VAN SECRIST

I am a senior-level creative with 19 years of experience in digital advertising.

In 1995, after a year of doing collateral design for the new MY ’96 Civic, I became the first art director hired for the newly-formed rpinteractive division of Rubin Postaer & Associates. Our small creative team operated with a start-up mentality and quickly garnered numerous awards (One Show, Clio, IAAA) for the Model Year ’97 Honda Automobile site. The one rule we operated under was “come up with a great idea, then we’ll figure out how to do it.” It was innovation by the seat of our pants. But it worked. All told we grew the tiny department of 7 people to 99+ over the years (about a third of that was creative), establishing RPA Interactive as a creative force to be reckoned with in Los Angeles.

At RPA and later at Genex, I created highly-targeted lower funnel advertising that ran on KBB.com and Edmunds.com. Our ads for Honda and Acura engaged car shoppers giving them access to special offers and allowing them to start the Build & Price and Comparison processes right from within the rich media banners. On regional campaigns, I collaborated with the Account Supervisor to identify the best performing ad concepts and optimize them to improve click-through rates. It was not uncommon for our work to garner industry leading CTRs as well as long engagement times with our ad units. (One unit even scored an unheard of 30% CTR). This proved to me that people want to engage with a brand provided the advertising is relevant and on their terms.

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