Ad Age Ad Lib

Ad Age


Ad Lib features unscripted conversations with some of the biggest personalities in media and marketing, speaking off the cuff with Ad Age editor Brian Braiker. The goal here is to do away with spin and jargon, and get to know some of the more influen...Show More

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Bryan Yasko, president, Johannes Leonardo

23:31 | Mar 21st

It’s been a busy couple months for Johannes Leonardo. In February the shop announced that it would buy a "significant" portion of itself back from WPP. Then, weeks later, another tantalizing bit of news: Volkswagen named JL its lead agency. Bryan Yas...Show More

Marketer’s Brief

30:08 | Mar 19th

Electrify America, a subsidiary of Volkswagen Group, is overseeing a 10-year, $2 billion investment on zero-emissions vehicle technology and awareness. The group's marketing director, Richard Steinberg, discusses what it is doing to help nudge the EV...Show More

Sebastian Tomich, global head of advertising, New York Times

43:18 | Mar 14th

In a digital media landscape littered with layoffs, mergers, acquisitions and bankruptcy, the New York Times remains a bright spot. Last week, the Times reported adding more than a quarter million new digital-only subscriptions in its fourth quarter ...Show More

Marketer's Brief

27:52 | Mar 12th

In a 20-year marketing career with Anheuser-Busch, Bob Lachky oversaw some of the most memorable ad campaigns in beer, including “Whassup,” the Budweiser Frogs and Real Men of Genius. Lachky, now a consultant, joins us to talk about the brewing marke...Show More

Ryan Ford, Chief Creative Officer and EVP, Cashmere

43:37 | Mar 7th

The brand wizards behind Snoop Dogg’s career, Cashmere has done work on “Black Panther,” “Get Out,” “Atlanta” and more. Beyond entertainment, it also counts as clients BMW, Jack in the Box, Adidas, and Diageo among others. Cashmere’s Ryan Ford joins ...Show More

Marketer's Brief

24:17 | Mar 4th

Iconic brands are struggling to remain relevant in today's food industry. More evidence came with Kraft Heinz’s recent $15 billion asset write-down. We examine the fallout and why Kraft’s fall could be good for ad agencies.

Ben Lerer, CEO, Group Nine Media

51:46 | Feb 28th

Group Nine Media was formed in 2016 with a $100 million investment from Discovery and today rolls up four media brands: Thrillist, NowThis, the Dodo and Seeker. By combining the brands under one holding company, CEO Ben Lerer says that he’s gained a ...Show More

Bob Pittman, CEO, iHeartMedia

43:06 | Feb 21st

If you wrote iHeartMedia off as DOA last year, it may have been too soon. Last month the radio giant gained approval for a plan to emerge from bankruptcy, and Bob Pittman has a mandate to transform the company. The platform now boasts more than 120M ...Show More

Tim Cadogan, CEO, OpenX

38:47 | Feb 14th

Independent ad exchange OpenX raised eyebrows in the programmatic realm last month when it announced a five-year agreement totaling more than $110 million with Google to use its cloud computing services. The news came just a month after the supply-si...Show More

Marla Kaplowitz, president and CEO, 4A's

31:32 | Feb 7th

In a time where there is no shortage of gloom and doom in the agency landscape, the job falls to Marla Kaplowitz to be its biggest booster. Kaplowitz joins this episode of Ad Lib to field questions about the agency talent crunch, consultancy creep, b...Show More

Laura Hutfless, FlyteVu Agency

28:54 | Jan 31st

With its first Super Bowl ad, Bumble set out to empower women both in front of and behind the camera. On this special Super Bowl edition of the Ad Lib podcast, Laura Hutfless, partner at FlyteVu Agency, which worked on the ad, discusses how the socia...Show More

Azania Andrews, Michelob Ultra

30:46 | Jan 29th

Michelob Ultra will air two commercials in Super Bowl LIII – one featuring robots and the other making a direct appeal to female football viewers. Azania Andrews, VP marketing, at the Anheuser-Busch brewer, joins this special Super Bowl edition of th...Show More

Erika Nardini, CEO, Barstool Sports

40:30 | Jan 24th

A publisher of podcasts, radio shows and online articles about sports and sports culture, Barstool Sports has a robust commerce and pay-per-view events business to feed its rabidly dedicated fanbase. It is, to hear CEO Erika Nardini tell it, the publ...Show More

Keith Grossman, Bloomberg Media global chief revenue officer

41:32 | Jan 17th

Bloomberg Media has been experimenting across the board lately — from its consultancy play to an aggressive over-the-top streaming strategy to TicToc, a video partnership with Twitter. Joining us on the podcast is chief global revenue officer Keith G...Show More

Meg Goldthwaite, CMO, NPR

29:43 | Jan 10th

Twenty-one percent of the population now owns at least one smart speaker. A full 14 million people in the U.S. got their first smart speaker device in 2018 — meaning voice as a topic of fascination is not going away any time soon. From the floor of t...Show More

Shannon Simpson Jones and Yadira Harrison, co-founders, Verb

33:03 | Dec 20th, 2018

Verb boasts both traditional agency chops and consultancy offerings for both brands and other agencies — with a specialty in experiential. Founders Shannon Simpson Jones and Yadira Harrison, both former VPs of the Civic Entertainment Group, join us t...Show More

Ben Wiener, CEO, Wongdoody

31:29 | Dec 13th, 2018

Seattle-based creative shop Wongdoody celebrated its 25th anniversary this year — as it did so, it was acquired by Indian tech giant Infosys. It is, says CEO Ben Wiener, a great time for an agency like Wongdoody. As the big advertising holding compan...Show More

Edward Felsenthal, CEO and Editor-in-Chief, Time magazine

38:32 | Dec 6th, 2018

Days after Marc Benioff and his wife Lynne closed on their purchase of Time, the new owners gave its editor, Edward Felsenthal, the additional title of CEO. Felsenthal discusses his role in the negotiation process and where he plans to take things. T...Show More

Julio Bruno, CEO of Time Out Group

32:54 | Nov 29th, 2018

In 2015, when Julio Bruno took over as the chief executive at Time Out, it was taking on heavy losses. An executive who had held senior positions at Diageo and TripAdvisor, Bruno saw an opportunity. Now, three years on, as Time Out celebrates its 50t...Show More

Karina Wilsher, Anomaly’s next global CEO

28:27 | Nov 20th, 2018

After 14 years at Anomaly, founding partner Karina Wilsher will be assuming the global CEO title at the agency. Currently the global COO, Wilsher has long been groomed for the new role and will assume the chief executive position in January. True to ...Show More

Aaron Walton, co-founder, Walton Isaacson

46:54 | Nov 15th, 2018

The co-founder of 14-year-old agency Walton Isaacson first went to work for the brand side in 1983 -- for Pepsi specifically, which would take Walton on tour with a singer by the name of Michael Jackson. Now, 35 years later, Walton is still at cultur...Show More

Lizzie Widhelm, Pandora svp of ad innovation

34:40 | Nov 8th, 2018

In September, satellite radio company Sirius XM offered to plunk down $3.5 billion to acquire streaming music service Pandora. Joining us today is Pandora svp of ad innovation Lizzie Widhelm to break down what the Sirius offer means to Pandora — and ...Show More

Rich Antoniello, CEO of Complex Media

43:31 | Nov 1st, 2018

Rich Antoniello, CEO of media brand Complex, joins us for a wide-ranging conversation covering everything from media’s pivot to revenue diversification to how Complex’s joint acquisition by Hearst and Verizon in 2016 has been playing out for the bran...Show More

Troy Ruhanen, president and CEO, TBWA Worldwide

35:24 | Oct 25th, 2018

An Aussie giant of a former Rugby player, Troy Ruhanen joined TBWA as president and CEO four years ago. Today he joins us on the Ad Lib podcast to spill some tea on his competitors — including WPP and Publicis — and give us some insight into clients ...Show More

Frances Webster, co-founder and CEO, Walrus

23:57 | Oct 18th, 2018

Launched in 2005, Walrus is a fiercely independent shop that’s worked with such clients as Amazon, HBO, and Staples. Frances Webster — who co-founded Walrus with her husband, Chief Creative Officer Deacon Webster — has been outspoken about the need t...Show More

Andrew McKechnie, chief creative officer at Verizon

38:29 | Oct 11th, 2018

For the past 18 months, Andrew McKechnie has been building Verizon’s in-house agency, 140. Networks are tough to make especially sexy. Still, McKechnie comes by the gig honestly. He had most recently served as global group creative director at Apple,...Show More

Jon Steinberg, Cheddar founder

32:57 | Oct 4th, 2018

After a five-year stint at BuzzFeed and a brief run as the CEO of the last thing you might think to do is start a TV network. From scratch. Yet that’s precisely what Jon Steinberg did. Steinberg launched Cheddar Inc in 2016 with the goa...Show More

Refinery29’s Philippe von Borries and Piera Gelardi

37:36 | Sep 27th, 2018

As two of the four co-founders of media and entertainment company Refinery29, Philippe von Borries and Piera Gelardi have used a pro-women, taboo-shattering ethos to build a behemoth catering to the interests and cravings of young women that reaches ...Show More

Nick Brien, CEO Americas of Dentsu Aegis Network

35:15 | Sep 20th, 2018

It’s been just over a year since Nick Brien — a former CEO of both McCann Worldgroup and iCrossing — took the reins at Dentsu Aegis Network Americas. We talk about Dentsu’s goal of becoming a 100 percent digital business by 2020, Brien’s background i...Show More

Studio 71 co-founder Reza Izad

37:09 | Sep 13th, 2018

From Canadian YouTube superstar Lilly Singh to vlogger Roman Atwood to Good Mythical Morning with Rhett and Link — Studio 71 is the media agency behind videos that generate a reported 9.5 billion views across platforms every month. Co-founder Reza Iz...Show More

Wondery founder and CEO Hernan Lopez

29:29 | Sep 6th, 2018

When Hernan Lopez left his post as president and CEO of Fox International Channels in 2016 to launch a podcast company people asked him a straightforward question: Are you nuts? But he saw parallels between the nascent medium of podcasting and the ca...Show More

Sub Rosa founder Michael Ventura gets empathic

32:10 | Aug 30th, 2018

Michael Ventura, the founder of the New York strategy and design consultancy Sub Rosa, joins us on this episode of Ad Lib to discuss empathy, what he means by it, how he arrived at it as a guiding principle and how it’s won him some surprising client...Show More

How Terry Young, CEO of Sparks & Honey, is mapping culture

30:38 | Aug 23rd, 2018

Terry Young, the CEO of Sparks & Honey, joins us on the Ad Lib podcast to talk about how the agency maps culture. Every day at noon everyone stops what they’re doing for an hour for a briefing that distills the Internet’s latest (and next) obsessions...Show More

USA Today Network CRO Kevin Gentzel

38:57 | Aug 16th, 2018

News is a tough business. And local news is even tougher. USA Today Network has seen continued growth in digital revenue, but not enough to offset declines in traditional advertising. Tasked with solving that riddle is Kevin Gentzel, who joins us on ...Show More

Arnold Worldwide CEO Kiran Smith

25:47 | Aug 9th, 2018

Kiran Smith joins the podcast to discuss the challenges she faces in her new job, what she brings to the table as a former marketer and what she’s learning from clients like Progressive and Jack Daniels.

Carla Serrano,  CEO of Publicis New York and Chief Strategy Officer of PublicisCommunications

24:57 | Aug 3rd, 2018

Serrano joins the podcast to discuss what distinguishes the Publicis strategy at a time when holding companies are under pressure from clients to cut costs and under siege from consultancies and tech giants Google, Facebook and Amazon. Plus we talk a...Show More

Bill Holiber, President & CEO of US News

32:20 | Jul 18th, 2018

For a publication with “news” in its title US News doesn’t focus much on what’s happening in the papers these days. Formerly known as US News and World Report, the publisher is something of a digital pioneer. The media brand ditched its print magazin...Show More

Maria Bartiromo, Fox Business

46:02 | Jul 10th, 2018

The Fox Business anchor joined the "Ad Lib" podcast before her news-making interview with President Trump last week. Here, Bartiromo discusses her evolution from a CNBC pioneer—where she was the first reporter to broadcast from the stock exchange flo...Show More

Mark DiMassimo, CEO of DiMassimo Goldstein

33:09 | Jul 5th, 2018

With 22 years heading up an independent agency under his belt, DiMassimo Goldstein’s Mark DiMassimo believes traditional advertising’s days are numbered.

The Trade Desk’s Brian Stempeck

32:36 | Jun 28th, 2018

Today we are joined by Brian Stempeck, chief client officer for the Trade Desk and rhythm guitarist for the company band, whose job is, in part, to translate the bewildering jargon of the ad tech industry and parse the challenges and opportunities ar...Show More

Michael Wolff

23:00 | Jun 20th, 2018

A consummate media insider for decades, Michael Wolff, the journalist-provocateur-entrepreneur, shot into the public consciousness in January with the publication of his sensational peek inside the Donald Trump White House, “Fire and Fury.” On this e...Show More

Shingy, digital prophet, Oath

25:20 | Jun 18th, 2018

You may not have heard of David Shing, but you probably know about Shingy. The self-styled “digital prophet” at Oath – the Verizon-owned juggernaut that comprises AOL, Yahoo, the Huffington Post and some 50 media and b-to-b brands – is in Cannes on a...Show More

Havas Creative North American Chairman and CEO, Paul Marobella 

34:01 | Jun 14th, 2018

Paul Marobella joins the Ad Lib podcast to discuss the advantages of being owned by Vivendi as opposed to a traditional advertising holding company, creating a culture of creativity and what he’s looking forward to in Cannes.

Mastercard CMO Raja Rajamannar

48:10 | Jun 7th, 2018

An expansive marketer in an era of the incredible shrinking CMO, Rajamannar joins the Ad Lib podcast to discuss what he calls the CMO existential crisis. We talk about marketing at scale in a time when people hate ads and have the power to block them...Show More

Ken Auletta, 'Frenemies' author

36:14 | Jun 5th, 2018

You're going to be hearing Ken Auletta's name a lot this month. Auletta, who has been writing the Annals of Communication column for The New Yorker since 1992, is the author of a new book about the industry's current existential crisis. "Frenemies" c...Show More

Andrew Swinand, Leo Burnett North America CEO

29:09 | May 31st, 2018

When Andrew Swinand was tapped to be Leo Burnett’s North America CEO last January, he had a daunting remit. Burnett had long been a flagship Chicago agency, but after losing McDonald’s in September 2016 the legendary creative shop had lost some of it...Show More

Terri & Sandy’s Terri and Sandy

35:20 | May 24th, 2018

Terri Meyer and Sandy Greenberg are the co-founders of the New York independent shop Terri & Sandy. Both refugees from the big holding company world — Meyer and Greenberg had worked together as a creative team at both J. Walter Thompson and FCB — the...Show More

Upfront and personal: The week’s big TV takeaways

42:47 | May 18th, 2018

The major broadcast networks wound down the 2018 upfront week Friday. Top-line takeaways: In 2019, look forward to more reboots, shorter ad slots and lots of live sports. If the scripted programming leaves a little to be desired there’s still a stagg...Show More

Ogilvy Worldwide CEO John Seifert

43:29 | May 17th, 2018

Earlier this year, John Seifert announced that Ogilvy would be undergoing a “refounding,” which he dubbed the shop’s “Next Chapter.” A 39-year veteran of the legendary agency, Seifert joins us to talk about what that entails.

Tim Leake, RPA

38:53 | May 10th, 2018

With giant clients like Honda and Farmer’s insurance, independent, LA-based agency RPA punches above its weight. Tim Leake’s mandate, when he joined the shop in 2014, was to nurture a culture of growth and innovation within the agency as it scaled. A...Show More

Bonnie Kintzer, Trusted Media Brands

37:38 | May 3rd, 2018

When Bonnie Kintzer became president and CEO of Trusted Media Brands in 2014, it was still called the Reader’s Digest Association. Job number one became bolstering the brand, reviving it financially after a series of bad investments and changing just...Show More

Hanya Yanagihara, novelist and T Magazine editor

40:44 | Apr 26th, 2018

For almost exactly a year now, Hanya Yanagihara has been molding T Magazine, the New York Times’ lifestyle and culture magazine, in her image. A recent refresh brought in a new logo and typeface, but the full bleed art, smart cultural journalism and ...Show More

Intermarkets’ Erik Requidan 

38:54 | Apr 19th, 2018

Under the hood of the Drudge Report, and other conservative sites like it — including Political Insider, Smith & Wesson Forum and MRC Newscasters — is its advertising marketing firm Intermarkets. And under the hood of Intermarkets is Erik Requidan, v...Show More

Intel’s Alyson Griffin

33:35 | Apr 13th, 2018

Intel, the PC maker best known to the wider world for its “Intel Inside” tagline, has pivoted from being a PC-centric to a data-centric company. It invested heavily in artificial intelligence, the internet of things, drones, autonomous cars and more....Show More

Patch CEO Warren St. John

40:04 | Apr 5th, 2018

Hyperlocal news has had a rough, ahem, patch in recent years. Undone by Craigslist and Facebook and Google, among others, local news sites have struggled to stay afloat. The end of 2017 alone saw the shuttering of both Gothamist and DNAInfo.  Patch C...Show More

Forbes’ Randall Lane

31:25 | Mar 29th, 2018

Synonymous with powerful, rich and usually white male entrepreneurs, Forbes is, like many media companies, being forced to evolve. Randall Lane took over as editor of the 101-year-old publisher in December of 2017, after Lewis D’Vorkin went on to run...Show More

Bleacher Report CEO Dave Finoccio

33:17 | Mar 22nd, 2018

March Madness is well underway and if you’re a sports fan of a certain age, chances are you’re tracking your decimated bracket on Bleacher Report. Bleacher Report CEO Dave Finocchio joins us on this episode of Ad Lib to discuss its distributed approa...Show More

Hearst’s Troy Young

33:02 | Mar 15th, 2018

It’s been five years since Troy Young came to Hearst to build out the magazine company’s digital division. Today as the global president of digital for a media empire that includes Cosmopolitan, Esquire, Elle, Good Housekeeping, Town & Country – the ...Show More

360i’s Sarah Hofstetter

34:51 | Mar 8th, 2018

In this episode of Ad Lib, Sarah Hofstetter, the global CEO of full-service digital-first agency 360i, discusses the agency's new Amazon practice, the future of voice, the best kosher restaurants in Cannes and more. (She also admits to a few regrets ...Show More CEO Jarrod Dicker

41:05 | Mar 1st, 2018

Last month, a subset of the media world snapped to attention when Jarrod Dicker left the Post, where he built out a lot of pioneering proprietary tech for the company, to become the CEO of something called, which bills itself as "an open, unive...Show More

Pop-Up Magazine’s Chas Edwards

25:06 | Feb 22nd, 2018

Chas Edwards is a co-founder and publisher of both Pop-Up magazine—a roving circus that brings magazine journalism to life in staged events—and the print publication it spawned, California Sunday Magazine. Taken together, the two represent a new kind...Show More

Aardman’s Heather Wright

30:47 | Feb 14th, 2018

You may know Aardman Animation as the creative force behind Wallace and Gromit, “Shaun the Sheep” and “Chicken Run.” This weekend its seventh feature film, “Early Man” comes to our shores. But the recognizably Aardman characters the studio is well kn...Show More

HP’s Antonio Lucio

40:06 | Feb 7th, 2018

There’s a lot of talk in the marketing and advertising industries about diversity — but not a ton of walking. Antonio Lucio is one of the walkers. Lucio talks about his diversity drive on today’s podcast and also breaks down his view of the state of ...Show More

Hungry Man Productions, Bryan Buckley

53:27 | Feb 1st, 2018

Bryan Buckley has nearly 60 Super Bowl credits to his name, directing spots for a bevy of brands ranging from and Cash4Gold to Coca-Cola and Bud Light. In this podcast, Buckley discusses what it’s like working with high-profile celebritie...Show More

Avocados From Mexico’s Kevin Hamilton

37:29 | Jan 31st, 2018

Kevin Hamilton has experienced first-hand the pressure to pull off a Super Bowl ad. As the senior director of marketing at Avocados From Mexico, Hamilton is charged with promoting the produce on TV’s biggest stage. In this podcast, we explore the con...Show More

Capitol Music Group’s Brian Nolan

35:31 | Jan 26th, 2018

Brian Nolan has a music fan’s dream job. As the senior vice president of Capitol Records’ in-house division focused on brand partnerships and licensing, Nolan is tasked with bringing new or under-exposed music to potentially huge audiences. In this p...Show More

Havas’ Harry Bernstein

34:20 | Jan 19th, 2018

If you’ve spent any time in agency circles, you haven’t seen a lot of people who look or talk like Harry. Tall, bearded, often tie-died and bolo tied, Bernstein, who goes by Harry Bee, is as apt to talk about clean living and guided meditation as he ...Show More

Fresh Digital Group’s Doug Robinson

35:37 | Jan 12th, 2018

Recent research has found that smart speakers such as Amazon Echo and Google Home will be in 55 percent of all U.S. households by 2022. That’s a lot of skills. To help us break down what this all means — for consumers, marketers, content providers, n...Show More

Quartz’s Jay Lauf

42:50 | Jan 4th, 2018

In a note at the end of 2017, Quartz publisher Jay Lauf gave his thanks to readers and advertisers, making it a point of pride that the commercial team at Quartz had been “very deliberate” about never putting its inventory on open exchanges. Sounds a...Show More

Rafat Ali

32:56 | Dec 29th, 2017

The co-founder and CEO of the travel media company Skift, Ali is a digital media veteran. We talk about his childhood in India and what made him want to get into media. He takes us on a tour through internet 1.0 with stops at and PaidConte...Show More

Dave Morgan

40:40 | Dec 18th, 2017

The Simulmedia CEO helps us make sense of the Disney-Fox deal, breaks down the state (and future) of addressable TV, explains the agency “existential” crisis -- and more.

Wendy Clark and Ari Weiss

55:32 | Dec 8th, 2017

It’s been just under two years since DDB brought Wendy Clark — a former top marketer at Coca Cola — on board as its North American CEO. And it’s been just under one year since she brought on Ari Weiss as the Omnicom network’s first chief creative off...Show More

Adam Moss

41:37 | Dec 3rd, 2017

The New York Magazine editor is Ad Age’s Editor of the Year — and the title he’s edited since 2004 is the Magazine of the Year. Today he sits down with Ad Age editor Brian Braiker to discuss his time at New York, how the media landscape has changed i...Show More

Michael Rothman

43:44 | Nov 22nd, 2017

The CEO and co-founder of Fatherly, a New York City-based media start-up that caters to millennial dads, is himself not a father. Rather Rothman, whose last gig was as Thrillist’s first business-side hire, is a digital media vet. On this episode of A...Show More

Michael Kuntz

43:59 | Nov 10th, 2017

The senior vice president of digital revenue at USA Today Network sits down with Ad Age editor Brian Braiker to discuss Gannett’s local play, working with Facebook Instant Articles and Google AMP, USA Today’s push into VR, Kuntz’s time at Gawker and ...Show More

Kay Hsu

38:51 | Oct 27th, 2017

As the global Instagram lead at Facebook Creative Shop, Kay is tasked with getting brands to adopt the Instagram Stories format. She discusses the challenges and opportunities brands see with the proliferation of ad formats – and the rise of ephemera...Show More

Neil Vogel

34:23 | Oct 20th, 2017

Since 2014, Neil Vogel has led the transition of to Dotdash. Under his stewardship, the IAC-owned company has gone from an all-things-to-all-people approach to a publisher of discrete verticals. We discuss the challenges and opportunities o...Show More

Jonah Disend

32:16 | Oct 12th, 2017

Jonah Disend is CEO and founder of Redscout, a branding a product development company with clients like Gatorade and Domino’s that he founded in his New York apartment in 2000. We talk about how his love of theater informs what he does, how the adver...Show More

Where Creativity Meets Strategy

28:57 | Oct 6th, 2017

Alain Sylvain is the founder and CEO of Sylvain Labs, an innovation and brand design consultancy. We talk about his background and the lack of diversity in media and marketing, his failures and his side hustles, which include launching a headphone br...Show More

Pop Vox 

46:36 | Sep 22nd, 2017

As chairman and CEO of Vox Media, Jim Bankoff oversees eight vertices including The Verge, SB Nation and We discuss what’s next for Vox and his past life as a Web 1.0 executive at AOL before and during part of the fall.