Jayhawk connection leads alumni to Budapest

Posted on Aug 22, 2016 in Alumni News and News

Scott Collin and Jeff Goldfarb in Budapest | photo courtesy of Scott Collin
Scott Collin (left) and Jeff Goldfarb (right)

Scott Collin and Jeff Goldfarb both attended the KU School of Journalism, graduated together in 1994, and have crossed paths plenty of times in their professional careers—first at a WPP Advertising Agency in the late 1990s.

Last year, the two Jayhawks worked together again, this time with Jeff, j’94, as one of Scott’s clients. Jeff is the director of cooperative marketing for ASI, the for-profit side of AARP, while Scott is the chief creative officer for Influent50, a full-service advertising agency that focuses on people 50 and older.

The photo above was taken in May in Budapest, Hungary, where the pair was on a television shoot. “We shot the commercials in Budapest because of the incredible efficiencies and savings we were able to realize there,” explained Scott. “Those savings allowed us to work with The Mill, one of the top and most respected CG and Virtual Reality production shops in the world. Ten days in Budapest with an old friend and fellow Jayhawk just firmed up why I got into this business.”

Scott, j’94, shared more insights about his time on campus, advice for students and alumni— and explained the photo above.

So, what about the mug shots?

The “mug shots” were for fun. We had brunch one morning in Budapest at this fantastic little restaurant. That whole scene was just there. Just a wall with words and graphics on it with two cut-out frames. Behind the frames was a wall of flowers. So I thought it would have been a total missed opportunity if we didn’t take our photos there.

Tell us about your experience at KU.

It was fantastic. On every level. What I love about it is that it wasn’t easy. In fact, it seemed at every turn I was up against obstacles I didn’t think I could navigate. But I did. Both with my classmates and, when things seemed insurmountable, my professors. There was a day when I was presenting what I thought was the best idea I’d ever had to a class and professor Bengston tore me to pieces. I was devastated. Yet, after class he told me it was his favorite idea…and he wanted to teach me how to keep a good idea alive. Best lesson I was taught the entire time I was at KU. My career since then has been all about making good ideas great…and keeping great ideas alive.

People are afraid of anything that’s new or difference. So…keeping new ideas alive is far from easy.

What advice do you have for current students or recent graduates?

Be curious. Never stop asking why. When things seem to stagnate or you don’t think new ideas are coming, throw something completely inane or bizarre into the mix. Take walks. Hydrate. Offer to help other people with things that don’t necessarily connect to what you do.

Be nice. Be kind. Be astute. But the most important thing of all is to outwork those around you. Especially when it comes to creative, those who work the hardest are rewarded the most. If you want your idea to live, will it to. Give it life. Give it the support it needs. And never give up. The minute you do, someone else will sweep in and take over.

But at the end of the day, be genuine. A happy client means a happy agency. Celebrate your friends successes. Applaud winning efforts. Do this, you will be healthy and go far.

At the end of the day…

Advertising affords you many amazing opportunities. But at the end of the day, advertising is a job like any other. Lawyers. Garbagemen. Politicians. We all love to think we do the most interesting thing in the world.

We don’t. We do what we do. Ideally, we do it really well.

The most interesting people in the world are the ones with the best stories. So it’s in your best interest to take good notes and learn to own the stage.

Here’s one more photo from Scott, taken at the Statue Park outside of Budapest. He explained that this is where the Hungarians took all the old Russian statues after they took back their own independence. Jeff and Scott are pictured along with Scott’s art director partner, Rebecca Mabie, and their chaperone, Zília Tóth. Scott welcomes messages from alumni—you can reach him at scollin@influent50.com.

Scott Collin and Jeff Goldfarb in Budapest | photo courtesy of Scott Collin
Pictured left to right: Zília Tóth, Rebecca Mabie, Scott Collin, Jeff Goldfarb

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