Rapid Fire Tough Advise

Back in the day, an aspiring copywriter or art director had to call creative directors on the phone and beg for 20 minutes of their time. Thanks to ihaveanidea’s Portfolio Night, aspirants may now pay a fee and see a bunch of CDs in one place.
Here’s how the New York Times describes it:

There are not a lot of job openings on the highly coveted creative side of advertising agencies, but there are lots of hopefuls desperate to land one.
So desperate that nearly 75 aspiring young creative types paid $35 each, and in many cases traveled across the country, to attend Portfolio Night, an industry-sponsored event last Thursday that put attendees face-to-face with their professional idols: creative directors and copywriters.
“At the end of the day, there’s 5,000 young people in America looking for one copywriter job,” said Scott Goodson, the chief executive and chief creative officer of StrawberryFrog, an advertising agency in New York.

It is hard to get your first big break in the ad industry, but I don’t know about the numbers Goodson’s spouting. Maybe that’s what it looks like from his Henry Miller chair. However, I think it’s natural for ad people to inflate their importance, much in the way elite college grads, or certain fraternity brothers, might.



About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.