Ever wonder who is behind Integrated Advertising? You'll take an inside peak into the story of how Integrated Advertising first began and what makes it work so well, with this interview with President and Founder, Mary Huston.
How did Integrated Advertising start?
MH: I started my own business because I was challenged by a client to achieve certain results. In order to get those results, I set out on my own to find what would make the campaign more effective. What I didn’t realize, at the time, was that I was creating a model that we still, to this day, use for all clients to make sure that we have the best Return on Investment possible.
The client then said, “Mary, we know what you have created is from your efforts and if you were to go out on your own, we would be right behind you.” I was loyal to my company and suggested that we start a division that would track client results and the owner of that agency said “no”. That “no” led to my “yes” when I asked myself if I was willing to take a chance and go out on my own and I did. I still have some of the same clients from that first year, which continues to amazes me and makes me very grateful.
Integrated Advertising began in New York and later set down roots in Jacksonville. What made you decide on Jacksonville and how do you think the agency is affected by the Jacksonville community?
MH: I moved to Jacksonville because I had been doing business here. A client opened a new office in the Baymeadows area and I was able to visit Jacksonville. Our media partners here sold me on moving – saying it was a growing and great city! I figured worst case scenario, if it doesn’t work, I’ll move back. Twenty five years later, I’m still here! I enjoy being a bigger fish in a small pond. I was able to have access to those in government, help be a leader in the industry, and work with our local university mentoring students. I don’t think I would have had some of the same opportunities in New York City.
What do you love about creating media content?
MH: I have had the pleasure of many “firsts”. My favorite would have to be either the first TV commercial in an industry, where you sit back and wait to see if it will pass the legal department and be allowed on air because it’s brand new. Or creating a new campaign for someone who has never advertised before and it exceeds everyone’s expectation. Or what I would call “get in there and get the job done fast” campaigns, such as political ad campaigns where we HAVE to win and we only have a few weeks to do it.
You are heavily immersed in charities all over the city. What charities do you work with? Which one is the most rewarding for you?
MH: I’ve served on the board for nonprofits like PROJECT SOS -Save Our Students, which teaches healthy choices to students and young adults. I’ve raised funds to take teenagers to World Youth Day, created campaigns for local pregnancy centers, and loved being a Big Sister for Big Brothers Big Sisters for many years. I can’t remember it all, but it’s all been so rewarding. I’m thankful my parents taught me the value of giving back.
I’ve been blessed with the ability to sell ideas and create campaigns, and I love helping groups and organizations raise the money or awareness they need. I volunteer for Rachel’s Vineyard, which are retreats to help men and women who have been hurt by an abortion in their life. I get the most rewards from organizations that I get to see individual human lives change for the better and forever. One on one contact with people is what I love best.
Is there an ad campaign, outside of Integrated Advertising, that is your favorite either for the message or the design elements or both?
MH: I think the early Apple ads were outstanding. They branded that “apple” and it works to this day.
After so many successful years in the industry, what has been your favorite project?
MH: Oh, that’s a hard one. It’s got to be, when my client’s and I created the first Hair Transplant commercial to air on TV, because it had a great impact on my clients, my client’s industry and the rest of my life. That commercial broke records on response and set the course for Integrated Advertising working, creating ads for, and doing media buying with many clients in the hair restoration industry.
Is there a motto or saying that you model your business after?
MH: "Do what you do best. The rest, give to someone else." That applies to us and our clients. Our job is to do an amazing job with their advertising, and pay attention to every detail. This allows our client to do THEIR best and know that we are looking out for every dollar that is spent.
Mary Lopez Huston along with the rest of the team at Integrated Advertising has had an amazing 30 years and keeps looking forward to the future. The advertising world is ever changing and we are right there with it. If you are a company looking to “do what you do best and give the rest to someone else”, Integrated Advertising can be that someone else.
Integrated Advertising is a full service agency based in Jacksonville, FL that can help you with all aspects of advertising. We are known for our expertise in strategic planning, media negotiation and buying, our award-winning commercial production, and social media.
or call (904) 296-2585 for more information.