My name is Doug Austin. I’m a NYC kid who grew up all across the United States. I went to college in Texas and then back to NYC to begin my advertising career. Today I live in Missouri with my wife and french bulldog, Nina. We have two boys: Cole, 23 and Willem, 19. I met my wife at an agency in Dallas (a long time ago) and have worked side-by-side with her for 28 years. Today, we spend our time outdoors as much as possible.
My career in advertising has spanned more than three decades. During that time I’ve had a front row seat to the evolution of marketing and how consumers respond/react to messaging. What a ride that has been. The first major shift I witnessed truly fueled my desire to lean into innovation in all aspects of what we do and what I did for clients along the way. It was a way to stay ahead of the curve, carve out a leverageable point of difference for me and the agencies I worked for and probably most important, for the clients we served. Living through what I describe as three significant shifts in marketing application has prepared me to anticipate the next shift, and the next shift, and the next shift whenever they may show up.
If I could people watch all day long, I would. I am, and have always been, fascinated by human behavior, and I suppose that innate interest is what drew me to advertising in the first place. While I can’t say it’s a hobby or sport, it certainly is my favorite thing to do.
More traditional hobbies include hiking, kayaking and any sport that includes being outside.
My favorite place is on my boat with my wife.
So many things. I love that I am trusted to create a narrative for a brand that honors them among the folks they want to reach and in a way that invites them to action. I love that I can have a hand in helping colleagues discover and exercise their creative thinking in a way that solves complex problems. I love that I have a hand in helping to build a thriving work culture that is built on trust and respect which provides a safe place for folks to freely share their creative gifts. I love that I get to show up every day knowing that I may be presented with a challenge I’ve never seen before. I love that this career has never been boring for me and that every day presents a platform to create.
Friends because who doesn’t want to hang around a coffee shop all day with their friends. Duh.
A big slice of New York-style pizza.
It would still be Advertising. I started before there were computers.
Backpacked Europe as a teenager using paper maps and books.
Stinky Cheese Man
Watching people at the train station.
My dad had a great saying: “mind your business.” This simple statement had about 100 meanings. It could literally mean it’s none of your business. It could be a reminder to keep your own business in check or when you are getting a little too big for your britches, a way to check yourself. It could mean don’t gossip. And on and on. I’ve adopted that saying and passed it on to my own kids.
Ken and his vision for the next 10 years.