2020 BIC Picks

1/26/2021 Unknown 0 Comments

2020 was certainly a year for the history books. As we enter the New Year, here's a look back at some great reads and thought leadership pieces that BIC faculty and BICsters have been enjoying.  

Why Nostalgic Logos Are Booming Right Now 

By James I. Bowie

"In trying to restore a vision of the past, we may latch onto particular historical markers and exaggerate their actual prominence. “Est.” in this way is like the leg warmers worn to a 1980s-themed costume party: more common at the party than they actually were during the time the party celebrates." 

Read more here

Welcome to Your Bland New World

By Ben Schott

"Despite hiding in plain sight (and plain recycled packaging), this “slight of bland” has won the wallets of a generation that considers itself above marketing, and created some of the buzziest companies of the age." 

Read more here

Build a Better Content Strategy, Measure by Measure

By Zontee Hou, BIC Board Member and President and Founder, Media Volery

"Don’t expect isolated tests to produce universal rules. An ongoing test-and-learn approach is essential to future success." 

Read more here.

The Great Logo Debate

By Eliza Williams

"What is clear is that a logo for another event taking place many years in the future has distracted us enough from the calamitous state of the present world to incite much discussion." 

Read more here

The Great American Rebrand

By Jeff Beer

"We need a rebrand. How do we not only engage and enlighten our audience to once again see the promise of the American brand, but inspire them to help build it?" 

Read more here

Creatives Can Genuinely Shape Culture And Society By Working With Progressive Brands

By It's Nice That

"The theme of the evening was clearly about staying true to yourself and your vision, whether that’s pulling on your heritage, uplifting others or being staunch in your belief that a creative route is the right one." 

Read more here.

The Custom Color Treatment: How Brands Up Their Game with Specially-Formulated Hues

by Theresa Christine Johnson

"Thinking about the deeper meanings of colors, the process of making a product, and how that can get tied to particular hues, or the actual experience that’s offered and the feelings it evokes opens up possibilities for brands to not simply exist beautifully, but meaningfully, too." 

Read more here.

Post-COVID Forecast: A Resurgence of Marketing and the Beginning of the End for Madison Avenue’s Manslaughter

BMichael Farmer, BIC Board Member and Chairman & CEO, Farmer & Company

"I predict a slow but inexorable resurgence of marketing — a discovery of “what works and what does not” — and a re-establishment of agency partnerships to help make it happen. CMOs will then be able to join their C-Suite colleagues and hold their heads high." 

Read more here.

NYT debuts new ad program to help brands address sensitive topics

By Sara Fischer

"The Times is focusing revenue efforts more on subscription dollars from readers than on advertising dollars from corporations. The idea behind Pivotal is that the Times can leverage the unique data and relationships it has with its paid subscribers and its readers to make marketers' ads more relevant." 

Read more here

Brand purpose. The biggest lie the ad industry ever told?

By Tom Roach

"Purpose has to start deeper than marketing functions and penetrate more widely, but that doesn’t mean that marketing can’t be part of it. And in some cases, marketing can be the inspiration for it." 

Read more here.

‘Thumb-Stopping,’ ‘Humaning,’ ‘B4H’: The Strange Language of Modern Marketing

By Tiffany Hsu and Sapna Maheshwari

"The ad business is overrun with buzzwords and acronyms, and some people are saying it’s enough already...Every industry has its argot, but people who work in the advertising “space” seem to love insider language more than most. In news releases, ad copy and earnings statements, they have tortured plain talk in service of the sell, with Frankensteinian combinations and avalanches of acronyms." 

Read more here.

How Does Your Brand Purpose Stand Up?

By Scott Goodson & Chip Walker

"As we enter an era dominated by the pandemic, purpose will continue to be a top priority for company and brand leadership. While our research shows consumers clearly favor businesses with a higher purpose, it also shows that we are by no means dealing with a naive consumer when it comes to purpose." 

Read more here.

Tab, Coca-Cola’s Diet-Soda Pioneer and a ’70s Icon, Is Going Away

By Jennifer Maloney

“We love our brands, make no mistake,” said Cath Coetzer, head of Coca-Cola’s innovation and marketing operations. “We want to make sure that we create space for new.”

The company is winnowing products and brands that are small, aren’t growing and don’t have the potential to achieve a large scale, Ms. Coetzer said. “It’s about meeting our consumers where they need us to meet them.”

Read more here

McCann Worldgroup Promotes BIC Board Member Singleton Beato to Global EVP, Chief DE&I Officer

1/13/2021 Unknown 0 Comments

Big BIC brava to BIC Board Member Singleton Beato who has been promoted to Global EVP, Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer at McCann Worldgroup. In this role, Beato will work to ensure that the agency network take an aggressive approach to driving forward their mission to promote systemic and structural change.

Beato joined McCann Worldgroup as Chief Diversity & Engagement Officer in 2017. Here, she was responsible for designing and leading strategic workforce diversity and engagement solutions that drive business performance and innovation across McCann Worldgroup (MW) agencies.

Before McCann, Beato led diversity and inclusion strategy for the American Association of Advertising Agencies and was the director of human resources for J. Walter Thompson (now Wunderman Thompson) prior to that. Among her accomplishments thus far at McCann, the agency credits her as “the visionary” behind its annual “Day For Meaning” event that is aimed at bringing “individual and collective accountability to disrupt and shift daily behaviors and decisions that have traditionally been barriers to inclusion."

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. 

You can read more here

BICsters: Certified & Crushing It

1/12/2021 Unknown 0 Comments

Resume builders, skill-sharpeners, and brain enhancers: 2020 is all about the certificate, now with more free offerings from companies such as Facebook, Google, and Hubspot. That's why students in Professor Will Parker's B8501 Digital Integration one-credit intensive were given the grading option to either write a paper or get a certificate. This year, everyone went for the certificate. In fact, Will said that "there were quite a number of students who received multiple certifications - which is amazing!" The majority of students took a Google course and mostly Google Analytics, all of which are free online.

We asked Will, a BIC Board Member and co-founder and CMO of Retail Data Trust, his thoughts about certificates and why it's more important than ever to add them to your resume:

"Honestly, any certification looks great on a resume. Most employers are looking for demonstrated knowledge and certifications are a great way to show you know what you're doing. Also, it helps the employer evaluate your skills without making you take a test. Technical evaluation is one of the most difficult things to do in an interview. Your future boss is staking their reputation on whether or not you can do your job, not just whether they like you. Third-party credentials give them more confidence that you can do your work and takes some pressure off them to validate it. Not only do you say you understand Google Analytics, Google does. Finally, it's just a great way to stand out of the crowd, particularly in non-technical fields. Not many account and creatives can drive a conversation with the analytics or search team and they are going to need to. For anyone that has certifications, make a small place at the bottom of your resume for it."

When it comes to talking about certificates in interview, Will's advice to students was to "work it into your answers during an interview, talk about the certification process or how it makes better marketers. It's not always easy to connect with an interviewer but hard proof that you're the best fit for the job is difficult for anyone to pass up."

Now our BICsters won't just leave with an MPS and a portfolio but a repertoire of certifications which will help them stand out in the crowd when entering the industry. Bravo, BICsters!

BICsters are READI to Take on Breast Cancer

1/08/2021 Unknown 0 Comments

It was a challenging semester with a life-changing project. But the BIC Class of 2021 was READI. 

On Thursday, December 16, 2020, BICsters pitched four integrated marketing communications campaigns as part of BIC's non-profit capstone partnership with Memorial Sloan Kettering and CCNY in their research collaboration Redressing Access to and Disparities in Immunotherapy for Breast Cancer (READI).  With the guidance of Professor Katina Scott and Brianna Bishop, teams were tasked to create awareness about triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) and immunotherapy as a treatment option for Hispanic and Black women while empowering this community to advocate for better healthcare for themselves. 
Divided into four interdisciplinary teams, BICsters from each track utilized a cross-disciplinary approach to create distinctive integrated marketing communications campaigns based on a client briefing delivered by Devika Jutagir, Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and Adriana Espinosa, Assistant Professor of Psychology at CCNY's Colin Powell School back at the beginning of the Fall semester. Devika and Adriana returned as judges to award three winners: Best Campaign Targeting Hispanic Women, Best Campaign Targeting Black Women, and Best Overall Campaign.

Revolution8 kicked off the client pitch with its "Mi Vida Can TNBC" campaign targeting Hispanic women. Its research yielded the insight that for Hispanic families, health is a family affair and that while Hispanic moms are some of their children's best teachers, they don't appreciate the value of their own health when taking care of their family. The team's answer: Be a better role model for your children by putting your breast health first. This message was delivered in the form of a telenovela which allowed a complicated and clinical story to play out in dramatic and heartfelt ways, leveraging the telenovela's central role in Hispanic family culture. 

Studio 4 also targeted Hispanic women in their poignant “Love Gives You Strength” campaign. The team's research revealed barriers for women that included cultural disparities, language challenges, lack of insurance coverage, migratory status, lack of awareness, disinformation, and lack of information. To Studio 4, these challenges seemed so insurmountable that they could only be overcome by love. Therefore, its campaign focused on love's ability to vanquish fear and fuel a more actionable relationship between patient and doctor in the fight against TNBC.  

Targeting Black women, Nexus developed its “Your Voice. Your Breast. Your Story” campaign to encourage more honest conversations around breast issues and breast health. According to Nexus research, societal taboos that prevent Black women from discussing their bodies have resulted in a complicated relationship with their breast health. This "breast-forward" campaign used bold imagery and language to trigger a more effective patient-doctor relationship. The team introduced a Breast Awareness Profile (seen below) as a power tool to make the conversation unavoidable and productive.  

The Fore also focused on empowering Black women with its campaign “When you do for you, you do for her, too.” Team research pushed them to channel the powerful force Black women are in society and turn it inward, but to do so without coming across as selfish. The campaign succeeded by connecting self-care to community building: When you do for you, you do for her, too. In other words, by getting screened for TNBC, you can help improve the outcomes of the lives of other Black women. 

Each group presented for 30 minutes to their peers, audience members, and judges Devika and Adriana. In the end, the client could only pick three winners: The Fore for both Best Overall Campaign and Best Campaign Targeting Black Women. Studio 4 won for Best Campaign Targeting Hispanic Women. 

After the winners were announced, Adriana remarked, "it's all impressive and energizing. All four teams obviously took this project very seriously and we really appreciate all the effort you put in and how you came at this assignment from different angles. All amazing." Likewise, Devika noted how "a lot of the research resonated with us. We will be integrating many campaign elements into our outreach."  Katina echoed the clients' feedback, ending the evening by saying how proud she was of her students' “tenacity, passion for their ideas, focus, and real determination to get it right especially when I push back.” 

The Non Profit Capstone is not only a signature requirement of the BIC program, but pivotal to next semester's Corporate Capstone taught by BIC Program Director and Professor Nancy R. Tag each Spring. Nancy, who was in attendance, remarked “I cant wait to work with these teams next semester! Each one of you did really powerful work that will truly make a difference in this world.”

Past non-profit capstone clients have included CUNY Arts, Sandy Hook Promise, The Grove School of Engineering, Columbia Children’s Health, The Colin Powell School for Civic and Global Leadership, and the UJA.

Foundation FOCUS: Governors Island Multi-Media Campaign

1/08/2021 Unknown 0 Comments

The BIC Class of 2022 wrapped up their foundation semester by presenting multi-media campaigns for Governors Island to Professors Gerardo Blumenkrantz and Nancy R. Tag as well as to Clay Grable, Marketing Manger of The Trust for Governors Island. As part of B2002 Idea Development, this semester-long project inspired student teams to strategize, conceptualize, and then execute a multi-media communications campaign that included the four "C's" of content (using 2-D, time-based, interactive, and story-building elements), context, connection, and conversation via Paid, Earned, Owned, and Shared media channels.
On a warm Sunday in September, students rode the ferry to the 172-acre island in New York Harbor for field research. From there, each section identified a business and marketing problem in order to come up with the first part of BIC's S-A-D model: the strategic message. Teams of three conceptualized Big Ideas before executing synergistic multi-media elements designed to build brand value and engage Millennial New Yorkers. 

In the final stages of campaign development, Professors Blumenkrantz and Tag imitated real-life challenges by throwing students a curveball that needed to be folded into their campaign narratives. For Nancy's class, it was an unplanned visit to New York City by newly elected President Joe Biden. Gerardo's class needed to leverage a rare whale sighting in New York Harbor -- which actually (and coincidentally) happened just days before final presentations.  
Governors Island Marketing Manager Clay Grable was an unexpected guest at final presentations on December 9th  -- another curveball! He expressed appreciation to the students for helping him see the island with fresh eyes and was eager to share the work with his fellow Trustees in the new year.  

Be Your Own Brand. Why Not? Everyone Else's Is Taken.

1/08/2021 Unknown 0 Comments

The 2020 World Famous BIC Brand Identity Guidelines are here!!  

As a parody of corporate ID guidelines, this semester-long project in Professors Gerardo Blumenkrantz and Nancy Tag's Idea Development course not only allows for personal reflection and analysis, but forces students to develop some basic digital design skills, some for the first time. A requirement of the project is that all students use at least Photoshop and InDesign from the Adobe Creative Suite. 

When students presented their work on November 18th, they didn't let the Zoom grid inhibit them from sharing their personal brand guidelines. In some cases, they even took advantage of the virtual platform by producing videos and getting creative with how they communicated this signature project. 

At the end of the presentations, Professor Tag asked the question: "Before this assignment, who had ever used Adobe's InDesign and Photoshop?" Less than half of the class raised their hands. And yet, the results were quite incredible -- from all three tracks.

Here are a few examples of the spectacular work done by the BIC Class of 2022. For a larger sample of student ID Guidelines, go to our Behance portfolio page: https://www.behance.net/CCNY-BIC.