"Ads Don't Exist Anymore": Jason Falls talks to CEO Steven Grasse
That was the rhetorical answer Steven Grasse
gave in my recent interview with him for ThisMoment
in Content Marketing
, a video series I'm doing for ThisMoment
went on to say equally as revealing things, adding, "I mean nobody looks at advertising ... no one looks at outdoor, no one looks at print, no one looks at any of this stuff.
At the same time, no one looks at your online content, either.
Unless it's created as true entertainment, I think it's all invisible."
Getting a chance to talk to Grasse
about advertising is like getting a chance to talk to Eddie Van Halen about playing guitar.
is disruptive, which is a point of pride for me in my own work.
That which gets attention is that which people remember, respect and keeps clients coming back.
got so good at it his
agency, Gyro Worldwide, became Quaker City Merchantile
where their focus is marketing the brands they build, not that others bring to them. (Though they do take on the outside client from time to time.)
created most of the ads for the R.J. Reynold's Tobacco Company
in the 1990s.
wasn't just an ad guy ... he
was one of those ad guys.
Certainly, this isn't the first time he
has called out the ad industry.
seems to have a healthy disdain for anything frivolous.
But it's the laser crispness of his
criticism that is so compelling.
Former advertising executive Steven Grasse founded Quaker City Merchantile and is the man behind Hendrick's Gin.
simply grew tired of selling other people's products and sat out to create his
Quaker City lists Sailor Jerry Rum, Spodee Wine
and Art in the Age craft spirits.
builds brand experiences, not just brands.
There are no outside creative agencies involved.
It's as if he
has a creative concept, then builds a product to server as a conduit for that content.
assured me in our recent chat for ThisMoment
in Content Marketing(embedded below) that wasn't the case.
said each brand's "environment" for lack of a better term was an organic creation he
stumbled upon while getting to know the product, its origins, etc.