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The Bad Podcast

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Going the social distance. The Bad Podcast, created when social lives were limited to social media (thanks COVID), seeks to answer the question that echoes through every corner of the advertising world: is this good? Hosts Amelia and Brian are on a mission to talk to every creative director, copywriter extraordinaire, art directing dynamo, swiss army social strategist, ECD, CCO, PFD, and SOS about what the fuck a good ad is. We’re so curious and SO stationary. So here we are to talk about the bad, the ugly, and what good advertising actually is with insight from the industry’s top creative minds.
25 Episodes
Tescia Deák is a Creative Director at the storied Los Angeles agency, Chiat/Day. Her portfolio is full of brilliant, purpose-driven work that would make the most cynical creative at Weiden & Kennedy envious. Like a widget that makes the whole internet more equitable. A downy commercial that ran so long it essentially sent the main actor into royalty retirement. Passion projects like a mentorship program that connects women to one another and to a support system that’s unprecedented in the boys club of advertising. And much, much more. Today you’ll get a front-row seat at her journey—the ups, the downs, and the philosophy that fueled her ascension into ad stardom. 
After an 18 year tenure as Department Chair at The Creative Circus, Dan Balser sent ripples around Ad Land by stepping down somewhat mysteriously. But as of a recent Ad Age article, the cat is out of the bag. This year, legendary ad house Goodby, Silverstein, & Partners will begin a new portfolio program at the agency dubbed "The Academy" that is completely tuition free. In the 21st episode of The Bad Podcast we talk with Dan about Academy's origins, its future, and who it hopes to help along the way. Dan is also a copywriter, father, husband, and host of Don't Get Me Started, a(nother) podcast about advertising with a 14 year backlog. 
Episode 20 is a special chapter in the story of the Bad Pod. We speak with Sean Conejos, ACD/CW at FCB and Brian's new boss. He tells us how his pre-law undergrad led him to advertising, his parent's roles in inspiring his creativity, what he looks for in a new hire, and who influenced his leadership style. This episode is buzzing with the excitement of the geographical consolidation of The Bad Pod to Chicago. Tangents include axe throwing, Alaska daylight hours, and favorite Chicago pastimes. You can find Sean's work and contact info at Thank you for being here and enjoy EPISODE 20 of the Bad Podcast!
Episode 19 starts with some ~personal news~ from Amelia & Brian and features digital nomad and creative recruiter at We Are Rosie, Joe Cole. He joins us from some pretty great parking lot wifi in British Columbia. He gives us a front row seat to an incredibly eventful career working for Creatives for Georgia and Block Power to turn Georgia blue and swing the tide of our national election, joining We Are Rosie and Clean Creatives almost simultaneously, and doing it all from different vans and timezones around the world. His personal mission is to make the world better and you can get some first-hand insight at how he does that right here in this episode. You can follow Joe at @joecacola and learn more about Clean Creatives at If you get the chance, it would make our whole poddy lives if you would leave us a review on Apple Podcasts or, heck, just tell a friend about the pod. You can find Amelia & Brian on Twitter at @ameliadirector and @bricoastal, respectively. Thanks for joining us! 
My-Linh Tran's career seems to be fueled by ambition and guided by a heart of gold. Their unique perspective has paved a way from the account side at Droga5 to their current role as an Inclusive Strategist. We talk with My-Linh about intersectionality, when the conversation about a campaign's inclusivity should start, and what it's like to evolve in one's career in real-time. This one is full of laughs, insights and no small amount of wisdom from our gracious guest. Thank you for joining us for episode 18 of TBP. 
Keni Thacker is the Founder of 100 Roses from Concrete, a network for professionals of color in the advertising, marketing media, and PR industries to connect, collaborate, and grow. Before founding 100 Roses he has worked at agencies like Golin, CMG, Wunderman Thompson, and JWT where he ran their Young Commodores program which helped introduce young creatives to the world of advertising. We talk about inclusivity and tokenism in advertising, what works and what doesn't in the fight against it,  and how much we hate spoilers. Links: 100 Roses from Concrete Site: A-List Interview with Keni Thacker on Apple Podcasts:
Zoe Scaman is the founder of strategy studio Bodacious and co-founder of MCX, an experiment engine reinventing entertainment and basketball with Mark Cuban. A self-described swiss army knife, she has honed her expertise across myriad fields like brand planning, entertainment strategy, digital comms, new product development, business strategy, and innovation. Her resume includes stints at notable creative agencies like Droga5 and Naked Communications, Ridley Scott Creative film studio, and leading consultancies Undercurrent, London Strategy Unit, and The Upside. She joined us from her London home to discuss her affinity for the unknown, why pitches are antithetical to making great work, and her industry-shaking article 'Mad Men. Furious Women.' about sexism and discrimination in advertising. 
This episode stars our very own co-host Brian "Isn't Outdoorsy but Lives in Alaska" Revels. We talk about his roundabout journey to portfolio school, his rather straightforward journey to Alaska, and why he can advertise for anyone but himself. Plus some impassioned takes re: Tik Tok. Enjoy!
Today, we are talking with Steve Bayley, a Chicago-based strategist - our first strategist on The Bad Podcast! -  at TEN35. Steve's journey into advertising has been both commonly circuitous and completely unique. It was driven by an insatiable curiosity that ultimately translated into an indefatigable talent. It has taken him from North Carolina to Georgia to Chicago where he has put that talent on brilliant display. As a strategist, he occupies a unique territory in agency life, at once a creative and an intermediary between client and agency creatives like some kind of advertising Hermes with Don Draper's pitch room prowess. This conversation is chocked full of insights and experiences from that territory that will be a benefit to anybody remotely involved with advertising or simply making a message that resonates with it's intended audience. 
Andy Pearson can outrun you. You might be faster, at first. But somewhere between mile one and 100, this McKinney Group Creative Director and avid ultra-runner is going to pass you. And while his infiltration into the world of long-distance running started one run at a time as you'll hear in this episode, his career in advertising reads a little bit more like cannon fire. From a trip to Cannes to pick up a Future Lions award as a student to working for legendary shops like Crispin, Porter & Bogusky to freelancing from Southeast Asia, Andy's career is propelled by an undeniable talent. (The evidence of which you can peruse at your leisure on the internet, specifically He joined us from sunny LA to talk all things advertising — what he values in a career, a creative team, and a client. 
Our guest this week is Laurel Stark Akman. She is a creative director at EA, overseeing global efforts for The Sims game. Which is legendary in and of itself, right? But we hardly even talk about the Sims because Laurel is, first and foremost a passionate agent for change.Outside of her role at EA sports, she has helped launch BlackTea, a video content series by and for Black Women in advertising created by Dotun Bello and hosted by Michelle Lawrence, presented by Muse by Clio. She co-founded Mentorship Matchmaking with Tescia Deak, which is a community and career-building mentorship model for underrepresented groups in advertising.She and Victoria Rosselli created Our Silent Partner, a reflection on creativity and mental health. And, last but not least, she and Kasia Karolak are on their seventh iteration of Next Creative Leaders, a portfolio competition highlighting work by women and non-binary creatives and presented by The One Club and the 3% Movement. And that one is especially relevant because this year’s Next Creative Leaders competition opens this week. So if you’re a female-presenting or non-binary creative, this is for you. And it’s totally free to enter.Laurel’s Site - Tea - Creative Leaders - http://nextcreativeleaders.orgMentorship Matchmaking -
We'll be right bad! Hear the details of our downtime, how Amelia's portfolio school experience has been going, our lukewarm takes on the marvel/dc universe, and a little shmandemic delirium in today's (and I mean this in the loosest possible terms) season finale. 
Nakita Pope is a branding expert. She is both the Design Chair and Diversity & Inclusion Advisor at the Creative Circus, founder of Branding Chicks, and most recently co-founder of the Bella Boss Box, a quarterly subscription box for Black women business owners. She’s also Brian’s former branding professor. As you’ll hear in our episode today, her affinity for teaching is part of what grounds her in her purpose and propels her through her career.   
Ike Peters is not only our 11th guest on the bad podcast, he’s one of Brian’s favorite musicians. He’s a Senior Copywriter at CJRW in Little Rock and is father to two boys and a brand new baby girl. He brings 10 years of experience and no small amount of charm to episode 11 of the podcast. Find him at @IkeYouGuys on TwitterJoin the Lowercases slack group for small agency copywriters:
Jessie Kernan is a strategist, storyteller, change agent, innovator, cultivator of talent, champion of equality and diversity, thought leader, systems thinker, business builder, boss mom, world traveler, and data geek who is driven by insatiable curiosity and an incurable commitment to doing the right thing.She is curator of We Are Rosie's Rosie Report podcast and, alongside We Are Rosie's founder, Stephanie Olsen, is spearheading a change to the status quo as we know it. Before joining We Are Rosie, Jessie put her 20 years of agency and industry experience to work for her own consultancy, Outside Wave. She was kind enough to join our podcast from Tumeculah, California where she was pulling double duty as mom and podcast guest during her daughter's volleyball tournament. Thanks so much, Jessie!You can find out more about We Are Rosie's mission and makeup at Thanks for listening!
Mary Buzbee is a badass. More specifically, she is a multidisciplinary creative badass from Alabama who got her agency start at Lewis Communications in Birmingham. She and her creative partner, Lauren, have forged an amazing career in a short time, garnering praise — including two Young Shits, six Addy’s, and a One Show Merit award, but who’s counting — and a position at the award-winning Kansas City agency, Barkley.  Since becoming an established advertising pro, Mary has never shied away from passing along the lessons she has learned in the industry. In fact, as you’ll hear in the episode, Mary has become somewhat of a mentor to Amelia. This episode is packed with wisdom and charm that is unique to the wonderful person that is Mary Buzbee. Enjoy!
Today, we’re going to get to know the BadPod’s own, Amelia Carney. To know Amelia is to love her, she’s an effervescent creative who lives in Chicago by way of West Virginia and when we were interviewing Brown & Browner’s Derek Walker he said in no uncertain terms, “You should interview her.” So that’s exactly what we did. This conversation starts with an apology from me, and takes us through some of the inclinations and events that put Amelia where she is today. And what could be coming next. 
Affectionately known by on Advertising Twitter, as “Ad Daddy,” David Griner is the international creative and innovation editor at Adweek and host of Adweek's podcast, "Yeah, That's Probably an Ad." He's been covering agencies, creativity, technology and marketing innovation for more than a decade.  Everywhere he goes he champions equality, diversity, and inclusion and never misses a chance to shine a light on his advertising fellows, young and old.Follow him for good vibes and food porn on Twitter at @griner Related links: Just Getting Started Podcast:’t Get Me Started Podcast: that’s probably an ad podcast:
Derek Walker is a badass. If the creators of Mad Men were to write a biopic about Derek Walker, they wouldn’t need multiple rounds of feedback to spice it up. The founder of Brown and Browner in Columbia, SC has seen a lot throughout a career that harkens back to a time when ad execs would occasionally punk out CMO’s in meeting rooms; A career that he has forged in the face of the baggage and bullshit that comes with being black in America. Somehow his love for the industry is stronger than ever. And it is precisely because of this love that he is an outspoken critic of the industry as well as an active force for change. The stories alone make this episode worth the listen, but it’s also chocked full of insights from his deep well of wisdom. You can follow him at @dereklwalker on Twitter. Enjoy the episode!
It feels reckless to describe Micöl Rankin by his professional title, but you should know that he’s a Senior Art Director at Moxie in Atlanta. The reach of Micöl’s personality and zest for life go far beyond such labels. What we’re trying to say is this episode is lit af. We talk with Micöl about taking every ounce of your humanity with you everywhere you go and the cost of downplaying who you are. He shares insights from a long career in the music industry and how it helped him crush this whole advertising thing.Micöl is host of the You Are Dope show on LinkedIn and someone you should really be following on Twitter @iamnovinov which is also his musical moniker. Micöl, we thank you for sharing your energy and time with us. Everybody else, you’re welcome. Enjoy the hell out of this one. 
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