Geoffrey Goldberg’s journey from Broadway performer to CCO of Movers + Shakers
What did the first steps look like?
We started by making a few proof of concept videos, fun, musical and entertaining spots that brought brands to life in unexpected and compelling ways. These opened the door for us to conversations with bigger brands.
We quickly started to gain traction, leveraging my music storytelling experience in videos for Match.com, Little Tikes, and Razor Scooter. Then, when TikTok started to gain popularity, we immediately took the plunge by working with elf Cosmetics and launching what has become the most viral campaign in TikTok history.
What was a difficult obstacle to overcome?
I would say the biggest hurdle was that I had no marketing experience whatsoever. But honestly, this lack of experience, especially in the advertising world, has proven to be a long term boon and has allowed me to think outside the box, to create ideas that no other agency thinks of! So, I guess I would say the main obstacle was that we were just an unknown entity. Here are two people who run a marketing agency who are not from the agency world, trying to get a reunion based solely on our creativity and courage.
What was easier than you thought?
Find out how to tell these stories to brands! In the end, I am a storyteller, an artist, and I come without the baggage or regulations of decades of living in an agency. And so, we just came up with ideas that made sense, that made us laugh or smile, and that were unexpected, joyful, and never realized before. And these are the ideas that brands have loved.
What did you learn along the way that other people, hoping to do something similar, should know?
Every experience in your life has brought you to this moment, and one of the most important tasks in reinventing yourself is to look back and take stock of those learnings. Peel them off and build an Experiences Toolbox for yourself that you can use in any situation.
For example, starting as a performer, auditioning more than 10 times a week for months, spending 100% of my time, but being rejected 99% of the time, you could say it has nothing to do with management of an agency. But then I stand in front of an executive room, fire up the PowerPoint to ‘sell’ the biggest idea our business has ever had, and I’m like, ‘Oh yeah, I’ve been training for this my whole life. . “
Did someone or something inspire you along the way?
Collaboration. We simply cannot and must not do it alone! I’ve always been inspired by the people I work with, whether it’s on the Broadway stage, a writing partner in a musical, or the incredibly talented people I have on my team at Movers + Shakers.
What has this fundamentally changed for you?
I spent years chasing my dreams, walking into a hearing room, singing my heart out, and hoping that someone sitting behind a table would make a decision that would change my future. Now, I prefer to be the one who decides my fate, and instead of chasing dreams, I prefer to write them down.
Do you think you could go back / do you want to?
I love to dance and sing, and now I tap in my garage with my 3 year old daughter, and we sing songs together on the piano. Would I ever return to a career as an interpreter? No, I have moved on. But it will always be a part of who I am. I write, direct and am still involved in the theater world today, and I use the lessons of my entertainment experience every day to help tell stories to our clients.
Tell us your song of reinvention.
Lin-Manuel Miranda’s “My Shot” by Hamilton. I mean, come on, it had to be a Broadway song, and I’m doing a lot of pop and hip-hop work now, so I thought that would be appropriate.
Aside from the fact that Lin is an absolute genius who went out of his way to put his vision on the page, paper and ultimately on stage, and inspired people with his lyrics and music, this song captures that moment of decision. unexpectedly to lean, or back away. Seize the moment and believe in yourself through thick and thin, even when others call you crazy, and decide right away to get involved.
How would you define yourself now?
I am the co-founder and creative director of Movers + Shakers, a disruptive creative agency whose mission is to spread joy. Our clients rely on us to push them towards the future, by creating cultural relevance on mainstream and emerging social platforms.
With over 100 billion views on our TikTok campaigns, we’ve been referred to by some as “the TikTok whisperers”. We were also named one of Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies in 2021. I work to connect brands, consumer and culture in a really exciting and entertaining way!