Matthew Hallock tramadol generic one of those advertising guys whose creativity courses through his veins. He’s even buy valium in his sleep. Ten years ago (he’s embarrassed to admit this, he says), an idea came to him in a dream. Hallock was working his way through mid-sized and large ad agencies in New York City while teaching at Fairfield University, Yale and the School of Visual Arts in New York. Successful by most measures, he was still looking for more when he had a wacky dream about opening an advertising agency where people worked, learned and lived.
In March 2001, his flight of fancy here wing. That was when he opened the Voice ad agency in downtown Bridgeport. Since then, he says, “There was no turning back.”
“We’ve grown up from that windowless office in downtown Bridgeport to a house in Fairfield,” Hallock explains. “It was the typical American Dream.” Still, he acknowledges, “I had a wife, two kids and a mortgage, so it was a risk.”
As a teacher, he noticed a gap in the skills of some college students today: they lack the ability to multitask.
Hallock and his staff have trained 30 interns over the years through lunch-and-learn programs and topic-based seminars. He calls the Voice a hybrid advertising agency/ad school. Senior management at the company supervise apprentice graphic designers, copywriters and account executives from college advertising programs. The firm started with local clients such as Bozzuto’s and later added Computer Associates, Marvel Comics, Emerson and the National Football League to its lineup.
“As these global companies started to go more digital with HTML 5, Flash and content-rich websites, the kids coming out of college need to be able to multitask,” he says.
“We know we have a different model, but we have set the bar high for creativity. We do have a chip on our shoulder. We know we’re better than the competition and even though we’re trying to do something different, we’re succeeding,” Hallock says. “We have real projects, actual jobs and people are noticing. We’re blowing the competition out of the water.”
The downside of that success for Hallock is that members of his staff of ten are constantly being recruited by larger agencies.
“We’ve become a supermarket for ad agencies,” Hallock says. But even as he loses designers to the advertising world, he is constantly recruiting students to work as paid interns.
“We have a tight relationship with Fairfield University,” Hallock says. “We work with their graduate research intern program’s students in English, computer science and programming and development.”
There are two apartments in the Fairfield house, which oozes advertising in every room.
“Since my forte is the history of advertising and design, I thought it would be fun to decorate the house and offices accordingly with branded merchandise and historical advertisements.”
The agency lends new meaning to the term “ad house.” The Voice will also soon become a registered museum.
— Melissa Nicefaro
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