Amanda Richman Director of Digital Services, MediaVest
Like many agency media executives, Amanda Richman began her career in the traditional agency business, before the great unbundling that cleaved media and creative into separate types of agencies, back when the word digital was more likely to be used in reference to watches than widgets.
Starting her career at Young & Rubicam, she had an early fascination with entertainment marketing, which led her to Time Warner's Full Service Network. As old hands in the digital space will tell you, this was one of the first high-profile interactive TV experiments, "When Time Warner was looking at that as kind of the Holy Grail," she recalls.
It wasn't. But that didn't deter Richman, who says she felt the way many people did at the time: "That something was coming," she said, and that big, exciting - though unclear - changes were about to happen in the media business. From those early beginnings, Richman went onto a lengthy career at a variety of Interpublic Group interactive shops, working on such major clients as Coca-Cola, Johnson & Johnson, Microsoft and Unilever. After rising to account director at ipg's Zentropy Partners (which later became part of MRM), she joined Mediavest in 2005, where her habit of working on the world's biggest clients continued - she joined as digital group client director and worked on Procter & Gamble, winning the client's Global Media Innovation award in 2007. She was named director of digital services later that year.
While many digital executives spend their time predicting the future and proselytizing clients, Richman's approach has an air of practicality. She loves the huge reams of data that marketers can get from their digital endeavors, providing insights into behavior. Asked what projects excite her, she replies that it's the ones that marry "content and measurement and data." So, while others focus on finding the next big thing, Richman prefers to listen to what clients want to get out of digital and "then do the matchmaking with the right solution" to meet their goals.