National Student Advertising Competition (NSAC) is the premier collegiate competition founded by the American Advertising Federation (AAF). Led by Professor Amber Benson, each team is asked to devise a completely integrated campaign and pitches their work to savvy advertising professionals which are judged at the district, semi-final, and national levels. Prior NSAC clients include Ocean Spray, Snapple, Nissan, Coca-Cola, State Farm (and more). This year it’s Adobe. Yes, that Adobe.

Collaboration, presentation, and strategic planning are invaluable skills for students preparing to enter the ad industry. The SMU Ad Team exists to nurture these skills and give students a chance to present their work to a real client and a panel of industry experts. And we’ve been pretty successful. Last year, SMU won 1st place at the NSAC District 10 Competition and was a national finalist with an insightful advertising campaign for Wienerschnitzel.

The SMU 2020 Ad Team: Professor Amber Benson, Kathryn Chavez, Sarah Jane Eckelkamp, Jackson Ferris, Avery Fuller-Monk, Sebastian Gutierrez, Caillie Horner, Sarah Katsikas, Meryn Kennedy, Lauren Kobayashi, Erin McCraw, Abhinav Nadella, Ankita Padarthy, Riley Preston, Susan Slaton, Lizzie Venditti, and Whitney Wilkerson.


How do I join?

Temerlin’s highest-performing students need to apply to compete on the NSAC stage. Applications open each fall, keep an eye on your email. Pony Up Team Adobe!

ALUMNI UPDATE: Producing the iPhone 11 Keynote Film

Interview by Professor Mark Allen

Ask any advertising student (or professional) to name who’s on their career bucket list and most likely you’ll find Apple near the top. In the same league as brands like Nike, Volkswagen and Coke, the creative heavyweight from Cupertino consistently pumps out ads that are just as revolutionary as their products.

This September, Apple released its much-anticipated iPhone 11 Pro with a seriously beefed-up camera. To show off the device’s impressive new video capabilities, Apple asked TAI alumnus, Diego Contreras (’08), to create a short film for the official worldwide launch at the most recent Apple Keynote. With an iPhone 11 Pro and an extraordinary amount of talent, this is what he produced:

The new iPhone camera is incredible, no doubt. But one thing is even clearer to me: I still don’t expect my videos to look anywhere near this good—that is, unless Diego Contreras happens to be holding my iPhone.

I’ve kept up with Diego and his career ever since he was an art direction student of mine back in 2006–08. In addition to being a unique creative talent, he’s one of the kindest people you’ll ever meet. Whether it’s dinner when we find ourselves in the same city or giving advice to my advertising students via Skype, he always makes time in his busy schedule to catch up and give back.

One of my fondest memories of Diego was how he always found a way to have fun while working so hard. When he returned to our program as a senior, I asked him to lead our Fall Startup Meeting—our annual gathering of creative students after returning from summer break. Diego kicked off the event with a crazy video he shot and edited of him and a few other creative students wreaking havoc at a local grocery store on motorized carts. He even hosted a goofy awards show, featuring trophies that he made himself. He gave me the Vidal Sassoon Best Hair Award, made from an empty bottle of shampoo that he spray-painted gold. It was very much like Diego’s own version of The Dundie Awards. The point here is that Diego spent a ton of time creating a bunch of completely unnecessary content and made-up awards in order to foster a culture of fun and creativity around hard work. More than 10 years later, I still see the effects of Diego’s contribution to the culture of fun, hard work and camaraderie in our program.

Since graduating from SMU, Diego has worked for a truly impressive list of agencies. He started out as art director at Crispin, Porter + Bogusky in Boulder, then went to Anomaly in New York. He became an associate creative director at BBDO and then launched out on his own as a film and commercial director, currently working with Reset Content in LA. In light of his momentous project for Apple, I caught up with Diego and hit him with a barrage of questions:
Continue reading “ALUMNI UPDATE: Producing the iPhone 11 Keynote Film”

INDUSTRY CONNECTIONS: An Inside Opportunity Most Industry Insiders Would Love.

SMU Advertising students spent their winter vacation exploring the Dallas Advertising Industry.

A special topics course led by Professor Peter Noble delved into current media, advertising agency structure, and agency work culture for six hours per day for eight days as part of SMU’s January Term. A group of select undergraduate and graduate students visited Dallas ad agencies including TracyLocke and The Richards Group to get a backstage tour of the agencies, network and get the insiders’ perspectives from presentations given by agency professionals themselves.

Many students participate in for-credit internships through the Temerlin Advertising Institute Internship Program. “Students are able to find their own internships, but many agencies actively seek out our students as they are ready to contribute from day one,” relayed Professor Noble.

Graduate student Munir Abdurahman describes the power of small courses at Temerlin: “The experience I had at Commerce House is something I’ll always remember about this course. After we toured the agency I spent some time talking to the person that gave us the tour. I asked her some questions about what her experience was like during her graduate career at SMU. Lauren mentioned that it was a wonderful experience and that she wouldn’t be where she is today without being in the program. She also mentioned that I should always network and be involved in the program as opportunities can come out of nowhere!”

SMU Advertising students have recently interned at:

Employers interested in hiring our students, please see the following information about the internship program.