PRSNL Branding

[Company]

PRSNL Branding is the first creative digital agency for emerging professionals' online identities. Our stories are only as good as they're presented because it's not just what we say, but how we say it. Personal branding has never been more vital and influential than it is today, as opportunities are lost and gained based upon what people discover about you online. We provide materials and consultancy to creatively, professionally and strategically position yourself across the social web.

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On Advertising

[Medium Publication]

On Advertising is Medium's leading Publication in advertising, marketing and branding. We’re an open community of CEO’s, Designers, Strategists, Developers, and Students alike, skeptically examining the new ways communication is impacting business today. Our mission is to thoughtfully question the status-quo within the fields and we pride ourselves on remaining an open publication, with no allegiance or bias toward any explicit agenda, brand or company. We welcome all writers and pieces no matter their perspective, profession, experience and status.

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Commuting Candy

[Photo-Essay]

“If our apps take care of us, we are not focused on what they take from us.” Commuting Candy is a photo-essay inspired by the work and words of Sherry Turkle, an MIT Professor and scholar studying the ways digital technology is affecting face-to-face communication.

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Online Sharing & Self-Presentation

[Scientific Study]

With the growth of size and functionality of social networking sites and the platforms’ linchpin of controlling images of a constructed self, the motivation of self-presentation may operate as a critical component in the process of achieving revered viral status. In this experimental cyberpsychological study, I aim to underline the inherent effect of self-presentational behavior on social platforms, concentrating on electronic-word-of-mouth in relation to the success of online video advertisements.

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We're Looking at Cyberbullying the Wrong Way

[Op-Ed; TechCrunch]

Twitter did not give birth to cyberbullying, nor will they abolish it. Online abuse is omnipresent and not exclusive to one platform over another. It’s a behavior that starts with a mentality, not a platform. Attacking Twitter for its policing or lack thereof does not attack the root of the problem. Even if Twitter ceased to exist tomorrow, online harassment will not expire.

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The History & Future of Storytelling

[Op-Ed; Virgin]

When we look back to our literal caveman days of storytelling, we can describe them as intrinsically passive experiences. There was the teller, and there was the listener. The listener listened, and that was all. This relationship held true even in more modern times despite the births of thrilling technologies. Like fires, when audiences eventually gathered around radios and congregated within theatres, here too, there was a teller (the broadcaster or the screen) and the listener. The listener did just one thing: listen. However, when we look back now, we can witness a change in dynamics that have taken place over the last few decades. Slowly but surely, the listener has been reaching towards a state where they are becoming more and more like a teller. The audience is gaining unprecedented control, which we must consider.

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Should We Be More Worried About the Future of Tech?

 [Op-Ed; Virgin]

As technology advances exponentially, we often hear of the successes they prohibit, but rarely the downfalls they provoke. Studying how technology influences mind, behaviour, culture and business, I find inquisitive discussions around the unfavourable consequences of our feats overlooked and painfully limited.

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The Problem With Fluid Branding

[Op-Ed; Virgin]

Newness is an inherently tempting thing. Providing modern experiences, it's an absolute truth that emerging technologies have always captivated brands and individuals alike through advertising. As people flock and adopt the fresh, it's a ritualistic proclivity for brands to follow suit in an attempt to advertise in contemporary means. Brands have been aware of this phenomenon for as long as advertising has existed, in the hopes of distinguishing themselves from the competition. Unfortunately, with today's landscape and tomorrow's forecast, brands, aware of it or not, are at an impasse where many will not survive. 

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Expression Through Our Phones

[Op-Ed; The Download by Medium]

What happens when the power of the free market allows phones like the iPhone and Galaxy to consume majority stake of the mobile device landscape? Has our culture spoken, unanimously agreeing that we’re satisfied with ubiquity at the cost of expression Apple recently celebrated its 1,000,000,000 iPhone, all one billion devices nearly indistinguishable when it comes to function and appearance. Cultures such as the Japanese have not gone this far down the path of universality, still providing consumers with exhaustive choice for their mobile device. However, if substantial variety is not our forte in the US, it has been quite the journey and there is much to question here.

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The Throne of Entertainment

[Satirical Non-Fiction]

The viral video, unforgettable meme and worldwide sensation, Sittin on Tha Toilet, has exceeded 80 million views since its worldwide premiere in 2009. Recently celebrating its five-year anniversary, Sittin on Tha Toilet has become a cultural phenomenon surpassing its cult status in early 2010. After over half a decade, it is time to return to the innovative and unorthodox film so we can commemorate the fundamentals of creative storytelling, revel in its cinematic value and ultimately examine how the work has held up over time.

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Missed Connections

[Nonfiction]

Samantha is confronted with a mass exodus of students every day, which makes me question if she has everyone's name and order down. I find out she doesn't. With that being said, I don't bother asking "Why me?” Rather, I question how is it that this stranger who physically keeps me alive knows me so well, and I don’t know a single thing about her?  I thought reaching out and learning the stark, intimate truth about someone in person would have been such a refresher from the norm of self-manipulated online profiles at college nowadays.

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Empty

[Short Film]

Toy Story asked, "What do your toys do when you're not around?"

Doused in melancholy and lit with a morbid reality, Empty reveals what your water bottle is up to when you're not around.

Brainstormed in nearly an hour, shot that very a day and edited the next, Empty was a $0 exercise in improvisation and resourcefulness.

Inspired by Plastic Bag, our goal was to humanize and stain an inanimate object.

Screenings & Awards:

• OFFICIAL SELECTION / F&M FILM SHOWCASE / SEPT '15


US

[Short Film]

US is a found footage film, edited together from clips existing in the depths of YouTube. As the viewers embarks on a slow burn of seemingly self-consumed human behavior, amusement can boil to frustration.

As one figuratively points, the piece vindictively turns on itself. How noticeable are the time-stamps to you, which are all modern US catastrophes from Columbine to 9/11?

Who's struggling here, the on-screen subjects, victims or viewer?

Is this shallow self-absorption, or purposeful distraction?

Screenings & Awards:

• BEST MIXED-MEDIA PIECE / F&M ART SHOW / APRIL '14
• EXHIBITED PIECE / PHILLIPS MUSEUM OF ART / APRIL '14


Making "Healthy" "Cool" for Snap Kitchens' Customers

[Branding Strategy Campaign]

As a one-stop healthy meal shop, Snap Kitchen was ready to grow. However, with "time" as the number one barrier to entry for eating healthy, Snap Kitchen needed to reframe the process of healthy and conscious consumption.

With Snap looking up to the "Digital Disruptors" including Warby Parker, Uber and Netflix, it was determined it was "time" these companies were actually disrupting. So if Snap wanted to enter the upper eshelon of Disruptors, they had to position themselves as the solution to healthy convenience. They needed to disrupt time.

However, with quite literally any and everyone who wanted to eat healthy as a potential customer, we had to present a versatile language, appealing to the masses. Ultimately, we had produced a customizable tagline, "Less _____, More _____" allowing leaders various specific social networks to enter and spread their relatable message.


A Shocking Twitter Campaign for HBO's The Night Of

[Creative Social Campaign]

In 2016, HBO premiered the first season of The Night Of, a gritty crime and law themed mini-series. During the live airing of Part 6, I created a Twitter handle for the main character, Naz. Within the first 24 hours, I replied to over a hundred Tweets which were using the hashtag #TheNightOf or the quote, “The Night Of", and within a week, Naz received mentions from over 13 countries and 6/7 continents. As far as engagements went, every 1/4 Tweets I sent to a fan received a Like or Retweet, and impressively, every 1/5 Tweets I sent was responded to by the original Tweeter.

Within just two weeks, Naz garnered over 88,000 impressions, 900 followers and 10,000 profile visits. When a viewer goes out of their way to share their thoughts on a show or character, they are taking the time to further engage with content.

When all is said and done, and we comprehend the concept that grown-adults are brining fictional characters to life outside the captivity of the TV screen and into online social forum, something is to be said about that existing, untapped energy and passion. These are missed opportunities to strengthen viewer and consumer relationships. These are easy wins. Fans are seeking these enhanced digital interactions. Why not provide them?


From Novelty To Utility, A Growth Strategy For Cyber Dust

[Creative Social Campaign]

With the countless number of competing mobile messaging apps on the market, Cyber Dust needed to differentiate itself without inhibiting growth. At the time, there was a white space in 1-1 brand participation and customer service, which would take the app from novelty to utility. This was prior to Facebook launching Business on Messenger.

While communicating with Dez Bryant or Kevin Jonas on Cyber Dust was entertaining, the app was perceived more as a novelty than a productive or practical platform. The proposed growth strategy evolved the platform as a resource, utility and service, pitching the invitation for brands to create profiles, providing their business a personal, expressive voice that no other platform currently provided.

The strategy also focused on more creative opportunities for brand mascots and entertainment characters to chat with fans. Imagine receiving baking tips from the Pillsbury Doughboy or exclusive trailers from Captain America? These partnerships would allow brands to modernize themselves, allowing followers to embrace a new, personalized form of 1-1 branded communication. No doubt, this strategy was ahead of its time, as is took more than two years for direct customer service and chatbots to reach limelight.


Making Yo No Laughing Matter With Local Partnerships

[Creative Social Campaign]

After wild, early success, Yo had to grow up and embrace a profitable future with partnerships and valuable functionality. After signing with renowned publishers including WIRED, Ad Age, Mashable, BuzzFeed, USA Today and TechCrunch, Yo needed to create smaller, more local partnerships, reaching more intimate audiences.

In a country-wide initiative to develop small, local-business partnerships, a handful of local companies and organizations in Lancaster, PA agreed to hop aboard. With the ability to effortlessly send push notifications and communicate directly with followers, local-businesses now had the ability to share news and deals directly with their closest customers, all without have to cough up the ad spend.

The partnerships with local, identifiable businesses, accelerated a new wave of downloads in the city and surrounding college campuses, further fostering relationships between businesses, customers and Yo. By leveraging the open platform, food trucks could share their current locations, juice shops could share their new deals, newspapers could share their breaking stories, and organizations could share their meeting times. All partners now knew their followers were getting the message.



Sisyphus_4ø4

[Short Film]

As an ambient and modern interpretation of the Greek myth Sisyphus, the viewer is invited to engage in a "choose your own adventure" means of reasoning. Asking more questions than answering, we yearned to construct a story with room for personal exposition and unique interpretation, all while constructing a semi-grounded, contemporary genre piece. We aimed to illustrate themes of consequence, inevitability and freedom.

Screenings & Awards:

• PREMIERE AND Q&A / ZOETROPOLIS ART HOUSE / JAN '14
• OFFICIAL SELECTION / F&M FILM SHOWCASE / SEPT '14
• OFFICIAL SELECTION / SEFF: BINGHAMTON / DEC '14
• SCREENING AND Q&A / ART & MISSION THEATER / DEC '14
• FEATURE / UNDERGRAD FILM ONLINE / FEB '15
• OFFICIAL SELECTION / F&M SENIOR SHOWCASE / APR '15
• HEADLINER / F&M SENIOR SHOWCASE / APR '15


Once Upon A Now

[Short Film]

Shot using 16mm hand-processed and spliced film, a Bolex camera and distorted with various chemicals, this piece examines the relationship between the past, nostalgia, expectations and the present.

We sought to explore the evolution, growth and adaptation of memories as well as the deterioration and manipulation of such recollections.

We attempted to morph and alter presumptions and one's ability to recall the truth while playing with contemporary norms.

Screenings & Awards:

• OFFICIAL SELECTION / F&M FILM SHOWCASE / SEPT '14
• FEATURE / UNDERGRAD FILM ONLINE / FEB '15
• OFFICIAL SELECTION / F&M SENIOR SHOWCASE / APR '15


Positioning Amazon Student Prime as a No Brainer

[Branding Strategy Campaign]

Despite Amazon being top of mind for online shopping and textbooks with college students, Amazon Student Prime wanted to increase awareness of its program for the upcoming school year.

When looking into college student behaviors, they weren't just busy and technologically competent, but rather stressed and savvy. They needed help balancing. Our solution was to position Student Prime as the stress-busting, answer needed in every student's life. Amazon will allow students to live more college.

With promotions, packages and sweepstakes, ultimately always funding student's free time, Amazon was going to help students balance their books and shopping so they could finally have more time to do what they pleased during "the best four years of their lives."


Turning "Houses" Into "Homes" With Google OnHub

[Creative Social Campaign]

How do you get people to care about a product, when they don't even know what it does? Google's task was educating consumers while simultaneously selling their new smart router, OnHub. As family households were the most likely to suffer from poor Wi-Fi and owned the most connected devices, the modern digital family was chosen as the target. The strategy was to have Google partner with Zillow and Airbnb, providing families with an OnHub and turning their house into a home.

In their move or on their stay, families would experience better Wi-Fi than ever before, first-hand. With a big move or while traveling, both occasions produce initial discomfort for families. Easing the tribulations with OnHub would create a lasting experience and seamless opportunities for sharing as both occasions are naturally social.

An interactive smart house was also discussed to occupy tech events, as it would provide savvy consumers the opportunity to also experience the product first hand. Although the pitch was not initiated, since presenting, CNET built a smart house of the future. Additionally, Zillow has partnered with Google, and Airbnb has partnered with NRG Home Solar, Virgin America, Tesla and AMEX, validating the success of such partnerships


#HowDoYouCarlsberg, A Social Concept KFC Ate Up

[Creative Social Campaign]

In order to cut through repetitive, monotonous, branded content online, a user generated content campaign was pitched to Carlsberg in Denmark. Asking #HowDoYouCarlsberg?, the campaign would allow the brand's passionate fans to become the face of the company, giving power back to the people.

At the time, Carlsberg's social presence was lifeless and its responses were infrequent, contradicting the company's mission to be a brand that put consumers "at the heart of every decision it makes." In order to kick-off a more responsive social strategy, Carlsberg was to promote an Instagram-centric UGC campaign, rewarding participation.

Evolving Carlsberg's current line,  "That Calls for a Carlsberg", into an actionable question and turning "Carlsberg" into a verb, we invited the beer's proud fans to become the fresh, social faces of the company. Strict advertising regulations were acknowledge and Carlsberg ultimately carried out a similar campaign similarly inviting social participation on Instagram and rewarding fans. Months later, it was discovered that KFC was on the same page and launched their own #HowDoYouKFC campaign.