Many great things have come from the minds of advertisers. Father’s Day. The Egg McMuffin. Countless turns of phrase: “Always the bridesmaid, never the bride”; “When you got it, flaunt it”. Unfortunately, a lot of terrible things have come from advertisers too. Bic for Her pens. Dr. Pepper 10. Low-cal beer in special slim cans — designed for the dainty grip of the weaker sex, of course.
When it comes to sexist marketing ploys, our industry is historically guilty for creating some of the dumbest shit on Earth.
So, the question was asked the other day: did we make shaving a thing for women?
I count my blessings every day that I work somewhere that values fun. Here at Nebo, we’ve got a Ping-Pong table, a championship-winning kickball team, Beer Fridays and Slack channels that range from The Bachelor to Soylent (though no one is in the Soylent channel, so maybe it's not that fun after all).
Nebo has more “distractions” than anywhere I’ve ever worked. But it’s also the most productive and efficient place I’ve ever worked. We work hard here at Nebo to make cool shit and make it right — and having fun plays a crucial role. According to Dr. Stuart Brown, founder of the National Institute for Play, “when employees have the opportunity to play, they actually increase their productivity, engagement and morale.” It’s been proven that employees who report having more fun at work are more engaged, have higher attendance and are less likely to take sick days.
But having fun goes beyond the candy drawer and the office dogs. To be successful marketers and advertisers, it needs to emanate from our work.
Here’s why having fun is the most powerful tool an agency can have.
Confession: I was a terrible college student. I was always five minutes late to class, asking for extensions on my papers, reading the wrong assignment and forgetting appointments with my professors. Yet somehow, I went on to get both my bachelor’s and master’s degrees, and all was Gucci.
How did I not flunk out? Because for every appointment I blew off or essay I forgot to write, someone always loaned me a convenient excuse:
“Oh, she’s just being a writer.”
Both of my degrees are in creative writing. If a med student pulled the same stunts, they’d be flunked in no time. But when you write short stories about zombies for a degree, people don’t hold you to higher standards.
From Ping Pong tables to ball pits to closets full of LaCroix, no industries are more envied for their office perks than advertising, marketing, and tech. But there is one perk that is more coveted than them all: office dogs.
At companies like Amazon, Mashable, and Google, office dogs are redefining what it means to be a “working breed.” A quick Google search will tell you it’s because dogs in the workplace increase employee happiness and retention. They ease our stress, encourage us to take breaks, and boost our creativity. These are all fine reasons to explain why dog-friendly offices are becoming more popular, especially among creative industries. But I suspect the real reason we love office dogs is much deeper.
That’s why, in honor of National Dog Day, I’m digging deep into the connection between canines and creatives.