A brilliant series offering brief glimpses into the minds and creative processes of some of the industry's most interesting or celebrated creatives. A new perspective is featured on the first Tuesday of each month at 10 AM EST.
Paul Bernabe & Chi Hao Chang Stick-a-Side
By Alixandra Rutnik on Dec 09, 2020
Paul Bernabe and Chi Hao Chang created a "mock campaign" for Burger King’s mozzarella sticks during Mentor & Creative
The COVID-19 pandemic forced everybody to rethink their life and especially their business strategies– it's been a long haul, but things are looking up for 2021. We went from an already highly digital society to a pretty-much digital-only existence this past year. The pandemic for worse or for better has forced tech in society to evolve at a more rapid rate. Just like everyone else, The One Club for Creativity has had to move everything– including all our fun in-person One Club events – online for the foreseeable future.
Over the summer we launched our first Mentor & Creative summer program over Zoom– a pandemic friendly spin-off of our big Intern & Creative networking event. It was a 6-week “computers-on” experience that connected a handful of our One Club student members and Young Ones’ winners with our corporate members. Students were assigned a client brief, a One Club open business brief, or a bespoke mentorship lesson by high-level creatives (like Nancy Vonk). The students met with their industry professional mentors once a week for two to three hours for six weeks. At the end of the program, and after hours of hard creative work and thinking, students now have a polished campaign-based project to showcase in their portfolios or new-found knowledge to take with them in life.
The Mentor & Creative summer program went so well that we hosted it again over the fall– the fall session wrapped up a few weeks ago, and there will be another session this winter available to Young Ones’ winners and One Club members only. The deadline to register for the winter session is January 22, 2021.
We interviewed a handful of students to receive their feedback on our new Mentor & Creative program.
One of the participants, Paul Bernabe was part of a group headed by MullenLowe. Paul is a Young Ones 2020 winner and he is in his second year at The City College of New York for his Master’s degree in Branding and Integrated Communications. He received his BA in English and History. “I decided to go to grad school with the idea to invest in myself. I wanted to delve into something that I find fascinating, and branding and advertising is always something I have been interested in. I’ve been working in marketing within academic institutions and I really wanted to pivot into learning about working on a campaign from start to finish,” Paul said. All his classes are online this year, which is no surprise considering the wild times we are all living in.
"I decided to go to grad school with the idea to invest in myself. I wanted to delve into something that I find fascinating, and branding and advertising is always something I have been interested in."
Paul was paired with Chi Hao Chang who recently completed his BFA in design at The School of Visual Arts and they worked closely with their two mentors from MullenLowe Boston: Tanya Wasyluk and Albert Breitwieser. Their client was Burger King and their brief was Burger King’s mozzarella sticks. (Note: this was a purely academic based project to build creativity and industry knowledge.)
“My partner Chi Hao was always game, always ready, and always gave his 110%. I am thankful that our mentors, Tanya and Albert were encouraging, had an open ear, and were unwavering in their support,” Paul said.
Paul discussed some advantages and disadvantages to working remotely through Zoom. When asked about Zoom he laughed and said, “Earlier this year Zoom suddenly became this big part of everyone’s lives.” The key advantages of an online program were being able to connect with anyone at any time, anywhere via Zoom. The disadvantages being that lack of human face-to-face interaction that everyone needs and craves. Even over Zoom Paul had a very positive experience– “Chi Hao is a super talented guy and I think we had a really great working relationship throughout,” he said.
After talking to Paul it became obvious that this was a great opportunity for students to learn, build their portfolios, and bond over teamwork. “I handled the copy and Chi Hao handled the art direction and design. Tanya advised me on my copy while Albert worked with Chi Hao on the design,” Paul said.
Paul and Chi Hao named their final project for Burger King’s mozzarella sticks “Stick-a-side.” In the end, their campaign became an interactive experience with stickers and posters where Burger King “brand ambassadors would be near the posters so passersby can stick their side as a fun way to “settle” regional rivalries.” Imagine two large posters that each represent a side of a rivalry, for example sports teams. When approaching these posters fans are given little stickers that resemble mozzerella sticks, and when they peel off the sticker to "stick their side" the sticker backing has a fun slogan and it becomes a coupon for free Burger King mozerella sticks. Paul continued to describe the beginning stages of “stick-a-side:” “The idea stemmed from the simple idea that mozzarella sticks, when laid out, could be used as tally marks. We focused on using these sticks to voice an opinion, stick-a-side, and come to something we can all agree on: free mozzarella sticks.”
“Brand ambassadors would be near the posters so passersby can stick their side as a fun way to “settle” regional rivalries.”
To all the students who are considering applying for the spring session or who joined us for the fall program, Paul says to “Have fun with it and come into it with an open mind. The mentors I had have been doing great work for a while, and I really learned a lot from them. Do your best to be open to how everyone you’re working with is connecting and communicating. It was really a great intensive experience in growth and advertising.”
It was really a great intensive experience in growth and advertising.”
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