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Ad Council

A

Interviewee

12 Art Director

Team Disadvantages

0, 2

Project Outcome

Successful

Industry

Pro-bono/non-profit/government

Location

New York

Team Risk Tolerance

High

Team Dynamics

TeamDynamics_FunandProductive

Company

Ad Council


Boost up. Margie might talk about it also. We started working on that, we were briefed in June and it just finished in December. Because it was pro bono, it was really rewarding. It wasn't like we're trying to sell something to somebody, we're actually trying to keep kids in school and help kids graduate. The whole concept of Boost Up is, the reason why a lot of these kids don't graduate is because they don't have enough support from their friends or their family or from teachers. If they just had someone giving a little encouragement, a little boost just saying, you can do it, you should graduate, that's all it takes is just a little bit of encouragement, a little bit of a boost to help these kids graduate. It just felt really rewarding and good to be working on something like that and the way that we collaborated, Margie and I were the lead team on it and then there was another team that would help us out whenever we needed help. We collaborated with them a lot in the beginning phases of the project. [1049],[1050]
A lot of the time it was the four of us sitting in a room talking about it and thinking about what we could do and just spending time on it. I think it helps that we all really cared about it. We were more personally invested in it than if we were making an ad for toilet paper or chips or something. We really wanted to do something and help. [1082],[1081],[1052],[1051]
Yes, nationally it's running right now actually. The website was the biggest part of it. Since we were talking to teenagers mostly, we wanted to make sure that we were online and that we were in places that they were already communicating with each other. Our website connects to MySpace and Facebook and YouTube and those sites that they're already on. I was a really big process. We worked with another company in San Francisco and they were building the website and we were creative directing them to get it all done. That was months of phone calls and work and all that stuff. [1083],[1053]
My partner and I were working on every single aspect of it so it was pretty huge. [1054]
What happened to the project, it ended up being a lucky thing, we had a creative director on the project and as we were shooting the TV spots, he announced that he was leaving the company and going to another job. He left and another guy took over and then a week or two later that guy was like, I'm leaving and he went to another job. A lot of it was just me and Margie and this other team. We need to make these decisions and let's make them and getting things done. We had a great producer and he was organizing everything and making sure everything was happening on time and on task. There was a core group of us so we are making the decisions and things had to go through this or that person at some level and we had to get approval from Ad Council for everything. [1057],[1056],[1055]
As far as internally, it was a really small group of us, which was good. We found that because we cared about this project soo much we didn't want too many hands to touch it. It was like well if we don't tell too many people that we are working on this, we just lay low and keep working on it then we will protect the integrity of the idea. Sometimes it makes more sense to have more hands in the pie but for this project we need to make sure we keep this amongst these people. So it worked out. [1058],[1060],[1059]
We found that because we cared about this project soo much we didn't want too many hands to touch it. It was like well if we don't tell too many people that we are working on this, we just lay low and keep working on it then we will protect the integrity of the idea. [1084],[1085]
They had to take a big risk, actually. The Ad Council and the Army as well because last year's campaign they spent a lot of money on TV spots and not very much money on the web so this year we wanted them to spend 80% of the budget on the web and 20% on the TV stuff. Which is a risk for any client to take. The Ad Council, when we were presenting to them, they were like this is groundbreaking for us, we've never done anything like this before. It was huge website so it was a big step for them. I think it was the biggest website project that they've ever been involved in. It was a big deal for for them to take a risk on them. [1061]
In the beginning the brief was really simple. It was, here's last year's campaign, what can we do with it this year. What they have done in the past was they picked ten kids, ten seniors from around the country and had them document their senior year on video and we sent them a video camera and they'd send us back the videos and then they'd post them online. That was the place that last years campaign ended up. The website was cool. You could watch these kids videos but you couldn't do anything else to interact with them or encourage them or give them a boost. We were like okay this is cool you have these videos but we want to be able to create a website that wasn't as static. Wasn't just sitting there watching videos. Where you could actually interact with the kids and go on their MySpace page or interact with them on Facebook or send them a text message. [1062]
We were like okay this is cool you have these videos but we want to be able to create a website that wasn't as static. Wasn't just sitting there watching videos. Where you could actually interact with the kids and go on their MySpace page or interact with them on Facebook or send them a text message. [1087],[1086],[1088]
Recently, we worked on this project, and Megan will probably say the same thing, the BoostUp.com project, which is, it's a product to help teenagers graduate from high school. Because there's 40% of them that aren't. They had that project going for a while under one of the creative directors here, but there was ... when we sat down, that we got put on it, and we sat down with it and realized that they needed to incorporate some dialogue and just open the whole thing up. [1576]
The budget was small. Since it was pro bono and there wasn't too much of a budget, the web company worked ... we did pay them but they worked at a reduced rate, I think. It was directed and edited by the same people who did it last year. I think we may have paid them something but I'm sure it was probably reduced or something. As far as media, there was absolutely no media budget whatsoever. All the media for the TV spots and for the print was all donated [1063],[1064]
There's this really cool opportunity to do this whole web element to it, and really tie everything together really well. It ended up being kind of, because that creative director left, very early on, and it was his baby. So, it was like okay, you know? What are we going to do? [1577]
We had to talk to one of the other digital creative directors and he got involved, and then he left. It was a good and bad thing. Because on one hand, it's like we didn't have any real leadership. Nobody was doing it. Everyone kept leaving. We were the only ones that ... It was us and another team. We were the lead team and the other team wasn't really supposed to be on it, but they wanted to be. So, they were kind of helping, they were on it kind of incognito. [1579],[1578],[1580]
We started in June and the website was supposed to launch in September, October to coincide with the beginning of the school year for the kids, but we had to push the website back because we wanted to make sure that, since it was such a huge part, an incredible piece of the project, we wanted to make sure it was right and done well and done the way we wanted it to be done. The website didn't really ... it was technically launched in October but it's grown a lot in the last few months and come into its own in the last couple of months. It really was a six month project. [1089],[1065]
But it was a really, really good experience because we didn't have anyone above us telling us, it has to be done this way. We were able to do it exactly the way we wanted to. Instead of such a dictatorship, it was ... when we were working at the web company, it was always a collaborative effort more so than a client telling the vendor what to do. And we didn't want that, because they're really good guys. [1602],[1584],[1585],[1582],[1586],[1581],[1603],[1583]
I think all the deadlines were pushed a little bit but the web deadline, we extended a lot more than we planned. [1090]
No, it was actually good that we could ... with other clients when they have media bought already, you have to deal with that time frame. It's like it's due now, it's due now. We could bend to that and be flexible and make sure that we had enough time to get the media right instead of just trying to get it out of the door. In this case it really helped us to be able to bend it a little bit. The radio had to be out by a certain time and we got that done on time and the TV as well. I think all the deadlines were pushed a little bit but the web deadline, we extended a lot more than we planned. [1066]
The whole thing was a very, very creative, collaborative effort in the end. Which I don't know if it would have turned out that way, had there been a single person at the top, making all the decisions. Everyone had something to offer, and everyone ... me and Megan were kind of the ones that were always on it, [inaudible 00:12:50] putting out really good proofs there as well. He's awesome. [1608],[1605],[1587],[1590],[1589],[1606],[1591],[1607],[1588],[1604]
It was good. During the entire project we were amazed at how smoothly it was going and how much we liked working on it and how much we liked working with the other team. We all cared about it and we all had a heart for it. We were hoping that it would turn out to be something really cool that we had envisioned that it had. We are all pretty happy about it now. [1067],[1091]
t was good. During the entire project we were amazed at how smoothly it was going and how much we liked working on it and how much we liked working with the other team. We all cared about it and we all had a heart for it. We were hoping that it would turn out to be something really cool that we had envisioned that it had. We are all pretty happy about it now. [1092],[1093],[1094]
And he kept everything together and made sure everyone was in the loop on everything and everyone knew what was going on. But there was only five or six people working on it. It was two teams of creatives, one producer, one account person. And that's it. That was it. [1609],[1593],[1592]
lot of it had to do with, lets talk to kids where they already are in ways that they already use. So let's use MySpace, let's use Facebook, lets use texting, lets go on YouTube and so the Boost website sort of works as a hub for all of those other sites. We did pick ten kids again this year and they are posting their videos online but in addition to watching their stories, you can go on their individual pages and leave comments for them or send them an email and it all gets filtered back into the site. [1095]
A lot of it had to do with, lets talk to kids where they already are in ways that they already use. So let's use MySpace, let's use Facebook, lets use texting, lets go on YouTube and so the Boost website sort of works as a hub for all of those other sites. We did pick ten kids again this year and they are posting their videos online but in addition to watching their stories, you can go on their individual pages and leave comments for them or send them an email and it all gets filtered back into the site. So you can see how many emails they've gotten, how many MySpace messages they've gotten, if there's been any video comments on YouTube, how many text messages people have sent them and it's all recorded, visually on the site so you can see who's made a comment where and it's a timeline as well. So you can see how much support this kid has gotten from day one up till now and up to graduation. [1069],[1068]
For something that size, and for this agency, for something that size, for that much work, I mean, it was months of work. And the fact that we were having to do it on the down-low, because they were trying to kill it in-house, because they didn't know what was going on. We had to run in at the last ... We found out at one point that they were going to kill the whole project. [1611],[1612],[1594],[1596],[1595],[1610]
We had to run in to the CEOs office and show him all this work and be like, "Please don't kill this project." Luckily, we were at a stage where he was able to look at it and be like, "Oh, okay. I won't kill it. I'll figure it out." [1614],[1597],[1613]
It's been really rewarding because lately, especially it's been really taking off. And some of the messages that people are leaving, because the whole thing was meant to be, to open the dialogue between the students and the rest of the country, that the rest of the country could chime in and support them. Because a lot of times their support systems are just not there. They don't have parents- [1598]
Yeah, they were building it. Our concept for the website and how it was going to work and all of that stuff was from us. [1070]
They were cool. We were on the shoot with one main client and she was really nice and helpful. After we would leave meetings at their offices we would come out of it and say, wow, I wish all of our clients were that great and all of our clients were that cool and willing to take risks and that easy. Usually if they brought up any points of contention when we were presenting to them, they were completely valid points and we would agree with them. [1075],[1072],[1074],[1071],[1073]
We were on the shoot with one main client and she was really nice and helpful. After we would leave meetings at their offices we would come out of it and say, wow, I wish all of our clients were that great and all of our clients were that cool and willing to take risks and that easy. Usually if they brought up any points of contention when we were presenting to them, they were completely valid points and we would agree with them. [1096],[1097]
And if you read some of the messages on the sites, they're really, really cool. All these people just ... some of them are really funny, and there's a touch of sadness to some of them. People having regrets about not graduating. [1615]
So, it allowed all these other people to have a voice and lift them up. And if you read some of the messages on the sites, they're really, really cool. All these people just ... some of them are really funny, and there's a touch of sadness to some of them. People having regrets about not graduating. [1599]
Yeah, they were very helpful and a lot of their feedback was take it or leave it but here's how we feel about this. We could argue against it or for it and it was very much working together in compromise with them, they were great. [1078],[1079],[1077],[1076]
But overall, it ended up having this really awesome feeling of hope, throughout the whole thing. And I think that was really cool. Some of the kids have even wrote back, being like, "Thank you so much."- [1600]
It's been really rewarding. But, it's a [inaudible 00:14:51] project. And actually the client on that is the Ad Council. They've been amazing the whole way through. [1601]
As far as my relationship with the account people, our account guy was also great and really on top of stuff. He was the main contact for the client. We really just had contact with the client when we went to their office to present to them or speak to them. He had daily contact with them at certain points and he was great and did a good job and we like him. [1098],[1080],[1099]
Reference Tags
[1049] Win-win conflict about ideas,[1050] Identifiable victim effect,[1082] Believes one has a hopeful path,[1081] Collaborative-Creative Disposition,[1052] Identifiable victim effect,[1051] Win-win conflict about ideas,[1083] Collaborative-Creative Disposition,[1053] Ikea effect,[1054] Ikea effect,[1057] Decisive leadership,[1056] Ikea effect,[1055] Organizing effectively,[1058] Decisive leadership,[1060] Ikea effect,[1059] Organizing effectively,[1084] Better than average,[1085] Forceful conflict about ideas,[1061] Risk compensation,[1062] Ikea effect,[1087] Believes one has high agency,[1086] Creative Confidence,[1088] Win-win conflict about ideas,[1576] Ikea effect,[1063] Believes one has a hopeful path,[1064] Lack of resources,[1577] Resilience,[1579] Indecisive leadership,[1578] Organizing effectively,[1580] Resilience,[1089] Planning fallacy,[1065] Planning fallacy,[1602] Collaborative-Creative Disposition,[1584] Communicating ideas across domains,[1585] Decisive leadership,[1582] Ikea effect,[1586] Organizing effectively,[1581] Promote autonomy & sense of ownership,[1603] Win-win conflict about ideas,[1583] Win-win conflict about ideas,[1090] Planning fallacy,[1066] Planning fallacy,[1608] Believes one has high agency,[1605] Collaborative-Creative Disposition,[1587] Communicating ideas across domains,[1590] Decisive leadership,[1589] Ikea effect,[1606] Organizing effectively,[1591] Organizing effectively,[1607] Promote autonomy & sense of ownership,[1588] Promote autonomy & sense of ownership,[1604] Trust,[1067] Organizing effectively,[1091] Trust,[1092] Creative Confidence,[1093] Optimism,[1094] Win-win conflict about relationships,[1609] Communicating ideas across domains,[1593] Decisive leadership,[1592] Organizing effectively,[1095] Collaborative-Creative Disposition,[1069] Empathetic disposition,[1068] Identifiable victim effect,[1611] Communication issues,[1612] Internal changes/challenges,[1594] Lack of organizational encouragement,[1596] Lack of resources,[1595] Resilience,[1610] Trust,[1614] Believes one has a hopeful path,[1597] Believes one has a hopeful path,[1613] Believes one has high agency,[1598] Identifiable victim effect,[1070] Ikea effect,[1075] Communicating ideas across domains,[1072] Decisive leadership,[1074] Risk compensation,[1071] Trust,[1073] Win-win conflict about ideas,[1096] Collaborative-Creative Disposition,[1097] Win-win conflict about relationships,[1615] Empathetic disposition,[1599] Identifiable victim effect,[1078] Communicating ideas across domains,[1079] Promote autonomy & sense of ownership,[1077] Trust,[1076] Win-win conflict about ideas,[1600] Identifiable victim effect,[1601] Great example - Productive innovation norms,[1098] Communicating ideas across domains,[1080] Organizational encouragement,[1099] Organizing effectively

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