Mark St. Amant, Founder Grenadier, Author - Ideasicle Podcast #29

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We kick off this Labor Day weekend 2012 with one of the founders of new Boulder agency, Grenadier, Mark St. Amant. This guy's creative track record is impressive. He's creative directed at Arnold, Crispin and Sterling-Rice. He's written two books, one about Fantasy Football ("Committed: Confessions of a Fantasy Football Junkie"), and another about his attempt to play semi-pro football ("Just Kick It: Tales of an Underdog, Over-Age, Out-of-Place, Semi-Pro Football Player"), and plays guitar at Christmas parties. I've seen him.

He has a great sense of humor and some wise advice about creativity.

SHOW NOTES:

  • We begin by discussing Mark's new agency, Grenadier. His motivation in starting it and the role serendipity played in making it all happen.
  • We talk about Barkley, the employee-owned agency and partner to Grenadier, and how being independent affects creativity in a positive way vs. the holding companies.
  • I asked Mark flat out why all these agencies are spinning off CPB (Crispin) - first Goodness, then Victors & Spoils, then Made Movement, now Grenadier. Is something in the Boulder water? Or is Crispin a special place that is more of a creative incubator than anyone really knows? Listen and find out.
  • We talk about the benefits of having a passion outside of advertising. In Mark's case, sports and Fantasy Football. But also how such a passion can actually help you in advertising to get a job.
  • We discuss how creativity has changed over the years - Mark believes "the idea" needs to be bigger now. Bigger than just one medium. Related to that, Mark talks about Mark Moll's brilliant idea he's doing in Chicago, by himself, to build awareness for keeping pets safe in the summer heat.
  • In bringing up how easy it is to execute some of these ideas when social media can magnify everything, we talk about how traditional agencies might be looking at this new trend.
  • Mark then gives us some of his own tips on creativity - from reading, to living, to avoiding the brainstorm. Quote: "I hate brainstorms."

BIO:

Mark St. Amant is a Creative Director and author living in Boulder, Colorado. He's been in advertising since 1991 and been honored by virtually every awards show in the industry, including CLIO, Cannes, One Show, Kelly Awards, Effies, ADDYs, Hatch, and more. When not "moonlighting" in advertising, Mark has also written two books published by Scribner:?

Committed: Confessions of a Fantasy Football Junkie, the top-selling fantasy football book of all-time whose narrative prompted fellow author and pop culture guru Chuck Klosterman to facetiously dub St. Amant "the smartest man who's ever lived";

?Just Kick It: Tales of an Underdog, Over-Age, Out-of-Place, Semi-Pro Football Player, called "one of the best sports books of 2006" in a coveted starred review from Booklist.

He's also written for the Sunday New York Times, the New York Times.com "5th Down" NFL blog, NBC Sports’ Rotoworld.com, Salon.com, Boston Globe Magazine, and other digital/traditional publications; and he's appeared on various TV and radio programs from NPR, ESPN, and ESPN Classic, to Sirius XM Radio, Maxim Radio, and more.

After spending most of his career in Boston at Arnold Worldwide, Mark moved to Colorado in 2009 to work at Crispin Porter + Bogusky, but recently started his own shop called Grenadier, in partnership with Barkley, an employee owned agency.

Mark lives in Boulder with his wife and two kids.

38 episodes available. A new episode about every 30 days averaging 33 mins duration .