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Introducing Ming, New York’s brand new strategic action-based advertising agency

Art direc­tors, account man­agers and oth­ers hold­ing media jobs in online adver­tis­ing agen­cies might not be famil­iar with the con­cept of a “strate­gic, action-based cre­ative com­pa­ny oper­at­ing in the ‘new to next’ space, but they’re about to find out with the open­ing of brand new agency in New York that proud­ly adopts this phrase as its self-definition.

New agency, new ideas

Ming (full name “Ming Util­i­ty and Enter­tain­ment Group”) has just opened its doors on Peck Slip in down­town New York, thanks to the col­lab­o­ra­tive efforts of sea­soned Adland mavens Linus Karls­son (erst­while CCO of Glob­al brands at McCann-Erick­son), Bri­an Di Loren­zo (McCann’s Chief pro­duc­tion Offi­cer) and Tara DeVeaux (for­mer­ly Exec­u­tive VP/Account Man­ag­er at BBDO). The trio will serve as Ming’s Chief Cre­ative Offi­cer, CEO and Pres­i­dent, respectively.

The com­pa­ny was fif­teen years in the mak­ing, Mr Karls­son recent­ly told AdAge mag­a­zine. Back then, he and Mr DiLoren­zo were work­ing in Min­neapo­lis for Fal­lon and found them­selves talk­ing about start­ing a new com­pa­ny over a restau­rant meal. They’d been deeply inspired by some of the cre­ative ideas pour­ing out of Fal­lon at the time, like their work on Bud­dy Lee for Lee Jeans, Brawny, Timex and BMW Films. As Mr Karls­son puts it:

“It feels like once in a while, an agency touch­es upon work like that, but we want to make that our core. If you look at work that has been applaud­ed in the last few years, the most amaz­ing piece of con­tent was­n’t done out of an agency — it was done by CAA and Chipo­tle. Or Red Bull. That’s telling us we have to do some­thing dif­fer­ent­ly. I don’t know what we’re wait­ing for. I’m tired of waiting.”

Col­lab­o­ra­tive spirit

The new agency will remain inde­pen­dent, although it will part­ner with McCann World­group on sev­er­al projects (access­ing its con­sid­er­able resources in the process). But art direc­tors and account man­agers who’d like to be part of the action will have oppor­tu­ni­ties to do so. The agency plans to col­lab­o­rate on brand ideas with oth­er agen­cies, too.

And as for that enig­mat­ic self-def­i­n­i­tion? All Mr Karls­son would say is this:

“You want it to define itself. By defin­ing it too ear­ly you pigeon­hole your­self. It’s most impor­tant to talk about the oppor­tu­ni­ties. We can’t do every­thing, but we can do anything.”

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