What do you love most about the Abel Twitchell collective?
The team! Because once this crew starts I have to wipe away tears I’m usually laughing so hard. But I can’t leave out the community of Harrisville, where Abel Twitchell is based. There’s nothing like walking up the hill to the general store and being greeted like an old friend (which by now, nearly 3 years and countless cups of coffee later, we are).
What is your most memorable Abel Twitchell moment?
There are many, but what stands out most is helping launch our first ad campaign in early 2011 and thinking, “this will actually work”. There’s a big difference between ideas and ideals – and an actual business generating real revenue. I went through the same process when I co-founded RenewableEnergyWorld.com back in 1998. That 13-year venture helped me avoid many of the early start-up mistakes here and be on the leading edge (instead of the bleeding edge) for Abel Twichell clients.
You traveled extensively as a child & lived in Nepal as a young adult. How do those influences shape Abel Twitchell’s day-to-day operations?
I grew up in England, Germany and then the U.S., and have traveled all over Europe and Asia. I also lived in a very small village in Nepal for several months and spent nearly 2 years there in total. When you experience another country, especially a poor one, not just from a tourist perspective, but really living with and among the people, it connects you in a different way with the world. You start understanding the privilege we have here and with privilege, comes responsibility. I think it’s important to always be kind to people. I also really believe in the power of business as a transformative tool to lift people out of poverty. That’s why while most people call it advertising or marketing, I like to think of it as a collaboration to really drive positive change.
If you weren’t at work, what would you be doing?
Building wooden train tracks for my littlest boys, practicing Tae Kwan Do with my teenagers or cooking a meal for friends probably, which all involves spending time with my family. I have four great kids, each of whom I’m incredibly proud of (but as a whole unit keep me very busy) and a lovely wife (who deserves more date-nights). Or on my bicycle, but that’s fairly rare these days… but there’s always tomorrow. So let’s hope!