Wednesday, May 2

A night with Alex Bogusky

Last Thursday night, my boss and I attended the New Denver Ad Club event at DU. It featured Alex Bogusky of Crispin Porter + Bogusky being interviewed by our own John Temple, the publisher/Editor of the Rocky Mountain News. What a fantastic event.

CP+B just opened an office in Boulder and Alex runs the show there. They are the magicians behind the new Burger King, Volkswagon, and Mini Cooper campaigns. You have seen them, yes you have.

I was skeptical of how Alex would present himself. Usually ad agencies boast big, fat egos and snobbery beyond any level of tolerance I have. I also was eager to see what kind of attitude and mantra he approaches each project. I was blown away. I came away from the event with more inspiration and knowledge than I knew I had in me, lately. I was especially intrigued and inspired with the use of the word "we" in all his talk. He never spoke about "me" or "i" except when absolutely imperative. It is obvious why CP+B is so successful. They showed videos which to me were basically testimonial white papers on how they started a project and what it grew into over the course of creativity, production, distribution and results. Amazing.

Alex gave us more information that I think he intended which, by no means, will ever come back to haunt them, but I cherish all I learned from his talk. One of the biggest bits of info I gained was that to really succeed with a client's wishes to build brand, or indentity, you must BECOME your client. You must eat, sleep and breath your clients business. I have always tried to follow this with my clients, but never to this degree. I believe that you do not necessarily have to give up your own life but you must spend a good portion of your day transforming your thought processes to what your client's AND your target audience's motivations are. There are different degrees to this, too. If you are building a website and new brand, you must dig deeper than say, if you are just designing a business card, but there is a level of submersion for each project you go through.

Thanks Alex Bogusky, and to Mr. Temple for the intriguing questions.

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