In early 2014 BuzzFeed started putting together their Branded Video department which spearheaded a new wave of digital branded advertising on the web. As a lead writer and producer for many of these branded creatives, I helped to create numerous viral videos which deliciously walked the line between entertainment and advertising. One area where I excel in particularly is in interpreting the client’s needs and bringing their unique brand messaging to life — much like a good commercial might!
Here’s just a taste of the variety of work I have written and produced.
One of our biggest clients is Purina. The client wanted to show how our dogs play such a big role in our everyday lives and thus, we want the very best for them. As a dog lover myself, I wanted to capture the different relationships we all share with dogs and most importantly, the benefits of having a dog. This is an example of a heartfelt, identity driven video all about how dogs make our lives better. If you don’t want a dog after watching this video, you are probably dead inside.
Also, a deaf friend of mine, who happened to have the coolest Hearing Dog Aid also inspired me to include the well-known deaf actors Troy Kotsur and Deanne Bray-Kotsur in one of the scenes which I supervised the filming of.
As a 90s kid myself, this project was a lot of fun to produce. To promote VH1’s new 90s-themed scripted show, Hindsight, I wanted to compare how we did things in the 90s VS how we do things today. This one was a throwback to the nostalgia of that era. I also have a cameo in this one as the rollerblader. You might say, I’m too legit to quit!
I love MINI Coopers, and it was especially fun to work on this project. This video was part of a much larger collaboration with MINI to celebrate the anniversary of these iconic cars. I was brought in to assist with writing the many pitch documents and treatments which ultimately helped sell a variety of Buzzfeed/MINI co-branded and white label videos. My team conceived and produced and documented the entirety of the 2014 MINI Takes the States road trip. Naturally, my favorite video of the series is food based. Check it out below.
LIZ CLAIBORNE/ JCPENNEY.
This particular project was a challenge because the Liz Claiborne demographic was a lot older than the typical Buzzfeed audience. As a classic brand, the client wanted us to present a video that would help connect them to a younger millennial audience.
After 10+ rewrites from other writers, I was brought in as the lead writer to rework this pitch and save it from being scrapped! The client loved the idea of celebrating real women’s success stories. We focused on identity-based themes and on how women must continuously reinvent ourselves as we grow up. We highlighted the Liz Claiborne style as our hero women are celebrated with makeovers while they share their experiences.
I had fun casting; a 50-year-old track and field winning hurdler, an opera singer-turned successful novelist, a photographer/philanthropist, a mom discovering her passions again, and a Jazz singer. I had the pleasure of being inspired by these successful women myself.
Another big client, I was the lead writer on two Luvs projects and was responsible for casting real parents, vetting parent’s “hacks” and stories and coordinating lots and lots of little kids ad babies. SOOO many poop stories. I am traumatized for life. Only kidding.
This was a really fun project, and I loved working with real people – not actors to get to the real essence of parenting.
I co-wrote the script, oversaw production and co-directed this one (below).
LUVS II. I helped write the script on this one.
As a big foodie, I was most excited to consult on this project for Nestle Tollhouse. I pulled from my network of foodie friends, cooks and bloggers to cast and assist on these two projects.
NON BRANDED TASTE TEST.
I was invited to participate and taste some really weird foods in this video. Not gonna lie. It was gross.
NON BRANDED PUPPY KISSES.
I was invited to see how long I could stand puppy kisses. Not gonna lie. Also gross.
I’ll end with this mega successful Purina video that our team put together with the talented Ze Frank.
There are many more examples, but I wanted to share this hilarious example of the hypnotic power that cats have on all of us.
Creepy little cuties.
So what’s the secret to a successful video?
Puppies and kittens, babies and food.