The Blog and Pony Show

Archive for June, 2011

Schifino Lee - 3:48 pm June 29, 2011

Chief Creative Officer Appointed at Schifino Lee

“Creativity Is a Fancy Word for the Work We Have to Do By Friday.” – David Ogilvy

When the Chief Marketing Officer of American Express asked his marketing firms to create something that would inspire people to choose his brand over Mastercard or Visa, the Creative Director and his team had a non-traditional solution: partner with Robert DeNiro and launch The American Express Tribeca Film Festival.

When Enterprise Rent-A-Car challenged its marketing firm to communicate how a rental car company could make customers feel so important that they would choose an upstart over the more established Hertz and Avis, the same Creative Director had a solution: the “Pick Enterprise, We’ll Pick You Up” campaign that helped grow the brand to #1 and over $10 billion in revenue.

When Bacardi wanted to launch the first line of flavored rums while still building its flagship brand, that same Creative Director, now with McCann-Erickson, developed the “Bacardi By Night” campaign and came up with “Shake Up Your Night” for Bacardi Limon, O, CoCo, and Razz.

And when the Florida State Fair wanted to get younger people excited about coming to the Fair, that Creative Director launched a campaign that used YouTube and Facebook as platforms for a contest to create real-life super heroes based on Fair attractions and food. This campaign raised Web site visits and attendance at the Fair by 20% while lowering the average age of Fair goers.

What do all of these success stories have in common?

None of them started life as a “TV idea” or a “Web idea.” They all started as a solution to a client’s business challenge. They all began as an idea that would engage and entertain, no matter whether people experienced them as an event (Tribeca Film Festival), 15 or 30 second mini-movie (a.k.a. Enterprise or Bacardi TV commercial), or social media interaction (Florida State Fair).

And they all had the same Creative Director: Evan Brownstein.

Evan had the privilege to work with great people at American Express, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Bacardi, Nestlé, and Claritin. At Columbia University Film School he learned how to tell stories from Martin Scorsese, Paul Schrader, and Terry Southern who taught him that when you work with great people, you can do great things.

Working with great people is what drew Evan to Schifino Lee.

Clients universally say that Schifino Lee genuinely listens to them and learns about their businesses. Then that learning is translated into creative work that is fresh and compelling—in both digital and traditional media. All with the goal of growing clients’ businesses.

Schifino Lee is proud to announce the appointment of Evan Brownstein as Chief Creative Officer. We welcome you to put his creativity to work for your business. Call us at 813 258 5858. Evan’s extension is 240. His email is You can connect with Schifino Lee on our Facebook page or via Linkedin. Let’s start a conversation and see where it grows…

Schifino Lee - 7:57 pm June 17, 2011

Schifino Lee develops new advertising, website and SEM for Williams Schifino Mangione & Steady

Schifino Lee recently launched the website for Williams Schifino Mangione & Steady Law Firm. The new website for Williams Schifino provides an online legal services resource to current and potential clients along with direct access to Williams Schifino attorneys as they relate to these services. The Schifino Lee team sought to demonstrate the firm’s excellent reputation and abilities while creating an intuitive online experience that remains true to the firm’s client-centric approach to making the legal process more manageable. The new site is designed entirely with clients and potential clients in mind. Visitors can access in-depth information about each practice area and the attorneys in them. Since its launch the site has attracted considerable traffic and positive feedback from clients and industry leaders.

Schifino Lee also provided search engine optimization services in order to drive quality traffic to the site, and developed a robust content management system that makes updating the Williams Schifino website a breeze.

In order to support the new look expressed on the website, Schifino Lee refreshed the Williams Schifino brand message through new print advertisements. The new print advertisements are intended to position Williams Schifino as the premier corporate law firm in Tampa Bay. The Schifino Lee team sought to target business professionals in the Tampa Bay area in need of corporate legal services, by relating the confidence, training and skill needed to achieve goals in daunting activities such as skydiving and mountain climbing to the confidence, experience and skill needed in the courtroom. The new print advertisements illustrate that Williams Schifino is the aggressive, experienced and results driven law firm for a business to turn to when faced with seemingly insurmountable situations.

About Williams Schifino:
Williams Schifino is dedicated to providing expert legal advice in a timely and cost-effective manner. Our goal is to build long-term and mutually beneficial relationships with our clients. We are here to work in their best interests, to advise and represent them, and most importantly, to bring them optimal results. For more information, please visit

For more information visit our website at or please contact Ben Lee or Paola Schifino at 813-258-5858, exts. 224 and 223, respectively, or at and

Schifino Lee - 1:43 pm June 7, 2011

My long, hot summer

Summer intern Rachel Gregory provides this entry about her impressions of learning the craft of copywriting at Schifino Lee.

The long white marble slab of a desk stretches out before me as I sit at my computer. I’m on reception desk duty as I attempt to write one of my first assignments. It’s my second day as a copywriting intern, and I now know more about varicose veins than I ever thought I would need to.

In school, you get these fantasies about what advertising is like all the time. You think every client is going to be “Target” and have a huge budget to make the most creative work ever. Of course that’s not always true. In the real world, clients have brand guidelines, specific objective, and budget restrictions.

Every project in school is for your favorite product or a big-time client. There are no budget limits, and no creative restrictions. In the advertising fantasy land of school, the real world isn’t taught, and common clients aren’t assigned. Insurance companies? Never. Industrial machinery? What’s that? Anti-itch cream? Forget it. Assignments that will teach us to be creative in confined circumstances and small spaces are non-existent.

So, on my first day when I was presented with the task of editing web copy all about medical treatments, and write headlines for them, my first thought was, what did I do to deserve this? I then reminded myself of how much I still have to learn about writing. While to some that may seem like a disappointment, I am excited to be pushed in areas that I have not yet been.

At Schifino Lee I am looking forward to stretching my creative abilities in ways school has not. I want to learn how to write better and more creatively when dealing with any client. I expect to get a lot of critique that will help me improve the vocation I already enjoy. I think the mix of clients at Schifino Lee is going to give me a well-rounded experience that will enhance my education.

So whether I’m writing headlines for veins or sunglasses, I’m ready to arrange words into phrases that are meaningful and relevant for every client I’m assigned.

Schifino Lee - 5:46 pm June 1, 2011

why american villages are safe from typhoons.

Today is June First. A date significant in 3 ways:

  1. The baseball season is statistically over
  2. Hurricane season begins
  3. It is OFFICIALLY way too late to play hockey even though the Bruins face off against the Canucks tonight for Lord Stanley’s Cup.

But back to #2.

Everywhere else in the tropic and subtropical world this time of year is called The Rainy Season. Hurricanes are not guaranteed, but you can be sure there will be a deluge with rolling thunder and eye-splitting shafts of lightening (as there is at this very moment) most afternoons.

So why Hurricane Season? I suspect because Rainy Season sounds too quaint and colonial. Rainy Season is what happens in other places, little places, places where they make Nikes rather than wear them. The USA is biggest, baddest, most exceptional country ever, therefore we do not have showers, rain storms, squalls or even monsoons (which are actually winds that bring or prevent rain on a semi-annual cycle). No, our summer weather is characterized by the mightiest of all meteorological phenomena, the hurricane. Hawaii and California also get hurricanes, although these Pacific-bred storms are properly typhoons. Typhoons can only happen in other places where something that sounds like a baby-talk could be menacing.

Our preference for hurricane over rain is an affect of that national pride that prevents the US from having villages. Everywhere else there are villages. The news media always refer to villages in Afghanistan, France, Japan, Mexico. Not here. Any wide place in the road with a population of 2.5 where a news van stops is still a town.

“Coastal village inundated by typhoon!” It can’t happen here.