Reviewers Rave: Douglas Davis' New Book a Must-Read

6/13/2016 Unknown 0 Comments

Over the course of a dynamic career as both a creative professional and college professor, BIC Professor Douglas Davis was inspired to write a book that teaches left-brain business skills to right-brain creative thinkers. Little did he realize that when he was finished, Creative Strategy and the Business of Design would become an "instant classic." Applauded by such accomplished authors as Luke Sullivan and Pete Barry, the book has received praise even before it was published in early June.

As Davis states, "Remaining relevant as a creative professional takes more than creativity—you need to understand the language of business. The problem is that design school doesn’t teach the strategic language that is now essential to getting your job done." Inside, you’ll read about the business objectives and marketing decisions that drive creative work with topics such as building a strategic framework to inspire visual concepts, increasing your relevance in an evolving industry, and redesigning your portfolio to showcase strategic thinking. 

Buy the book on Amazon.

More about Douglas Davis. Brooklyn-based Douglas Davis enjoys being one of a variety of voices needed in front of and behind the concept of a marketing plan or digital strategy. His approach to creativity combines right-brained creative problem solving with left-brained strategic thinking. In 2011, Douglas founded The Davis Group LLC and continues to offer strategic solutions to client branding, digital and design problems. In addition to client work, Douglas leverages his experience as a faculty member in the Communication Design department at New York City College of Technology, on the graduate level in the Branding and Integrated Communications (BIC) program at The City College of New York and digitally as an HOW Design university course contributor.

A Punch in the Face...

6/13/2016 Unknown 0 Comments


Douglas Davis Featured on HOW Podcast

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Prior to his book launch, BIC Professor Douglas Davis was featured on Episode #29 of a HOW Design Live podcast where he discussed Creative Strategy and the Business of Design. Speaking to Ilise Benun, founder of Marketing-Mentor.com and Partner for HOW Design Live’s new Creative Entrepreneur program, they focused on how design and creative professionals can win battles with marketing people by speaking their language. Throughout his academic career and now with his recently published book, Douglas has been on a mission to teach left brain business skills to right brain creative thinkers so they can have a seat at the table — without feeling like they’re crashing the party.

The BIC Portfolio Defense 2016

6/07/2016 Unknown 0 Comments


After completing coursework in mid-May, students in the Class of 2016 had one more hurdle before receiving their MPS diploma: each needed to defend a portfolio in front of a panel of professionals. On Tuesday, May 31st, students individually presented a body of work that represented their two years in the program as well as the latest thinking in the communications field. These timed portfolio defenses in the areas of public relations, management, planning, research, media planning, art direction, and copywriting were evaluated using a rubric that focused on three areas: content, storytelling, and showcase.

To prepare for the Portfolio Defense, students met throughout the year for group critiques, one-on-one advising, over-the-shoulder tutoring at the Portfolio Bootcamp, and with recruiters for the Portfolio-in-Progress (PiP) in February. It all paid off: every student passed!!


Thanks to our amazing judges who dedicated the day to evaluating and critiquing the student portfolios. They are:

Public Relations Judges

Michael Marinello
Head of Global Communications, Technology, Sustainability and Brand at Bloomberg. Michael created and leads Bloomberg’s Brand Integration efforts - working more strategically and pro-actively with the entertainment industry. He also ran Global Communications for Core and Financial Products (aka The Bloomberg terminal). He has experience working with C-suite executives, national leaders, and high profile media professionals and personalities.

Renee Wilson
President of the PR Council, former President of MSLGROUP North America, member of the MSLGROUP global board of directors and the firm’s Chief Client Officer. Renee was president of the 2014 PR jury for the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity and served on one other Cannes Jury in 2011.

Frank Washkuch
News Editor at PRWeek, the leading industry magazine covering the PR and communications industry and an adjunct lecturer in the City College of New York’s Branding + Integrated Communications program. He is a former newspaper journalist and a 2002 graduate of Fairfield University, where he was editor-in-chief of the student newspaper his senior year. Frank and his wife, Danielle Lipp, live in Brooklyn, New York.

Peter Harris
CEO of Grayling US, specializes in reputation management and has managed reputations across consumer product, technology, retail banking sectors. At MSLGroup he worked as North America Corporate Practice lead, Global Engagement Director for United Technologies, and head of the agency’s Strategic Partnerships and Alliances.

Account Management / Planning Judges

David Olsen
Vice President Subscriber Business, Growth Markets at Tyco. An accomplished Fortune 100 executive with proven track record in increasing brand presence, lead generation and sales effectiveness. David has been named Ad Week “Top 10 Most Wanted Marketers” and featured in Ad Age 100 under 40.

Natalie Carey
Group Director VaynerMedia. Natalie has extensive expertise in managing a variety of disciplines, including 360 creative ideation and production, cross-cultural marketing, influencer activations, and long term strategic planning. She’s spearheaded efforts for leaders like Campbell’s, Anheuser-Busch, Johnson & Johnson.

Michelle Rowley
Associate Director, Account Planning at Deep Focus, and formally served as VP of Brand Planning for both Grey and SS+K. Michelle has managed strategic planning and developed consumer insights for clients such as: The Lance Armstrong Foundation, Time Warner Cable, U.N. Peacekeeping, American Red Cross, and Target.

Chip Walker
Chief Strategic Officer, BAV. Chip Walker is a brand, business and cultural strategist. He has led the strategy function at brand agencies (BBDO, Y&R), a marketing services agency (Wunderman) and at a digital/social agency (StrawberryFrog), giving him a truly multi-disciplinary perspective. He’s also lead strategy across the WPP companies for some of its largest clients including AT&T and Bank of America.

Mei Shibata
As Senior Director of Strategy at InterbrandHealth, Mei advises clients on brand strategy. She has gained a broad experience base over a 20 year career, spanning equity research, advertising, strategy consulting and entrepreneurship. Mei has a MBA and BA from Harvard, and an MS from a joint Harvard/MIT program.

Liz McDonnell
Director of Marketing at the New York Times and one of the spearheads behind the success of the native ad unit, T Brand Studio. The T Brand Studio is a result of the massive interest from advertisers looking to market their brands through the NYT platform.

Michael Doody
Founder and Chief Strategy Officer at The _________ Project, a strategy consultancy specializing in research, business strategy, creative strategy and moderation that lead to action.

Daidria Grayson
VP, Account Director at SS+K in New York City leading the Delta Air Lines account in strategic and creative development. Prior to joining the agency, Daidria led multicultural strategy for Coca-Cola and Wal-Mart at GlobalHue New York. With over 11 years of experience in the industry, she has worked on a range of brands.

Sadira E. Furlow
Senior Director, Brand Marketing – Water Portfolio at PepsiCo where she oversaw Superbowl sensation Puppymonkeybaby. She has over 14 years in the advertising industry helping brands like Marlboro, Verizon, Miller Lite, Sprite and American Family Insurance to build relationships with a diverse group of consumers. 

Creative Judges

Christine Aliferis
Freelance Copywriter/CD. Christine is an experienced, conceptual copywriter of digital, TV, print and non-traditional marketing ideas for the world’s most beloved brands. She has worked with Ogilvy, McGarryBowen, Atmosphere BBDO, 360i, Digitas, and Y&R Brand Buzz. Her clients include Hershey Bar, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, American Express, Dove, Ford, Kodak, Maxwell House, Miller, Sheraton, and New York Times.

John Colquhoun
Award-winning CD/Art Director and Illustrator for a wide range of clients including U.S. Bank, Celebrex, Little Caesar’s Pizza, HBO, American Express, AT&T, Planters, U.S. Navy, Outback Steakhouse, ASPCA, and the Ad Council.

Marcello Guidoli
Multidisciplinary Freelance Designer and Art Director. He has worked with Ogilvy & Mather, JWT, Grey NY, WWS, on a wide variety of branding and identity development projects. His client list includes Armani, Ferrari, Bass Ale, Sauza Tequila, Grand Central Terminal, IBM, E-trade, Wild Aid. He has won design awards from the Art Directors Club, Communication Arts, One Show, Graphis Magazine, and Print Magazine.

BIC Graduates 2nd Class

6/04/2016 Nancy 0 Comments


30 BICsters. One amazing class. From Argentina to Italy. From Denmark to Kansas. From Greece to Mexico. From Thailand, India, and Turkey to Minnesota and Brooklyn, USA. Each with a signature smile, grimace, or grin.  All with a special √©lan and bizarre food preferences. With college degrees as varied as industrial design, architecture, electrical engineering, and  linguistics, they’ve parlayed their BIC expertise and Master's degree into professional positions at places like Campbell Ewald, Y&R, BBDO, RooneyPartners, Infor, SAP, UMG, and VaynerMedia. In the past 24 months, their multi-cultural and cross-disciplinary talents have yielded GOLD pencils, a LAGRANT scholarship, Grad Symposium awards, a MAIP internship — even an Adweek article.  On June 1st, we celebrated them not just as graduates of the program…but as visionaries who will lead us into the future with integrity, nimble minds, grit, lots of heart, and good humor.

And we sent you out with style: FLOTUS Michelle Obama was the commencement speaker!!

Onward, BIC Class of 2016. Stay curious.







FLOTUS Michelle Obama being awarded an honorary degree at CCNY 2016 Commencement

Big BIC Congratulations to Eloisa Andre Gaona, Edward Arredondo, Marika Bailey, Cassondra Bazelow, Kenneth Bracho, Stephen Carnell, Emilio Colombrino, Alex Dean, Donna Dei-Baning, Castro Desroches, Dalyn Francis, Megan Fullagar , Himani Gupta, Shana Jeannot, Andy Kwan, Rolando Leal, Nicole Lebenson, Magdalina Mavropoulou, Josephine Monberg, Brian Mortensen, Anthony Mundle, Ivan Ramirez, Nick Ramsay, Ahmet Reisli, Antonio Richardson, Sahil Shah, Ken Sheldon, Piyarat Songcharoen, Delprado Talylor, and Jin Wei!

And the Client Pitch Winner is...

6/04/2016 Nancy 0 Comments

Team Alchemie pitched its campaign to launch the artist Jack Garratt.
 This Spring, BICsters in the Corporate Capstone partnered with Universal Music Group (UMG) on the assignment of a lifetime: Design a campaign model to launch an emerging artist that would appeal to a youthful market segment without the appearance of over-commercialization. Challenging, eh? But that's not all.  Ray Mia (CCNY '01) of UMG’s Advanced Media division had an even loftier goal: He hoped to leverage the BIC campaigns as a way to position UMG as the global leader in music across a variety of platforms to help it become -- and be seen as -- a trans-media content and experience producer rather than simply a music publisher.
Team Lunchbox presented a campaign to launch the artist Alessia Cara
Team Kaleidoscope presented a campaign to launch the artist Halsey
Remaining in the same teams that anchored the Fall Non-Profit Capstone, BICsters pitched their campaigns for Alessia Cara, Halsey, and Jack Garratt on May 19th to UMG’s Ray Mia and Iain Bruce who flew in from London to review the work and select the winner.


After nearly an hour of deliberating, the client chose the campaign "Jack Garratt LOCALLY SOURCED" created by BIC team Alchemie comprised of Edward Arredondo, Stephen Carnell, Donna Dei-Baning, Castro Desroches, Andy Kwan, Magdalini Mavropoulou, Naushi Perera, Piyarat Songcharoen, Antonio Richardson, and Sahil Shah.
Alchemie’s campaign was anchored in a key strategic insight: Jack’s Garratt’s audience is part of an artisanal movement which values human output, non-mechanical aspects of creativity, and attention to detail, but because that’s getting more difficult to find in the mass produced, algorithmic driven music of today, Jack’s virtuosity fosters enormous fascination, leaving his audience hungry to know more about his craftsmanship, process, and inspiration. 
This led the team to develop a campaign that reimagined the typical concert tour. Instead of just being about stage appearances, it extends the time between concerts in order to explore Jack Garratt’s artistic inspiration from the source to the sublime.  So it’s not a tour, it’s a journey.
The work from teams Lunchbox and Kaleidoscope were also enthusiastically received. In his final remarks, Ray Mia believed that pieces of all the campaigns could actually be implemented. In his email epilogue to Capstone Professor Nancy Tag, Ray said, “It goes without saying that I'm seriously impressed by the output of your students. It is no exaggeration and to make abundantly clear: the raw abilities and sensibilities displayed by the people presenting were amazing. The margins between campaigns were so fine and [the presentations were so] polished and graphically astute… Many thanks for giving us the opportunity to participate.”

Go to our Gallery for more photos of The Pitch…

BIC Alumni SHINE

6/04/2016 Nancy 0 Comments


As BIC graduates its second class, we're able to celebrate something new: Hot-Off-the Press success stories from alumni of our very first graduating class. Here are just a few recent highlights from BIC Class of 2015 Movers and Shakers:

Ruth Ogbeab is now a Project Manager at Y&R. Founded in 1923, Y&R is one of the leading global marketing communications companies, with more than 190 offices in 90+ countries. Ruth will be working at its headquarters at 3 Columbus Circle in New York City.

After a successful run as copywriter at TBWA, Chris Villanueva just landed a new position at DigitasLBi, a global marketing and technology agency that transforms businesses for the digital age.

Carol Burns doesn't just have a new job, she's helping to define the position. As B2B Program Manager for Samsung's Executive Briefing Center, she will be responsible for creating memorable and highly engaging business relationships between Samsung and key high level personnel in other organizations, as well as other high profile individuals. In addition, Carol continues to mentor at Sponsors for Educational Opportunity. Previous mentees have received full rides to college.

Javier Garcia has a list of accomplishments since graduating last May. He is starting a new health and fitness lifestyle/activewear brand called Suyo. He competed in the 2016 New York StartUP! Business Plan pitch competition through NYPL and Citi Foundation with a grand prize of $15k. Javier also volunteers at Centre for Social Innovation where he receives mentorship from company founders. And...he's teaching!! Javier taught his first graduate level class, Global Advertising and PR, at NYIT and will return in the fall.

Not long after graduation, BICAA president Amber Jackson left her position as Senior Account Executive from Grey to accept a senior spot at 360i. She's a co-leader of the AAF Mosaic Alumni and Friends Association's New York chapter which just launched its new podcast Mixed Company. Amber is also a board member of the newly formed AAF Next Generation leadership Council as well as inaugural member of the NY Ad Club's Women's Fellowship program. She was 1 of 10 chosen out of over 100 applications. Amber continues to be a MAIP mentor and dynamic advocate for diversity and inclusion.