The AdPulp Ebook Overview: “Black on Madison Avenue” by Mark Robinson

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In his new ebook, Black on Madison Avenue, Mark Robinson does one thing few different promoting autobiographies do: he takes us again to a unique period and ties it to our difficult, irritating present period. He’s the consummate promoting account govt, coming of age when large New York-based advert companies offered intensive coaching to their new account executives and launched them into ever-increasing obligations and high-profile assignments.

From there, Robinson walks us by an amazingly profitable profession. Ranging from his expertise with the 4A’s Multicultural Promoting Intern Program (MAIP), Robinson moved on to a number of giant NYC companies, then gained expertise with Uniworld, labored with Spike Lee to open a brand new company aligned with DDB, created a multicultural holding firm, spent a while on the shopper aspect and even launched his personal model of merchandise.

What struck me most about Robinson and his writing model is his formality and lack of hyperbole. He’s a buttoned-up man and it exhibits as he walks us by his many triumphs. And that’s additionally what I’d take into account to be a weak spot within the ebook, not the person: He doesn’t ever handle a significant failure, stroll by an extensively difficult time, or present us classes to construct on. And since many advert company memoirs are written by creatives who don’t thoughts admitting their screwups, it will’ve made for a extra fascinating learn if Robinson had shared a stumble or two. (Even getting personally sued by a well-known movie star didn’t appear to ruffle his feathers an excessive amount of.)

Because the title would recommend, Robinson stood out in a sea of pale faces on Madison Avenue however apart from hinting at a number of microaggressions, nothing appeared to face in his method. If you happen to’re in search of provocative “holy shit, that truly occurred?” tales like those my good friend Derek Walker mentions on social media or a no-holds-barred revelatory ebook like Knock the Hustle by Hadji Williams, you’re not going to search out them right here.

Robinson acknowledges how far the trade has to go in its want to rent, promote, and advocate for blacks and different minorities, and presents a number of recommendations for enchancment, however all of that comes close to the top of the ebook. Nonetheless, Black on Madison Avenue is a good take a look at one man’s spectacular profession, in addition to an essential reminder to all of us that lots of our trade’s most essential tales stay missed and untold.

Particular due to Mark for giving me a overview copy.

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