By Ben Lee and Paola Schifino, Co-founders and Principals
Congratulations to us! 🙌
This year we’re proud to announce we’re celebrating 30 years as an agency. On Aug. 19, 1993, Paola Schifino and Ben Lee took the plunge into starting their own shop, and it’s been the ride of a lifetime ever since.
We want to begin our celebration by giving a heartfelt thank-you to all our clients, employees, business partners, and professional peers who have enabled us to prosper for three decades. Our celebration will be taking place throughout the year with some special events we’ll be hosting later as well as some special contests and giveaways we’ll be holding to commemorate our agency’s biggest milestone yet. Stay tuned to our social media for more on that soon!
In the meantime, Paola and Ben have taken a moment to reflect on and share some of our biggest highlights and insights from the past 30 years. They touch on everything from who our first client was to what we think the biggest challenge is for agency owners today to when our proudest moment at Schifino Lee has been.
We hope you enjoy their reminiscences and stay posted for some special 30th anniversary events coming later this year!
Paola and Ben’s Reflections on 30 Years
1. Last job you held before launching Schifino Lee?
Paola: Marketing Manager at HSB Reliability Technology, a Hartford Steam Boiler technology company.
Ben: Marketing Director at Kimmins.
2. First client?
Our previous employers, HSB Reliability Technology and Kimmins – and both remain active clients to this day. They’ve supported our entrepreneurship wholeheartedly!
3. Biggest change you’ve seen in advertising?
The shift from mass targeting (through broadcast channels) to microtargeting (through digital media). And from having only local clients to being national and global in scope.
4. Marketing career you would have pursued if you hadn’t started an agency?
Paola: Fashion merchandiser.
Ben: Brand marketer or maybe a florist.
5. Biggest challenge that ad agency owners face today?
Matching the right talent to projects that require specific and specialized skill sets.
6. Newest technology or media channel that you’re the most excited about?
AI and the role it will play in everything from audience targeting to creative execution.
7. Advice you’d give to marketing professionals thinking about launching their own agency?
Love what you do; do what you love. Nothing sells better than authenticity.
8. Proudest moment at Schifino Lee?
Tough question because there are so many wonderful moments. In the 1990s, it was working with the New York Yankees on the opening of George M. Steinbrenner Field. In the early 2000s,it was a multilingual global advertising campaign for AT&T. Today, it’s doing the work due tomorrow.