Creative Circus, BBDO, Escalate, and Coca-Cola
This week my guests included experts from Creative Circus, BBDO, Escalate, and Coca-Cola. The focus of our discussion was centered around marketing/brand awareness through creative campaigns and experiential/word-of-mouth marketing. And we started by sharing the story about Creative Circus, an Atlanta-based creative school that recruits top creative arts students from around the country to continue their education and professional development in their 2 year program. A key feature of Creative Circus is not simply teaching creative arts/ad creation skills. Rather, Creative Circus also teaches the students fortunate to attend how to market themselves in the interview/application process and how to build a professional, well-constructed portfolio of work. With the combined quality of instruction in the creative process and portfolio development, the Creative Circus’s graduates have a high rate of placement with creative agencies upon graduation.
The Creative Circus collaborates frequently with such well-known firms as BBDO, the globally-known creative agency responsible for innumerable high-profile ad campaigns as seen during the Super Bowl, on our TV’s daily, and across the spectrum of media forms. Debbie Lindner, SVP and Chief People Officer stopped by to talk about how the agency will sometimes refer candidates who are seeking to work with BBDO to the Creative Circus for additional experience and development of their book of work. She talked about the fact that Creative Circus graduates clearly come out of the program prepared and ready to contribute to creative campaigns with a high level of ability.
Stu Sheldon of Escalate joined the conversation to talk about how Word of Mouth earned media adds an additional layer of engagement on top of well-planned, quality creative campaigns to boost effectiveness of brand campaigns. He introduced us to a frequent client, Zakia Holland, a Director of Brand with Coca-Cola (a personal favorite brand of mine). We talked about a number of experiential marketing campaigns Coca-Cola has employed to reach new customer bases such as those in the younger generations and when they launch new brands into the market place.
The Coca-Cola Company is the world’s largest beverage company, refreshing consumers with more than 500 brands. The Company and its bottling partners are dedicated to “2020 Vision,” a roadmap for doubling system revenues this decade, focused on five key areas—profit, people, portfolio, partners and planet. The Company has the strongest portfolio of brands in the nonalcoholic beverage industry – now featuring 20 brands that generate more than $1 billion USD in annual retail sales.
Katie Harmon, Marketing Manager of the Creative Circus
- BA, Art History, Criticism, and Conservation, Georgia College and State University
- Previous Representative and Event Coordinator, Coverdell Institute
- Former Self-Expression Coordinator, Carrera Model Program
- Hope Scholarship recipient, Weir Wells Study Abroad recipient
Debbie Lindner, SVP, Chief People Officer of BBDO Atlanta
- BA, Psychology and Finance, Missouri State University
- 25 years of leadership roles with BBDO Atlanta
- Board Member, BBDO Atlanta
- Member, National Association of Professional Women
Stuart Sheldon, Chief Advocacy Officer at Escalate
- BA, English and Journalism, Washington and Lee University
- Former Senior Brand Manager, Coca Cola Company
- Founder and Former Evangelist Prime, ConnectUs Marketing
- 2006 Coca-Cola North America Big, Bold & Inspiring Marketing award; Coca-Cola Worldwide Marketing Excellence award finalist
Zakia Holland, Senior Brand Activation Manager at Coca Cola
- MBA, Georgia Southern University
- 9 years in leadership role, Coca Cola
- Former Senior Account Manager, Ritz Carlton Hotel
- Avid Runner