Archive for Jeff Rosenblum

Leadership lessons from my loser football team

Posted by Jeff Rosenblum on May 3rd, 2013 at 8:00 am

I'm a New York Jets fan. We stink. I mean, really stink. After trading away the best cornerback in the world and drafting a rookie to replace him, it's clear we're entering into a multi-year reclamation process.
But despite my frequent remote-throwing tantrums, the advertising industry can learn a lot about leadership from my crappy football team.
In a lot of ways the Jets have good leadership. As any football fan knows, Coach Rex Ryan is extraordinarily positive and supportive of his team. His players truly enjoy playing for him and that gets results on an individual level. But positivity alone, does not win football games. And it doesn’t create great advertising.
A great leader is able to make tough decisions that lead to a championship, not just a satisfied team. That’s where Rex fails. Last season, Rex so dramatically mismanaged the quarterback position that the Jets are currently in a complete roster overhaul. The Jets quarterback, Mark Sanchez, wasn’t performing as a starter should. Every statistic pointed to the fact that he was one of the worst quarterbacks in the league, even though he was getting paid franchise-caliber money. But Rex refused to bench Mark, assuming that it was only a matter... Read more

Lessons from a Nauseating Super Bowl Ad

Posted by Jeff Rosenblum on February 11th, 2013 at 12:24 pm

Last Sunday, I saw a Super Bowl ad that made me want to puke. Not figuratively. Literally. Here’s why…
During the game, I ate a ridiculous amount of food. That doesn’t make me unique. It makes me American. Studies show that it’s the second largest day of food consumption behind Thanksgiving. In fact, over a billion chicken wings were eaten during the Super Bowl. The day after, 7-Eleven saw a 20% increase in antacid sales.
So when Sonic advertised late in the fourth quarter for its new foot-long hog dogs covered in glutinous toppings, I was nauseous, because at that point I was filled with roughly 2,000 calories of food.
In a laboratory environment I’m sure the Sonic ad did great. It’s catchy, it’s witty, there’s a lot of product and logo shots, and the food looks delicious. From a media planning perspective I’m sure the ad buy made a lot of conceptual sense. Unlike many of us who grew up in digital, I don’t denounce a Super Bowl ad buy. It’s an amazingly powerful way to create cultural currency, and I’m sure that the media buying team did a great job of negotiating the rates.
The problem wasn’t the ad itself, but rather... Read more

What You Can Learn From Your Crappy Football Team

Posted by Jeff Rosenblum on January 30th, 2012 at 5:17 pm

If you are like 94% of football fans right now, your team is crap. I'm sure you didn't invest every Sunday watching your team play for over 16 weeks just to watch somebody else's team play in the Super Bowl. But there's something to be learned from your disappointment. And it's an adage that applies both to football and to marketing: Championships are not won by the team with the most stars.
Both teams playing in the Super Bowl have the same number of stars as any other team. Perhaps even less. Where the two contenders truly stand out is that neither team has a glaring weakness. They don't have any players that can't perform at a superior level. They don't have holes in the roster.
Now, compare those two teams to the thirty teams watching from home to see what you can learn about your marketing team. The teams that didn't make it all the way have weaknesses that were exploited by the competition. My team is the Jets (keep your snide remarks to yourself). Our weak link was Eric Smith. Eric plays safety, which is a relatively obscure position to the casual fan, just like many marketing positions are obscure... Read more

How We Became iMedia's Agency of the Year

Posted by Jeff Rosenblum on January 3rd, 2012 at 10:38 am

Twelve years ago, we started Questus with a team of people who had never even been inside an advertising agency. This month, we won iMedia’s Agency of the Year. In my mind, our unconventional background is directly responsible for our current success. It takes a team of people who aren’t saddled with the old way of thinking to create a revolutionary approach to growing brands.
We counsel our clients to understand that brands now operate in an age of transparency and that marketers must proactively engage in open business practices. I believe in doing the same for our agency, so here is the inside scoop on exactly how we won iMedia’s Agency of the Year—warts and all.
Ironically, our recent success started with a major failure.  About four years ago, we were growing rapidly and hired a few senior members to help manage the team. We had a solid interviewing process, but made some terrible hires. Thankfully, we managed to insulate our clients from the subsequent issues, but internally we were miserable. We lost our culture. We lost our smiles. We lost our mojo.
It was from that low point that we began our assent toward Agency of the Year. We learned from... Read more

Five key lessons from The Naked Company

Posted by Jeff Rosenblum on September 6th, 2011 at 12:46 pm

For the entire 20th century, corporations have used advertising to create fictitious stories that we, as consumers and viewers, have believed. Marketers sold us shiny images and smiling faces from every glowing screen.
But things have changed now that the whole world is connected digitally. When brands behave badly, we find out. When products suck, we ignore them. Consumers are in control and corporations are naked.
I've spent the last year asking CEOs, scientists, authors and industry insiders about the future of branding for a groundbreaking documentary called 'The Naked Company.' I'll be previewing this film for attendees at the upcoming iMedia Brand Summit, where I'll also share some of the key takeaways I've learned from talking to brands that get it. From those interviews I've also devised five key lessons to help brands, marketers and businesses be better, do better and truly connect with customers in this new and naked age.
1.  Advertising can't fool us anymore.
Consumers have all the power these days because we've got social media, expert reviews and phone-sized supercomputers to tell us the facts in real-time. We know the truth now no matter what story marketers try to jam down our throats.
Yet, some brands still preach from the hilltop... Read more