the frequency a kenny chung blog

March 18th, 2009
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Day 1

Tons of initials for Day 2. I forgot to mention that Day 1 ended with a social event with tons of BU alumni meeting with us (as well as with the BU COM PR trip people). I met a lot of interesting people who were all very helpful and imparted much wisdom about how the real world is.

Anyway, onto a review of Day 2!

CDM- Cline Davis & Mann

Clients You’d Know Viagra (D2P only)

First impressions: CDM provided by far the most professional setting for our visit, which makes sense since it’s primarily a pharmaceutical advertising firm. We entered a conference room with individual place settings consisting of a bottle of Poland Spring water, a CDM keychain and a mini-book portfolio of the company’s work. We watched a reel, then took a tour, and when we got back to the conference room there was a complete panel of speakers representing all aspects of the agency. We had an extensive Q&A with them, from which I learned a ton.

What I took away:
·The holding company of CDM is SSCG, which stands for Substance, Style, Conviction, Grace.
·SSCGU is a semi-in-house ‘school’ that provides courses for all employees, ranging from biology courses (to better familiarize oneself with terminology) to creative courses (if one were considering switching career paths). They even entertain suggestions for new classes.
·Each position has Career Paths, which are like levels you complete, that provide a guideline for promotions, etc. but are by no means set in stone.

Lasting impression: Visiting CDM was a different experience. I loved the idea of their SSCGU program and would definitely enroll in classes if I were to work at CDM (or their sister agencies Lab9 and AgencyRx). My impression was that CDM really cares about their employees and wants them to achieve their full potential while still working in the agency.

Also, they gave us complimentary children’s books created through employee collaboration (written, illustrated and generally put together). It was titled “The Little Girl Who Found Her Heart” and proceeds for the book went to charity. That made me sit up and say “Wow! I’ve never seen that before.” Either Advertising is transcending mediums like never before, or Advertisers can also be people who care. What a concept!

There was also a Tibet march/protest down the block when we left (literally a sea of people as far as the eye could see). It was unreal how many people were involved. Pictures do not do it justice, but here’s an attempt anyway:

BBDO

Clients You’d Know: FedEx, ATT, HBO, M&Ms, Monster.com, Pepsi/MTN Dew

First impressions: Along with CDM, BBDO was another agency that really felt like it was housed in an office building. Also, it must be stressed that BBDO is BIG! They’re now worldwide and also have their own digital agency (Atmosphere Proximity). One of the professors who was leading the tour said that you can really determine what companies will treat you right by looking at where they have meetings. BBDO accommodated us in a conference room full of sofas and armchairs. It was by far the most comfortable meeting, and we were also offered Aquafina water, M&Ms and Gillette shaving gel.

Takeaways:
·Digital, Digital, DIGITAL! If you want to stay on top of things, you must go interactive. There is NO excuse not to have an online presence.
·We had a very eccentric speaker (he had complete control of the room) who spoke to us about his unique job at BBDO (NY). He was the Creative Engineer and his duties were to figure out if an idea would be possible to execute and determine how to do it. I had never heard of such a position before, and was quite intrigued by it. Hopefully I’ll be in contact with him soon (side note: I’ve been purposely leaving out names for privacy sake; I hope it hasn’t been misconstrued as a sign of disrespect!).
·BBDO has an in-house bar! It’s called
Central Filing and we were all guests there. The best part was when our guide told us that we didn’t have to pay for drinks!

Lasting impression: BBDO was a little more buttoned-up than the places we visited on Day 1, but at the end of the workday, they sure knew how to party. We even met the supreme head honcho of the company (“Ozzy”) and had a drink with him between rounds of Guitar Hero. It was such a fine duality between business and pleasure. Also, as their in-house lawyer mentioned, one of the downsides to having such a large company is that not everyone gets to know each other. But overall, I respected BBDO for its decorum and like it for its prestige.

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