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5 Minutes with… Jason Kreher

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Jason was tempted to join Accenture Song as its CCO, brand in North America when he “stumbled upon David Droga and Neil Heymann, a promising young team who has been getting a lot of regional buzz lately” - he speaks to LBB’s Addison Capper about the move and creating Coinbase’s opinion-splitting Super Bowl ad

5 Minutes with… Jason Kreher

Jason Kreher's first work after joining Accenture Song as its chief creative officer, brand in North America was the most talked about Super Bowl spot of 2022. Coinbase's DVD screensaver inspired QR code spot led 20 million people to the brand's website and garnered more than 14 billion earned media impressions, while its low production values vehemently split opinions among regular folk and fully fledged ad nerds. 

Prior to joining Accenture Song, Jason spent 14 years at Wieden+Kennedy Portland, creating work with clients such as KFC, Old Spice, Meow Wolf, Target, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and Atlantic Records. In his new role, he will partner with Alex Woods, brand lead, communications for North America, and Jason Michaels, digital engagement lead, communications,  Jason will work closely with global CCO Neil Heymann and Sarah Thompson, global lead, communications, and other leaders at Accenture Song to bring his experience to clients interested in the new frontiers of branded entertainment, web3 and emerging technologies. 

LBB's Addison Capper caught up with him for a chat.



LBB> Congrats on the appointment - what was it about the opportunity at Accenture Song that was too good to pass up? 



Jason> I’m always on the lookout for exciting new candidates. A few months ago, I stumbled upon David Droga and Neil Heymann, a promising young team who has been getting a lot of regional buzz lately. It’s so fun to see their faces light up when they talk about the latest tech gizmos, so I figured I’d give them a shot.  



LBB> As you’ve just alluded to, it's all change at Accenture Song at the moment. How does the business feel to you since joining? And what are your longer term goals in your role? 



Jason> There are huge, sweeping changes happening all over culture and technology at an incredibly exciting pace. And then there’s advertising, where it seems like everyone just wants to make another candle that smells like bologna or whatever. Taking this CCO job was a bit of a trust fall, but I am now working among the smartest, most creative, most savvy thinkers in the world. And we’re all here to take massive swings. My goal is to show up with effective, relevant, next-level work that nobody has ever seen before.



LBB> Your first piece of work in this role was the Coinbase Super Bowl spot, which was massive and, like any talked about spot, did split some opinion! (Full disclosure: it was one of my faves of this year.) Firstly, can you tell us a bit about how that spot came to be?



Jason> We had a very simple assignment: promote Coinbase’s Bitcoin giveaway during the Super Bowl. Time constraints meant we could only do something easy to produce. Within about a day my partner Ragen Fykes and I had decided to use a QR code to get people to the sign-up website, make it look like a throwback DVD screensaver, and have it hit the corner like the meme so it could function as a simple narrative people could root for. But the real crux of this spot is its context… when surrounded by a parade of huge budget celebrity-based explosion spots, its lo-fi aesthetic and complete lack of words made it really stand out. 






LBB> What are your thoughts on those that were unsure about the spot and its approach?



Jason> When you say ‘unsure’, do you mean the people who loathed it and called it ‘the death of craft as we know it?’ I think they’re probably right. It’s not my most aesthetically stunning effort to date. But it did work? 20 million people scanned it. I’m sure some hated it because it didn’t meet their expectation of what a Super Bowl spot is supposed to be, or they thought it was ugly, or they didn’t get what was so special about it. But when you can get that many people to do something all at once during the most frenzied ad platform of the year, and then convert several hundred thousand of them into customers… it’s hard to argue it didn’t do its job.



LBB> In the release that announced you’d joined Accenture Song, you mentioned "a significant delta between the amazing things happening in the world of tech and entertainment and the kinda dusty things happening in advertising". Can you expand on that? Why do you think that advertising has got a little dusty?



Jason> I should probably clarify that there are a ton of talented people in advertising who are working super hard to show up with unexpected, exciting work. But it’s so difficult to push new ideas through the machine, and that means things that come out on the other side can often seem pretty stale. 

Something we are talking a lot about at Accenture Song is that the age of forced attention is coming to a close. Marketers used to be able to say, ‘Here are the three things I want you to communicate to an audience. Say them in a creative way and then I will force people to look at it by interrupting the thing they actually want to be doing.’ The task now, in a time where it is incredibly easy to skip advertising completely, is to create work for brands that the audience actually wants to engage with. It requires different thinking, but it opens up entire new ways to be both creative and effective. 



LBB> Which project from your career are you most proud of and why?



Jason> Probably the biggest turning point in my career was when I created the Elizabeth Taylor ‘White Diamonds’ perfume campaign at age 11.



LBB> What is a dream account, and what kind of work would you want to do for them?



Jason> I think there are a lot of clients out there who understand the genuine business value of creativity, and who have outsized ambitions for their brands. If we can find those people, and combine them with our creative resources and talent, the work is going to be unstoppable. 



LBB> Outside of work, what keeps you happy and inspired?



Jason> I maintain three large saltwater tanks of lampreys (often mistakenly called lamprey eels), and they take up most of my free time. Their names are Constance (F), Kellie (F), Amanda (F), Stuart (M), Jezebel (F), Oreo (M), Rick (M), Calliope (F), Scorn (M), Julia (F), Kex (M), Ophelia (F), Chemper (M), Taffy (F), Pepper (F), Mark (M), Brandon (M), Paris (M), Biscuit (F), Tabitha (F), Naruto (M), Bianca Rae (F), Jasper (M), Spud (M), Lisa Lisa (F), Allegra (F), Cope (M), Sellwood (M), Lebanese (M), Journey II (M), Deb (F) and Copernicus (M).

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Accenture Song, Fri, 22 Jul 2022 15:30:22 GMT