Tag Archives: branding

Industry vet Alex Moulton joins NYC’s Trollbäck+Company

New York’s Trollbäck+Company has hired Alex Moulton as chief creative officer where he has been tasked with helping businesses and organizations develop sustainable brands through design-driven strategy and mixed media.

Moulton, who joins the agency from Vice Media, was recently at the helm of NBC Universo’s highly regarded brand refresh, as well as show packaging for ESPN’s The Undefeated In-Depth: Serena With Common.

“Alex brings an invaluable perspective to Trollbäck+Company as both an artist and entrepreneur,” says founder Jakob Trollbäck. “In his short time here, he has already reinvigorated the collective creative energy of our company. This clearly stems from his constant quest to dig deeper as a creative problem solver, which falls perfectly into our philosophy of ‘Discard everything that means nothing.’”

Says Moulton, “My vision for Trollbäck+Company is very clear: design culturally relevant, sustainable brands — from initial strategy and positioning to content and experiential activations —  with a nimble and holistic approach that makes us the ultimate partner for CMOs that care about designing an enduring brand and bringing it to market with integrity.”

Prior to Trollbäck+Company, as senior director, creative and content at Vice, Moulton helped launch digital content channel Live Nation TV (LNTV) — a joint venture for which he led brand creative, content development, production and partnership initiatives.

As executive creative director at advertising agency Eyeball, Moulton led product launches, rebrands and campaigns for major brands, including Amazon, New York Public Radio, Wildlife Conservation Society’s New York Aquarium, A&E, CMT, Disney, E!, Nickelodeon, Oxygen, Ovation and VH1.

An early adopter of audio branding, Moulton founded his own branding agency and record label, Expansion Team, in 2002. As chief creative officer of the company, he created the sonic identities of Aetna, Amazon Studios/Originals, Boeing, JetBlue and Rovi, as well as more than 15 TV networks, including CNN International, Discovery, PBS, Universal and Comedy Central.

A DJ, composer and speaker about topics that combine music and design, Moulton has been featured in Billboard, V Man, Electronic Musician and XLR8R and has performed at The Guggenheim.

Designer Mitch Monson joins mOcean as creative director

Mitch Monson has joined LA-based mOcean as creative director/client partner. An Emmy-winning designer, Monson has collaborated with the likes of ABC, Al Jazeera, Canal+, Comedy Central, Fox, HBO, Showtime, Canon, IBM and Nike. He was also instrumental in creating the iconic Love Symbol for The Artist Formerly Known as Prince.

Prior to joining mOcean, Monson was creative director at Trollbäck + Company in New York, where he led the rebrand of the BBC master brand; brand identities for the 2016 Rio Summer Olympics and the upcoming 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics for NBC Sports; and the original Mr. Robot show packaging for USA Network.

“I’m excited about my new role at mOcean and the opportunity to combine more filmmaking and in-camera work with motion design and animation,” says Monson. “It’s been amazing to jump right in with so many clients that represent the top entertainment brands in film and television. Plus, it is great to have the strength of mOcean’s directing, editorial, design and key art capabilities all in one team. There is just so much creative and executional depth to their narrative process and it’s inspiring to be a part of it!”

 

Behind the Title: Mr. Wonderful CD Gary Keenan

NAME: Gary Keenan

COMPANY: New York City’s Mr. Wonderful (@mrwdesign)

CAN YOU DESCRIBE YOUR COMPANY?
Mr. Wonderful is a NYC based creative-production studio specializing in concept-driven motion design, branding and effects for television, film, interactive and environmental media.

WHAT’S YOUR JOB TITLE?
Creative Director

WHAT DOES THAT ENTAIL?

It involves having a clear creative vision and being able to provide constructive, specific and intelligible feedback to my team so they can create their best work. Building strong client relationships, developing briefs and making presentations are also essential. The creative director is a manager, salesman, therapist and sometimes a creative.

WHAT WOULD SURPRISE PEOPLE THE MOST ABOUT WHAT FALLS UNDER THAT TITLE?
Having the right mix of talent and interpersonal skills is a very difficult task, which is why good creative directors are hard to find – there are so few people who can both be creative and manage creative.

WHAT TOOLS DO YOU USE?
Persuasion, it’s the most useful tool of all. Failing that, some Irish charm.

WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE PART OF THE JOB?
The variety of projects that come across my desk is what keeps the job interesting.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE TIME OF THE DAY?
Miller Time. Sorry, working in advertising is bound to have its effects.

IF YOU DIDN’T HAVE THIS JOB, WHAT WOULD YOU BE DOING INSTEAD?
Oshiya. In Japan, oshiya are professionals that are hired to push people onto trains. I live in Manhattan and do it here everyday for free.

HOW EARLY ON DID YOU KNOW THIS WOULD BE YOUR PATH?
When I came to the realization that I was absolutely useless at everything else.

CAN YOU NAME SOME RECENT PROJECTS YOU HAVE WORKED ON?
The season launch promo and digital package for Keeping up With the Kardashians for E! and the identity for the new late night show Full Frontal With Samantha Bee.

WHAT IS THE PROJECT THAT YOU ARE MOST PROUD OF?
Easy, Robert (13), Zach (10) and Marcus (4). It’s a work in progress but ultimately the most satisfying one.

NAME THREE PIECES OF TECHNOLOGY YOU CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT.
Electricity, the Internet and a pair of glasses.

DO YOU LISTEN TO MUSIC WHILE YOU WORK?
Yes. I like listening to different genres of music, and the genre I’m currently listening to is Stomp and Whittle. It’s like stomp and flutter, but with a more traditionalist bent. Those stomp and flutter guys just took it too far. My guess is you are now doing a Google search for Stomp and Whittle. Don’t. It’s absolute rubbish.

WHAT DO YOU DO TO DE-STRESS FROM IT ALL?
Turn off my phone.

Quick Chat: Ron Pomerantz brings his experience at Disney to Pongo

Not long ago 25-year-old creative agency Pongo hired Disney veteran Ron Pomerantz. In his new role, Pomerantz is heading up Pongo’s new creative content division, where he is responsible for developing strategic content for entertainment and retail brands. The new unit will develop and produce interstitial content, PSAs, commercials and B-to-B integration.

We reached out to LA-based Pomerantz to pick his brain about the move from Disney to Pongo (@GoPongoGo) and what he sees as the future for this veteran agency, whose credits include work for CBS’ CSI: Cyber, ABC’s Shark Tank and Disney Channel’s Teen Beach 2.

How long had you been at Disney, and why was now the time to make a change?
I started at Disney as a freelancer in 2000 and was hired in 2001 to help with the logo redesign and re-launch of SoapNet. In 2006, I was asked to creative direct Playhouse Disney (now Disney Junior) and Disney Channel.

I really had a great 13-year run at Disney in five different positions. I had the privilege to rebrand several of the networks multiple times, launch Disney Junior and manage and promote some really spectacularly relevant IP. But, of late, I have been eager to stretch my wings beyond the kid space. It was time for a change and time for me to return to my creative roots — making entertaining content and great brand marketing.

Pomerantz will be working directly with (L-R) Cary Sachs and Tom McGough.

Pomerantz will be working directly with (L-R) chief marketing officer Cary Sachs and  CEO/president Tom McGough.

Why Pongo? What excites you about this company and this segment of the industry?
I have worked with Pongo for almost 20 years. I have a great relationship with them and they are perfectly in line with what I want to do and explore next. Both Pongo and I want to make more pro-social, storytelling pieces in addition to great promotion and marketing… the time was right for both parties.

What changes have you seen in this industry over your career?
Well, the industry has changed quite a bit as we all have seen. Viewing habits have changed drastically as social media has risen. I think we are all aware of what is happening, but one of the strongest effects I have seen is the lack of channel branding in breaks.

Networks are increasingly promoting other entities rather than their own IP in their breaks. There is an increased franticness in the pace of promotion, and the need for ratings is driving many decisions, so brand building has taken a back seat. All this is not necessarily bad as content has become multi-platform and the content needs to be branded as much, if not more so, than the brand that made it.

How will you use your skills, honed and perfected, at Disney to help Pongo?
Disney gave me global experience with beloved brands that had to be interpreted locally. Finding emotional connections to brands and their content is at the core of what I did at Disney and that is exactly what Pongo does as well.

What do you see for Pongo’s new creative content division?
Pongo has hired me to oversee the development of strategic branded content for entertainment and retails brands. Together we are going to develop and produce interstitial content, PSAs, commercials and philanthropic presentations, but we will also delve into branding and global brand identity strategy as well. Our goal is to help clients uncover their brand essence and translate that into multi-platform content and different brand expression.

How much will you be involved in the other parts of Pongo’s business?
As much as they will let me!

Hush adds design director Claudia Chagüi

New York-based design studio Hush has added design director Claudia Chagüi to its team. She brings with her a varied background in commercials, interactive installations, retail and events.

A native Colombian, Chagüi’s career has taken her from Central and South America to Kansas City, where she served as the creative director at Hint, the experiential/design division of T2. There she wrote, designed, pitched and led projects for brands such as TEDx, Sprint, McDonalds, Dell and Crayola, among others. She later helped expand Hush, starting with offices in Chicago and eventually New York.

Her work has won many awards, including Gold and Silver national ADDY awards.

“Claudia’s energy and enthusiasm for artistry and design is palpable. She’s a natural talent who has the foundation of traditional artistic pursuits, but has expanded her own practice to communicate how the craft of design can drive brands forward,” says David Schwarz, Hush creative partner. “Within a few minutes of meeting her, we knew we were very much aligned.”

 

Tongal: crowdsourcing for creatives and brands

Crowdsourcing is increasingly becoming a strategy that major film studios, artists and companies use to create digital content, broadcast campaigns, film projects and more. Tongal is a crowdsourcer of digital content that offers creatives an opportunity to work on high-profile brand campaigns while earning money in the process. Tongal works with sponsors to define a creative challenge and establish a prize pool.

According to Tongal, its community and platform can deliver anything: TV commercials, social videos, music videos, branded entertainment — even product innovations.

Tongal has worked with Oscar-winning Spitfire Pictures, Sundance, Procter & Gamble, Johnson & Johnson and others, awarding more than 50,000 members of the Tongal community (known as Tongalers). To become a community member, you can sign up on Tongal’s site for free. The Tongal community is made up of more than 50,000 people around the world: you have teenagers, mothers, grandparents, along with aspiring filmmakers, who have made in excess of $400,000 during the past year, they report.

Tongal founder James DeJulio started his career as VP of production at Paramount’s Robert Evans Company; he then co-founded his own production company called Half Shell Entertainment. DeJulio and his partners launched Tongal to give creatives more opportunities in the entertainment and marketing/advertising industry.

How it Works
Tongal uses a distributed workforce model, breaking up the creative process into a series of competitions from idea through video execution, enabling talent in 107 countries to contribute in the areas where they are strongest and build on each other’s best work.

Initially, companies approach Tongal about a creative campaign and, once defined, it is given to the Tongal community. In the first phase (idea), anyone can submit a 140-character concept and the best ones are chosen. Then filmmakers select one of the winning ideas and pitch on how they will execute it. Winning pitches are given budget to shoot and edit, then once the final product is finished, the video is sent to the sponsoring brand or artist (Heineken, McDonald’s, KISS) for evaluation. Winning videos are ranked and rewarded accordingly. Finally, companies distribute the winning videos based on their initial objectives: through TV, Internet, mobile, etc., anywhere their audiences reside.

Sometimes, the creative content that Tongal generates takes on a life of its own. For example, the winning video for a Speed Stick Video Project last year was initially intended for Speed Stick’s website, YouTube page and social media. However, the video tested so well that the brand decided to make it a Super Bowl ad.

Projects
Tongal recently partnered with Tuff Gong International and Ben & Jerry’s to create the Bob Marley One Love Music Video Project in celebration of his hits album Legend turning 30. The goal of this project is to create a three- to four-minute music video for Marley’s hit, “One Love” — evaluators will be looking for ideas and videos that convey social connectedness, “we’re all in this together” and making the world a better place. The winning video will be featured on the official Bob Marley website, Bob Marley YouTube and Ben & Jerry’s site. In addition, the winning filmmaker will win $9,000.

According to Tongal, they have provided thousands of independent creatives with the ability to showcase their talents to the world, and make a living from the work. For example, Team Spaceman is a duo from LA who love making films and have earned more than $200,000 working on projects through Tongal. In Texas, a 17-year-old Tongaler earned more than $35,000 by making stop-motion Lego videos from his parents’ garage. You can check out other success stories here.

Tongal is currently challenging its community to shoot video content in 4K. It’s for the “Farm to Table” project via Smuckers. Tongal calls it “the largest single-person payout in Tongal history, offering an $80,000 total.” Check out details on their website: http://tongal.com/project/farmtotable.