|Don't Be Over 32 If You Know What's Good For You: Advice from BMA
By: Brian Keller
At the end of this true story is the advice.
This is not a typical ad column; we were looking for inspiration for our first annual advice column and were trolling social media sites, and guess what? Yes, we found something inspirational, and also found more signs that prove that the ad apocalypse is here. Actually, the apocalypse may be here.
I was on Facebook “friending” anonymous strangers, as that seems to be the thing to do on Facebook. I was looking for ad people to query about this column. So I figured I’d find some on Facebook, as that’s where you get new friends who you don’t know and they pour their guts out to you. I figured I’d get some friends and they’d pour their advertising guts out on my page, and maybe to me as well. I would take the material they provided and turn it into this column. I figured maybe I would meet some of these people, too. I could always use new friends to invite over for a bologna sandwich, Little Debbie Snack Cakes, and some powdered soft drinks.
Anyway, I saw a “group” that looked interesting and decided to join the group. I figured they would let me join and also maybe come over to my house to talk “advertising.” I had just gotten paid, so I had plenty of bologna and Tang. I cleaned the cat box, sprayed my kid with bleach, and was ready for company. I thought it would be neat to talk with a bunch of people who do what I do. We could talk about “the work” and use all kinds of cool clichés to show our passion. I was planning a dream salon with brilliant ad people. I would also dig for things that would be good “advice” for this particular column.
They let me in the group. I had a new group of friends. I was excited. I figured I would be prepared for our chatting, so I read what they aspire to. It was great. They were really interested in advertising and promoting the skill and science that goes into it. They were really interested in talking about it.
I saw they were interested in talking about advertising, only with people less than 32 years of age. Being a good friend and group member, I quit my job in advertising and immediately resigned from the group so I wouldn’t be forced out and victimized by TMZ. I did learn that; under 32 is great if you want an advertising career, and over 32 you’re worthless if you want an advertising career.
Here’s the advice: Everyone just shut up about age, be you young or be you old. Work hard, be talented, be hungry, be able to sublimate your ego, be able to develop and interpret strategy, be able to be as old as you want to be and don’t worry about it.
NOTE: We seem to do columns about an age-related subject every ½ year or so. Look for another one in February, as we’re sure that folks will just not be able to get over age anytime soon.
Story Two: I had a guy email me today via a social media-networking site. He didn’t know the name of the agency. He insulted one of the creative directors. He told us we needed his help. I pointed out that he was spending most of his time insulting us and writing to two different staff members. He told me we couldn’t afford his services, and he didn’t want to work for us anyway.
Here’s advice to him: I hope you get to be over 32 soon and can’t work in our business anymore.
Here’s the general advice: Know the name of the business you are calling for work.
Brian Keller is the Creative Director at teeny agency in Baltimore. He graduated from the University of Maryland (English), went to grad school at NYU (Cinema Studies), & attends University of Baltimore School of Law.
Brian's been working primarily in the digital space for years but enjoys all communications avenues.
He has built the creative departments at two agencies.
He likes skateboarding with his son. He also falls off his skateboard and amuses his son. When not amusing his son or riding bikes or playing basketball or working he writes for Beyond Madison Avenue & that's why Beyond Madison Avenue appears twice in this sentence.
Find him online here and at www.teenyagency.com.
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