When Jeff Benjamin, Partner and Executive Creative Director at Barton F. Graf, joined us backstage at Advertising Week in New York, he brought what he described as a “bag of sonic surprises.”
There was a lot of cool stuff in that bag — among other things, a horn, a shaker, and something that looks like a giant firecracker that makes thunder sounds. But maybe most interestingly, the bag included a page from the brand guidelines of one of his key clients, detailing what that brand should sound like — from qualities like honesty to the array of rock bands that reflect its bluesy, rootsy style.
So as it turns out, Jeff’s physical bag of sonic surprises was only a starting point for much bigger, more valuable sonic surprises — keen insights into the power of audio that he and his team have gleaned and leveraged in their range of work with some of the biggest brands out there.
“I call upon sound when I want consumers to feel something,” he states, making the priority for audio clear. How is sound manifested in his brand projects? Holistically, In everything from voice, to music, to functional sound: “What we’re talking about here is sort of a sonic soul.”
Enjoy this trip through the career-to-date of a true creative master — from his accidental entry via a job in his college auditorium, where he started writing ads because no one else was around to do it, to leading Barton F. Graf today.
Don’t miss any of his amazing stories — about discovering the voice of the Kraft brand in a homeless man, locking horns with another client when it came time to choose music and more. A few minutes in and it’s crystal clear why Jeff is undoubtedly in the right line of work.
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