Scott Prindle, Hatch Awards 2009 Judge, Featured in AdWeek

17 Feb 2010 3:54 PM | Deleted user
AdWeek: The New Tech Heads
Digital technologists share their expertise, creativity

What's the best way to marry content and code? For general agencies that question is being answered by digital technologists, an increasingly critical interdisciplinary position that helps shops create compelling digital experiences for clients. These experts, who come from disciplines including programming, strategy and production, have the digital agility necessary for today's fast-paced times. "We're in a period of transition where more and more people are discovering the need for this role," says Chick Foxgrover, CIO at the 4A's and principal at Web content strategy firm Foxpath IND in New York. "It's about taking a more holistic view of what it means to create for media." Here, a look at four senior agency talents who are redefining creativity in the digital age.

Scott Prindle > Executive creative technology director > Crispin Porter + Bogusky

"Technology fuels great ideas," says Rob Reilly, co-ecd at Crispin Porter + Bogusky. "It's critical for agencies like us." The MDC Partners agency has been at the forefront of digital creativity ever since "Subservient Chicken" put on its garters for Burger King in 2005. Back then, the agency was just beginning to build its in-house digital resources and, after winning the Volkswagen account late that year, it turned to Scott Prindle, a technical director at R/GA, to help oversee its digital future. The economics grad from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, who received his early Web training at the U.S. Department of Commerce, says, "I liked bringing digital and technology capabilities into what was then more of a traditional creative environment. Alex [Bogusky] and I agreed that technology is a creative discipline." The agency is now armed with 50 technologists who are an integral part of the creative process, says Prindle, 39, who joined R/GA as a programmer in 1996. There, Prindle ran the technology side of the Nike and Nokia accounts. During his CP+B tenure, he's seen the emphasis on talent shift from the visual -- e.g., Flash designers needed to produce microsites and banner ads -- to programming. "Someone ... who has a solid grounding in IT, is comfortable working across a number of technologies and is a good problem solver is the ideal candidate now," he says. Reilly notes that the tech capabilities allow for greater creative experimentation and allows them to comp ideas in real time, an instrumental tool in selling ideas such as the recent Facebook facial-profiler app for Coke Zero or the mobile app for BK that gives users entry into the King's cell phone. "Having Scott here," he says, "allows us to control our destiny."

-Eleftheria Parpis


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