Our Q&A with Telly Jury Council Member Ashish VermaGlobal Head of Bloomberg Media Studios
As the Global Head of Bloomberg Media Studios, Ashish merges data science and strategy to craft creative solutions that allow brands to meaningfully connect with Bloomberg’s audience of leaders and influencers. Bloomberg Media Studios has grown over 40% under his direction, becoming an award-winning powerhouse through campaigns that touch virtually every industry, from luxury and technology to health and finance.
Over the past 20 years, Ashish has been driven by his belief that the best creative work is rooted in science and purpose. Prior to Bloomberg, he was Managing Director of Kelton, where he expanded a research company into an insights-driven Brand Development & Innovation consultancy for clients like Google, Diageo and Pfizer. Before that, Ashish brought his passion for innovative thinking to game design at Atari, where he launched the first-generation Sony Playstation; branded entertainment at William Morris Endeavor, where he worked to gamify brand experiences; and to advertising agencies like Digitas, where he established the creative practice for health and wellness in New York.
Ashish’s creative impetus has resulted in numerous awards and industry recognition from Communication Arts, Creativity, Digiday, Webby’s, Cannes Corporate and more. He holds a BFA in Design from Illinois Wesleyan University and an MFA in Computer Art from the School of Visual Arts, New York. His interactive art has been exhibited at the NTT Center in Tokyo, ZKM in Karlsruhe, German, and the Postmasters Gallery in New York. He is fluent in Hindi, struggles with Italian and lives with his daughter in Brooklyn.
Read our Q&A below to get to know Ashish!
How do you define creative success?
The definition of creative success hasn’t changed over the years for me. It’s about being able to have a meaningful connection with your audience, that either moves them in the way they think or behave. Ultimately, good creative is about creating, reinforcing or instilling a shift in a person’s relationship with the brand.
Have you had to/willingly make any changes following the reemergence of the industry after the height of the pandemic? Ie. work structure, remote working, remote production, etc.
Creative work is best when collaborative. The pandemic has forced us to find a balance between retaining the convenience and flexibility of remote work and recreating the magic that happens in a room, when the air is charged with creative energy and colliding ideas. It has been a lot of experimentation with digital tools and new approaches. Legacy processes have been thrown into question and new ways of working have been illuminated – some that will sustain themselves post-pandemic. I don’t think we have all the answers yet but we’re definitely getting better at it everyday.
How would you describe your creative process? Could you provide details?
You might argue that “creative process” is an oxymoron, but what has always worked for me is getting smart at the outset, diving into the subject matter, the landscape, and the audience. What I love about Bloomberg Media is the depth of intelligence and data that allows us to immerse ourselves in the critical issues facing established and emerging leaders today. No other competitor in the space has proprietary expertise and insight like we do. Once you have that as your anchor, the ideation process can flow more freely and organically.
What are some of the challenges that you face moving ahead into a content heavy landscape for 2022?
We have surpassed peak content – more content is being produced than anyone physically has time to read and absorb. There is so much wasted content piling up in digital landfills. Our response at Bloomberg Media Studios is about being mindful of what we create, why it exists, how it’s developed and where it’s distributed. It’s not enough to create great content, we have to work much harder to get in front of the right people and be compelling enough to demand attention and provide value.
What are some of your creative goals for the upcoming year? How do you plan on achieving them?
Our goal is to address the challenge I spoke about above. How do we break through the volume of content being churned out by brands, publishers, agencies and others? How do we stand out from the sea of sameness that seems to be surging within brand content? At Bloomberg Media Studios, we are in a position to redefine what brand content means to our audience and how it can be additive and essential to their experience. With Bloomberg L.P., we are backed by one of the most trusted and influential brands which gives us the ability to see the world like no one else. We unlock that value for our clients and audiences.
At the same time, we are very invested in our talent. While we’ve seen record growth in our revenue, the last couple of years have taken a toll on our team. We are ambitious but we can only get there if we help our creative talent find the balance and space to nourish themselves personally and creatively.
What does being part of the Telly Awards Silver Council mean to you?
It means a lot being part of a community of diverse, accomplished people. It’s the kind of collective that helps recognize and celebrate work that’s entertaining, informing, and educating audiences. It’s what we need now more than ever.
What is one thing the Telly Awards community should know about you?
I am restless and sometimes impatient. But what I’m learning is that it’s not always about leaping to the next big thing. Oftentimes it’s about sitting still and refining what you have to the very best it can be. It’s a life lesson I credit to my six-year old daughter.