Bridging the Creative Divide

9/29/2020 Unknown 0 Comments

Why can't the research and creative/strategy communities just get along? This friction has long been bemoaned, but little studied -- until now. The ARF Creative Council's ground-breaking white paper, "How to Get Better Creative from Better Insights," came to life last week in a virtual happy hour and panel discussion that explored the barriers that undermine the creative process and product. BIC Program Director Nancy R. Tag was featured along with Kantar's Ann Green in the final session that focused on more effective and collaborative workflow.

The provocative virtual event,  Bridging the Creative Divide: How to Collaborate & Unleash Powerful Advertising, brought together speakers from a wide range of companies including Code and Theory, Kantar, VMLY&R and Wunderman Thompson. The panelists spoke about a number of issues including new ways of thinking about and communicating the results of research as well as how insights can enrich the overall creative process. 

The ARF Creative Council’s 2019 white paper on how researchers and creatives can collaborate and create powerful advertising included findings from an industry survey and a set of in-depth interviews that uncovered gaps between researchers, strategists, and creatives in their beliefs about the role research plays in the creative process. It identified three key sets of issues that lie at the root of the differences between researchers and creatives/strategists – language, trust, and workflow – and recommended concrete steps to overcome those issues through developing baseline understanding, aligning on goals and processes, and improving communication.

At the virtual happy hour, Prof. Tag's recommendations included more mid-process brainstorming and critique -- inviting people into each other’s process before minds are made up -- and sharing vocabulary to create a more collaborative environment, instead of purposely using intimidating jargon which puts up walls and stifles creativity.

You can check out the full white paper here

Ruder Finn BLOOMS with jacobstahl Acquisition

9/23/2020 Unknown 0 Comments

Huge BIC brava to founding BIC faculty member Sandra Stahl whose company, jacobstahl, has been acquired by Global Independent PR agency Ruder Finn. Together with her co-founder, Jeremy Jacob, Stahl will be part of the re-launch of Bloom, Ruder Finn’s long standing incubator agency as well as Bloom Health, an integrated communications practice exclusively dedicated to the growing healthtech sector.

As reported in PRWeek: “The Bloom arm of Ruder Finn has always been an exciting and important opportunity for us,” said Kathy Bloomgarden, CEO, Ruder Finn. “With jacobstahl at the helm, Bloom has the leadership and vision to develop and deliver what’s next in healthcare and corporate communications. On a personal note, I am thrilled to welcome Sandra and Jeremy back to the Ruder Finn family, where they both started their careers.”

“We’re thrilled at the opportunity to build Bloom,” said Stahl. "We know it takes a powerful combination of communications capabilities to tell a company or brand story that resonates and engages – particularly in today’s competitive environment. We are especially excited to draw on the Ruder Finn global footprint as well as its design and technology expertise for our clients, and very much look forward to bringing our stakeholder-centric approach to grow Bloom.”

As a BIC founding faculty and Acting PR Track Advisor, Sandra teaches BIC's Branding Influentials course. Her award-winning book, The Art and Craft of PR, was published in 2018. She guest lectures frequently at schools and conferences around the world. Jeremy Jacob, the other half of jacobstahl, is also a regular guest lecturer at BIC and recently taught B3022 PR Branding Campaigns last Spring. We’re so excited for Sandra and Jeremy as jacobstahl embarks on this new chapter and we can’t wait to see the work they do going forward. 

Read the citybizlist article here >>

Covid-19 Can’t Stop BIC ’22

9/15/2020 Unknown 0 Comments

Another year, another cohort of BICsters ready to change the world! Although this school year is going to look (and feel) different, this isn’t stopping the fearless Class of 2022 embark on their BIC journey. 

The new cohort conducted their orientation in our new “normal” with a virtual meeting on August 24th. The day kicked off with an icebreaker of ‘Two Truths and a Lie’ and included advising, design thinking and tips on navigating careers from our alumni.

BIC prides itself on its global reach and is excited to welcome BICsters from around the world. This year, BIC has 28 students from far and wide, including Mexico, China, South Africa, the UK, Afghanistan, Nigeria as well as students from closer to home like Brooklyn, New York. 

The institutions of the incoming class are just as diverse with the new cohort receiving degrees from within the CUNY system, like City College, York College and Baruch, to Texas A&M International, Florida State University, the Art Institute of Philadelphia as well as further afield like the University of Havana, Kabul University and the University of Leicester in the U.K.. 

From Biological Sciences to History, to English, Psychology, Journalism, Communications and Multimedia Computing, our new cohort comes from a wealth of academic disciplines and are fearless, curious and driven. 

During the jam-packed day, new BICsters had a chance to quiz our BIC Alumni Ambassadors Javier Garcia ’15, Andy Kwan ’16, Dhvani Unadkat ’17, and Natalie Alcide ’19 on everything from the program, to careers, to navigating the communications industry during a pandemic.

The day’s agenda also included a design thinking exercise with Gerardo Blumenkrantz, Associate Professor in the Creative Track, where students got to pair up and design Zoom backgrounds for each other. The new cohort did not disappoint, coming up with creative, fun and genius ideas. Check out some of the backgrounds below featuring Jody Karg ’22 , Jack Yu ’22, Shadiq Williams ’22, and Akasha Solis '22. 

While we weren’t able to end the orientation with our usual welcome back BIC Mixer, our BICsters were still able to connect and collaborate with hopes that we will be back on campus sometime again soon.

Even though none of us know what to expect as we enter the new semester, what we do know is that these fearless students are passionate, curious and ready to make their BIC dream a reality.

Welcome, BIC Class of 2022. We can’t wait to see what you bring as you embark on your BIC journey. 


4A's MAIP Fellows Coached, Critiqued, and Celebrated by BICsters

9/03/2020 Unknown 0 Comments

This Summer, BIC Program Director Nancy Tag teamed with Jacquelyn Green, 4A's Manager for Talent, Equity & Inclusion, to transform months worth of conversation into a dynamic MAIP learning segment which paired 300+ MAIP Fellows with 30 BIC Alums who helped coach and critique non-creative MAIP-ers on the value of digital portfolios.  

Traditionally, portfolios have been a creative professional's currency and evidence of proficiency. That’s why most portfolio-development programs (academic degree, certificate, and non-matriculated courses) focus almost exclusively on creative disciplines, such as copywriting, art direction, design, and other content areas.

However, the industry has changed. And so has portfolio technology. It won’t be long before the portfolio is a required part of every talent search. That's why Nancy and Jacquelyn wanted to bring this value to MAIP Fellows this summer -- giving them a jump start on their future. As a portfolio-driven master's program, BIC not only has deep expertise on how to develop portfolios "as evidence" of discipline depth in an integrated framework, but BIC alumni were uniquely qualified and eager to serve as coaches throughout the summer (and hopefully beyond). 

As part of the BIC portfolio-development segment, Professor Tag led a 2-part workshop that delivered the fundamentals of developing a digital portfolio for account managers, strategists, comms planners, and PR practitioners.  For over two weeks, 30 BIC alums provided feedback to MAIP Fellows who earnestly completed exercises, crafted positioning statements, and drafted portfolio homepages. The program wrapped up with an interactive mock interview with eight BIC mentors who’ve “been there/done that” in preparation for MAIP's culminating event, The Face of Talent. 

The success of this multi-faceted collaboration relied on an engaged group of 2020 MAIP Fellows and a dynamic (as always) network of BIC alums -- as well as the coordinating prowess of the 4A's team. Bravo to this inspiring bunch who will lead the industry into the future!  

Singleton Beato Joins BIC Board

9/01/2020 Unknown 0 Comments

A big BIC welcome to longtime BIC supporter Singleton Beato
, Global EVP, Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer at McCann Worldgroup, where she is responsible for designing and leading strategic initiatives that increase organizational capacity, innovation and growth. Singleton has championed the BIC Program since its launch in 2013, seeding BIC's first professional development fund and connecting BIC Program Director Nancy R. Tag to her vast industry network, including the 4A's Diversity & Inclusion Board. Since then, Singleton has provided opportunities for the program and its students, including serving as a BIC Portfolio Thesis Judge. 

With over 25 years of experience as an accomplished executive, Singleton is recognized for her success driving large scale people and organizational change initiatives across a wide range of industries, having held talent leadership roles at J. Walter Thompson, Crunch Fitness International, and Bloomberg L.P.

Previously, Singleton was EVP, Diversity Strategy and Talent Development at the 4A’s where she provided leadership and advice to senior advertising and media agency executives working to create and activate a strategic approach to D&I.  Singleton was the visionary and architect of high-profile initiatives including The Face Of Talent symposium and the Ad industry’s only Talent Leadership Conference, Talent@2030.  She also led the transformation of the renowned Multicultural Advertising Intern Program (MAIP) and the 4A’s Foundation.  And, after assuming P&L responsibility for Talent Development and Diversity related revenue streams, Singleton consistently delivered revenue and margin growth for the organization.
Singleton received a MS from Fairleigh Dickinson University and serves on several non-profit boards for the Brand Erwin Center for Brand Communications, AdWeek’s D&I Council, the AAF’s Mosaic Council and Own The Room as well as the Advisory Board of the Brand + Integrated Communications program. She has received numerous awards and accolades from the AAF, the 4A’s, the ADCOLOR Coalition, the National Diversity Council, and the World Diversity Leadership Summit.  Additionally, Singleton was named one of 2019’s Most Influential Women In Corporate America by Savoy Magazine and most recently one of AdWeek’s 2020 Women Trailblazers.