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December 2014 - Posts

  • Culture is King

    Jan 01 2015
    "Culture" is Merriam-Webster's word of the year. Now, why is that? Well, as a millennial navigating real life, I've come to realize how culture shapes my professional acumen and career path.

    While attending grad school at New York University, I spent endless nights at Bobst Library researching scholarly sources for my thesis topic: best practices for implementing culture as a business strategy to impact agency performance and retention. A mouthful, I know. Nevertheless, my research on the topic of culture revealed countless literature to sift through. Before ever stepping foot in an agency to earn my stripes, I learned how company culture plays a pivotal role in its business function, employee performance and creating value.

    Culture is the core that drives an organization’s successes and losses. At Phelps, I experience firsthand how it cultivates in our flat structure. Transparency, autonomy, feedback, no silos and great people — just to name a few — are the pieces that forge together to create value in the work we produce for our clients and to nurture our team members’ growth. It's not the ping-pong table or the magical cabinet of beer that opens when you complete your timesheet on time; culture is selecting the right people who will fight a good fight to keep your clients’ business and who are aligned with your agency’s mission and values.

    We can all agree that culture is cool and earned its rightful place as word of the year. I cannot predict whether “bae” will take the top spot in 2015, but culture will continue to be an exciting, controversial and thought-provoking topic of conversation for many years to come.

    Matt Burnam - Public Relations Coordinator

  • 2014: The Year of Digital

    Dec 26 2014

    Lately, it seems that every year is the “Year of Digital," and 2014 is no exception. From pictures that disappear within seconds to delivery of ramen noodles with a few taps of a finger, technology is being used at almost every point in our daily lives.
    Here’s a recap of a handful of things we saw in 2014.


    Kiley Story - Interactive Producer

  • Advertising is losing a real mensch (at least for now)

    Dec 18 2014


    Stuart Elliott is leaving The New York Times and the void the paper is about to suffer will not soon be filled…if ever. Never has there been a more authoritative, fair or passionate voice about the business, creativity and drama of our industry. As I console myself through the loss of his column, I become nostalgic about my many interactions with Stuart.
    Years ago, I first pitched him about some product campaign I don’t recall — I just remember being very green and unexcited about the pitch. I was ecstatic to receive a nearly immediate response that read something like, “no can do. but thanks. best.” Even his rejection made me feel like a million bucks! It was feedback — something woefully absent from many interactions with reporters, but not Stuart. He always got right back to you, whether to say he wanted more or no thanks.
    I once pitched him a story about an impossibly difficult board game that came with the chance to win $1 million. There wasn’t a huge national media buy attached but I always offered Stuart first pass at all my stories. I didn’t think he’d be interested, but he immediately called and said, “Roxana, if you’re giving away $1 million, I’m definitely interested.”

    My favorite part of working with Stuart was witnessing how much he loved his job, especially when he interviewed a smart resource. He’d become so gregarious and almost giddy — finding common ground and inside jokes. Listening in on those interviews was so fun for everyone involved.

    Once Stuart was an ally, he made sure to take care of you, whether it was sending a blind embossed Cartier thank you card or acting as media reference on a resume. I hope that wherever Stuart ends up next will happen soon so we don’t have to live without his commentary for very long.

    Good luck to a great guy.

    Roxana Janka – Public Relations Specialist

  • When Snapchat and Uber evolve

    Dec 09 2014

    deniz-kahriman-banner-engagementOn Nov. 17, 2014, a day now heralded as “Selfie Money Day” or “Bank Transfer Independence Day,” Snapchat users opened a message from Team Snapchat to learn that the messaging app would now allow users to send and receive money using payment app Square. Watch the exciting introduction to Snapcash, complete with song and dance here.

    As consumers, we were delighted to know you could make it rain without stepping a foot in the bank. As marketers, we admired Snapchat for adding an entirely new touch point and benefit in consumers’ lives.

    Unique app partnerships trended that week with news of Uber and Spotify teaming up to create a more seamless shared ride experience. Riders can now connect Spotify to their Uber account to jam to the beat of their preferred drums in the backseat of their Ubers.

    Both alliances show popular apps adding onto their original services and partnering with other apps to create another dimension to the user experience. These extensions expand the marketing playground: What other pairing can apps cook up to create a richer experience? How can brands utilize these new services to add new dimensions to upcoming campaigns?

    Connie Kwon - Public Relations Coordinator