The Insanity of Advertising | By Fred S. Goldberg

INSANITY-OF-ADVERTISING.jpgFeel like a good read over the summer break? The best-selling The Insanity of Advertising delivers a surprising inside look at unbelievable and sometimes astonishing happenings in the ad business. Real, absolutely truthful, on the ground intel from an executive who saw it happening right before his eyes. Think Walter Cronkite with a sense of humor.

From Madison Avenue to LA,  San Francisco and Silicon Valley. It's about the advertising people and their clients, at times crazy; some crazy all the time. There's a week spent with John Wayne shooting commercials, commercials he didn't want to be shooting; the untold story behind Steve Jobs and the infamous introductory Apple '1984' commercial; what it was like working with Michael Dell as Dell Computers mushroomed from $100M to $30+B; along with insights and anecdotes recounted from dealing with advertising legends like Jay Chiat, Guy Day and Lee Clow; and entrepreneurs like Larry Ellison, Les Crane, Ben Rosen, Don Kingsborough and Joseph E. Levine.

It's an entertaining and fun read, but along the way there are meaningful insights and lessons to be learned about management, entrepreneurial people and practices, and oh! most certainly the ad biz.
Industry praise for The Insanity of Advertising:

Lee Clow, Chairman and Global Director of TBWA Worldwide, Chief Creative Director of TBWA\Chiat\Day - "Fred Goldberg was the toughest "account guy" I ever knew. He'd always fight for "the work". This book is about fighting the good fight."

Jeff Goodby, Goodby, Silverstein & Partners - "Always feisty and opinionated, Goldberg takes you inside the Chiat/Day of the eighties and nineties, one of the true agency Camelot's".

Mike Sheldon, CEO Deutsch/LA _ "Insanely great book. Brilliant job."

Luke Sullivan, Fallon McElligott; The Martin Agency - "Am enjoying the heck out of your book"

Bob Jeffrey, JWT Chairman & CEO, Worldwide - "The Insanity of Advertising is a sharply written, raw account of the dynamic industry known as advertising. Fred Goldberg spent many hardworking years challenging business conventions and making keen observations about the organized chaos of the advertising world. In his notoriously blunt and humorous voice, Goldberg delivers an entertaining and insightful read."

Jordan Atlas, Executive Creative Director, Ignited - "I am a quarter of the way through your amazing book and I have to pace myself. I don't want it to end! Well done."

Norm Grey, Founder/Executive Creative Director, The Creative Circus - "I've been savoring the book as a delicate gourmet meal....the writing makes every concept, whether for an ad or a campaign, worth fighting and even dying for...It's easy to see why Fred was a creative person's best AE. And friend. And his client's best friend too."

Andy Berlin, Co-Founder, Goodby, Berlin & Silverstein - "Enjoyed the book. Read it cover to cover in one long evening. Fair, accurate and entertaining. It's a keeper".

Tom Perkins, Venture capitalist - Kleiner Perkins Caulfield & Byers - "From his perch atop two of America's most prominent and creative Ad agencies Fred Goldberg has seen it all, the giant egos, the real Mad Men in their crazy world. From tycoons to geniuses, like Steve Jobs, Goldberg reveals everything behind the scenes in a daring direct approach, both hard hitting and hilarious. A great read."

Mike Slosberg, former Creative Director, Young & Rubicam; President, Wunderman Worldwide - "This book is a wealth of real-life detail that a TV series like Mad Men has neither the time nor the knowledge to explore. If you want to come close to being there in those 'golden years' of the advertising business, you'll be in it up to your neck when you read The Insanity of Advertising."

Joel Kocher, Former President, Dell Computer - "This book recounts some of the incredible unexpected happenings and accomplishments, which we shared together, as well as many other sometimes unimaginable, preposterous stories of the advertising business in general. It's a great read."

John Ferrell, Former Chief Creative Officer, Hill Holliday New York; Creative Director, Young & Rubicam - "Fred Goldberg was more driven--and more focused--than anyone I ever met. He worked harder, he worked longer, he worked smarter than anyone else. He sought--and passionately supported--breakthrough concepts on every project in which he was involved, every bit as much as does the most gifted creative director."

Richard Mayer - Former CEO Kraft/GF; CEO Kentucky Friend Chicken - "I have been raving about the book to my friends and old associates. A great, entertaining read and a rare example of a frank, passionate and talented guy achieving such success and results.".

Dennis Holt, Founder/Chairman/CEO US International Media; Founder/CEO Western International Media - "Insanity of Advertising" is a must read for anyone in advertising or anyone hoping to become part of the advertising community."

Mike Windsor, Former CEO Ogilvy Interactive: Board member Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide - "Refreshing. Funny. Excruciatingly candid. This is the most insightful book on advertising since the industry classic, Ogilvy on Advertising."


The author was born in Chicago, grew up in Great Neck, NY, is a graduate of the University of Vermont (BS) and Stern School of Business NYU (MBA). Fred Goldberg entered advertising in 1967 joining Young & Rubicam NY after having been Marketing Research Director at P. Ballantine & Sons.  Initially a Marketing Executive, becoming an Account Executive, Account Supervisor, Management Supervisor and the youngest Senior Vice President in the firm's history at the time.  In 1977, assigned to Gallo Wine, he moved to Y&R Los Angeles soon becoming General Manager. In 1982 he joined Chiat/Day to manage the Apple Computer account.  He became President of the San Francisco office, and then Chiat/Day Chief Operating Officer and  board director. Leaving Chiat/Day in 1990 he formed his own agency, Goldberg Moser O'Neill, growing to $500M billings with clients such as Dell, Cisco, Dreyer's Ice Cream, Kia Motors and Electronic Arts. GMO was sold to IPG in 1996 and Goldberg retired in 2000. He continues to help several non-profit organizations and businesses.

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