Not sold yet? Here is a short video from Jen on what to expect from the webinar.
If you have a question for Jen about using social media to build your personal brand, leave us a comment below or tweet @MelamedRiley using the official #MRGrad hashtag.
The next Melamed Riley Grad School webinar is slated for September 19. Account supervisor John Butler will talk about why you “Better Become a People Person.” Stay tuned to the Melamed Riley Grad School Website for the official registration page coming soon!
I’ve been reading a lot about introverts lately. And because I am one, I’ve been doing it in the quiet of my own home with my dog by my side. I find myself muttering things like, “Well, no wonder …” and “Now you tell me …” as I come to understand the relationship between being an introvert and surviving — even thriving — in an advertising career.
Here’s what I’ve learned: That introversion isn’t about being shy. It’s about being fueled by energy that comes from within, as opposed to the stimulation around you. My husband is a total extrovert. If we get separated at a large business or social function, I look for him among the throngs in the middle of the room. He’ll likely find me making a new best friend while waiting in line for the ladies room.
So, in my exploration, I’ve come across all kinds of interesting tidbits about introverts in general, and advertising introverts in particular. Part of my job as an ad agency principal is to to ensure that we create a balanced, yin-and-yang environment that fosters creativity, productivity, and harmony. As luck would have it, my partner, Rick Riley, is an extrovert. He thrives on conversation, brainstorming sessions, and making wildly creative presentations. Our staff of 20 includes both introverts and extroverts, although it’s not always obvious which one’s which because they all engage in many of the same behaviors. What I’ve found is that both are critical to making our business percolate, as long as we grant each individual the freedom to be themselves.
So, if you happen to be an introverted person aspiring to work in an ad agency — or you’ve already landed in one — be sure to ask for what you need to perform at your highest level.
Tips to help introverts thrive in an advertising career.
• If you’re not the type to spew a fountain of ideas during a meeting, request a little alone time to engage in your own creative process, then submit your ideas in a one-on-one situation, or in a written document.
• Not everyone’s fast on their feet. If you prefer to spend a few minutes thinking about a question or issue before answering, say so. A thoughtful response will be valued more than a speedy one.
• When making a presentation, define a role for yourself that plays up your strengths and minimizes your discomfort. Some of the most compelling presentations I’ve ever heard were made by individuals who spoke softly but straight from the heart.
• If after a long day of meetings you feel too depleted to be lively at a client dinner, suggest a break in between. Some in your group will welcome the opportunity to recharge their own batteries. The rest will happily wait for you in the bar.
Introversion or extroversion is an innate and essential part of one’s personal and professional brand. Introverts just have to work a little harder in a field like advertising because we tend to avoid the spotlight and eschew taking credit overtly. But our value to a collaborative, free-flowing environment is undeniable. And given that introverts represent roughly a third of the population, odds are that some of your clients fall into that category as well, and will connect with you in a very genuine way.
Furthermore, introverts are in good creative company. Einstein and Edison were introverts. Actors Clint Eastwood, Harrison Ford, Steve Martin, Julia Roberts and Meryl Streep are admittedly introverted. So are fictional characters like Jay Gatsby, who throws huge, lavish parties but remains an enigmatic outlier. And Mad Men’s Don Draper, whose complex brand of introversion is masked by a purely fabricated persona.
But the example that sums it all up for me is Batman, who immerses himself completely into his work as a superhero, then invariably retreats to the solitude of the Bat Cave.
Hey … maybe that’s it. Maybe you just need to make sure your ad agency comes equipped with a Bat Cave.
As someone who commutes to downtown Cleveland from the south, I have the luxury of looking at the traffic snafus caused by the filming of Captain America a little differently. I don’t see gridlock. I see the opportunity to meet an unmet need. And, in this case, it’s a highly emotional need — which, when it comes to successful branding and business, is the best kind of need there is. Think about it. Right now, how much would westsiders pay to dump their cars in Rocky River to bypass the temporary Shoreway closure with a quick ferry ride to Voinovich park?
Granted, as an ongoing venture, the idea has issues, such as reliance on a thoroughfare that’s frozen and impassable for several months every year. That would really cut down on my annual volume of customers. I’m going to have to charge a lot!
But that’s not my point. This is my point. When launching a new product or service, developing a brand or embarking on a rebranding effort, never lose sight of the fact that your chances for success are greatly improved if its introduction will meet some unfulfilled need. There have been endless new brands dreamt up that boasted a neat feature or two, but they didn’t really satisfy any perceived need. So they failed.
A critical part of the branding process here at Melamed Riley is identifying the key emotional need that a brand satisfies. Because when you uncover that — and it’s a really good one — you can sell just about anything. Like $20 boat rides. One way.
We had our second webinar in the Melamed Riley Grad School online lecture series last week featuring art director Joseph Hughes. That’s just his official title, however. You could easily call him designer, writer, enthusiast, citizen, student, and more. Joseph’s talk was about just that — how to go beyond your job description, impress your boss, and become an invaluable asset at work.
Here is a peek at just five of the 10 simple but critical tips Joseph shared:
You can always learn about the latest tech, it is important to focus on the piece of tech you’ll have your entire career: Your brain #MRGrad
If you have surfed any social network or used any type of electronic device connected to the internet over the last decade, you have probably witnessed at least one of the many photo crazes that have lit up the internet. Being quite entertained by the genre ourselves, we thought we’d recreate some of the most popular photo crazes to ever hit the internet for your viewing pleasure.
Today, March 26, is Global Epilepsy Awareness Day (or Purple Day), and we here at Melamed Riley are dressed appropriately to support the Cleveland Epilepsy Association. The Epilepsy Association is a not-for-profit organization that assists children, adults and families who are struggling to deal with the difficult challenges epilepsy presents. For more than 40 years, they have been offering a range of services in an 11-county area of Northeastern Ohio.
More than 3 million Americans have some form of epilepsy and, historically, epilepsy has been neglected, feared and misunderstood. A veil of secrecy surrounding the disease has resulted in myths, superstitions and a general lack of knowledge. This has hindered scientific progress toward finding answers to one of the oldest-known and most prevalent neurological diseases, leaving treatment and research efforts way behind other disorders. Epilepsy affects more people than Parkinson’s disease, cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis and muscular dystrophy combined, yet of the major chronic medical conditions, it’s among the least funded. For many with the disease, seizures cannot be controlled with medications and other treatment options. Individuals with epilepsy are at risk of premature death as well as mental illness. This is why generating awareness through events like Purple Day is so vital.
Purple Day was conceived by Cassidy Megan, a young girl from Nova Scotia, Canada in 2008 when she was only 9 years old. Purple Day is now a global event celebrated in 130 countries and on every continent in the world. The name Purple Day was chosen for the international color of epilepsy, lavender. The Lavender Flower is associated with solitude, which is representative of the feelings of isolation many people affected by epilepsy and seizure disorders often feel. The Purple Day goal is for people with epilepsy everywhere to know they are not alone and to increase public awareness of epilepsy. Visit the official Purple Day website for more information and free resources.
Below are some ways you can still get involved:
• If you are wearing purple, share your photos with the Epilepsy Association on Twitter, and be sure to include the hash tag #PurpleDay, and on Facebook.
• Share information about Purple Day by posting updates to your Facebook, Twitter and other social media accounts.
• Tweet this message or change your Facebook status to read: “On March 26, I’m wearing PURPLE to generate EPILEPSY AWARENESS. Help spread the word!”
• Join the Epilepsy Association at their first ever Purple Day Party fundraiser. It’s a wonderful opportunity to meet others from the Cleveland area who are raising awareness of epilepsy.
• Visit the Epilepsy Association website or blog for more information and ways to help raise awareness.
If you can’t do anything else for Purple Day, please share the following tweet: Today is Purple Day, let’s all work to fight the stigma and increase epilepsy awareness. [Click to Tweet]
Being comfortable is the key to making a great impression. So, when it comes to presentation tips, why has the adage of imagining your audience in their underwear survived for so long? Would that really work? Would that ease your nerves and help you make the presentation of your life?
I think not. Whether it’s an audience of fanatically fit folks or a room full of couch and cookie lovers, I’d find imagining them in their unmentionables rather distracting either way. While the scenarios are quite different aesthetically speaking, both would be just as unsettling. Certainly not the calming effect that the adage perpetuates. So my first piece of advice is to keep everyone’s clothes on.
Here are three presentation tips on how to relax.
Know your audience. Whether it’s a client or a prospective employer, do your homework. Know all you can about them and what they are looking for. Plus if you can find out something “personal” and less work related, something you may have in common, it will give you something to discuss at the outset that can help you and them feel more comfortable. It’s the pre-presentation banter—don’t underestimate its value.
Know your material. This is every bit as important as knowing your audience. Know your material inside and out. If you have five days to get ready, use four to come up with your presentation and use one to really absorb and internalize your whole show. The more comfortable you are making your presentation, the more comfortable your audience will be hearing it.
Know when to shut up. It’s way better to leave your audience wanting more than to have them fidgeting in their chairs praying for you to finish. That’s all I’m going to say on that point. (See, I’m practicing what I preach.)
So to make yourself more comfortable whenever you present, don’t strip your audience down to their imaginary Vic Secrets or Underoos. Just stick to these three simple presentation tips instead and everyone in the room will breathe a little easier.
For more helpful presentation tips on how to make lasting (positive) impressions—ranging from the ones you make to get your job to the ones that help you keep your job—register for The Nightmare About Your Dream Job, the first webinar in the Grad School online lecture series scheduled for April 17th. Just click here to register.
Every year the Cleveland ad community comes together to give out awards for advertising that represents the finest creative work to be conceived in our fair city. This year’s event was held at the Agora, one of Cleveland’s most storied live music venues. It was exciting to see these coveted awards for advertising greatness presented on the same stage that helped bands like ZZ Top and Grand Funk Railroad make it big.
Melamed Riley was proud to take home three bronze ADDY awards for advertising materials to support our MR Grad School promotional campaign! In addition to these honors, the Melamed Riley team was treated to creations by some of Cleveland’s most talented restaurateurs, including Jonathon Sawyer, Chris Hodgson and more. From the venue to the work to the food, it was a celebration of Cleveland creativity.
When we’re not working on award-winning work, Melamed Riley likes to recharge its creative batteries by taking a look at inspiring projects from the industry. So here’s an eclectic/inspiring assortment of 2012′s niftiest motion graphics. Included are music videos, broadcast design, and snazzy info graphics.
From the moment we began selling tickets to Melamed Riley Grad School, the buzz the event generated fell into two distinct camps: One, people who couldn’t wait to buy tickets. And two, people who wanted to buy a ticket but who just couldn’t make it to Cleveland, be it thanks to a scheduling conflict or — most often — thanks to distance. When you create an event aimed at arming college students and recent grads who hope to work in advertising, design, or public relations with a day’s worth of important know-how, you cast a wide net. Though we focused our outreach to area colleges and universities, we heard from curious people located all over the map.
Which is why we’re taking Melamed Riley Grad School online as a series of webinars coming this spring.
It was a tough decision, believe me, but as time wore on, the amount of super-interested people who couldn’t afford to travel long distances to Cleveland overwhelmed us. Who could blame them: Remember how little money you had as a student? Knowing this, we thought about what we could do to reach the widest audience possible. Bringing Grad School online as a series of webinars accomplishes this. While we’re still ironing out some of the technical details and final dates, we can tell you that going to Grad School will now be tuition-free, and requires no gas money! For their troubles and commitment, we’ve refunded our ticket-buyers and threw in a little extra as a thank you, too.
So, wherever you’re studying, you can soak up all of the knowledge we have to offer! We think the lectures our speakers are planning appeal to a very wide audience, extending beyond college students to include high schoolers and those already in the working world who may be considering a career change. After all, skills like knowing how to give good presentations or becoming jacks-of-all-trades help you no matter where you are in your career. To jump to the head of the class and be the first to know about the spring schedule of Melamed Riley Grad School webinars, click here, fill out the form, and we’ll be in touch. Questions? Let us know in the comments below.