Work: Brands that matter

TODD NELSON | Updated 3/27/2013

Haberman’s new creative director Troy Longie seeks work with purpose.

Troy Longie working at Mano ad agency in 2005.
Photo by David Brewster

Troy Longie, who finds working on purposeful brands rewarding, will continue that focus as the new creative director at Haberman, a full-service marketing agency in Minneapolis. Haberman’s mission — to “tell the stories of pioneers who are making a difference in the world” — appealed to Longie’s desire to do meaningful work.

Longie joins Haberman from Mono, the Minneapolis advertising and branding agency, where he was creative co-chair. He also has been creative director at Minneapolis agencies Olson and Clarity Coverdale Fury.

Longie’s previous work includes campaigns for Quitplan, a nonprofit smoking cessation program; the Target Market youth anti-tobacco program; and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota’s effort to fight obesity.

“I’ve felt most rewarded when I’ve helped meaningful brands matter more,” Longie said. “That’s always made me feel good, when I can use my skills set in the name of good.”

That insight came from the “ghost” commercial he helped create for Quitplan several years ago. A toddler walking toward his grandfather instead passes through the old man’s ghost before the spot ends with the message: “Be there tomorrow. Stop smoking today.”

His parents, both longtime smokers, were among those who told him they quit after seeing the commercial.

“I think Troy just wrote a commercial to me,” Longie said his father told his mother after viewing the spot. “I found that to be really powerful.”

Q: So meaningful work doesn’t have to be vanilla, given some of the provocative work you’ve created?

A: Whatever the business marketing problem you’re trying to solve, it needs to be grounded in sound strategy and then the creative has to be something you’ve never seen before. It has to be different to truly be effective.

Q: What is your goal at Haberman?

A: To inspire innovative and inventive creative ideas. I’m also there to help develop creative talent, to elevate the creative to match Haberman’s smart strategic thinking and marketing savvy. It will be my role to bring the best out of them and to challenge them as well as to challenge myself.

Q: Why should a company or organization go to Haberman for marketing services?

A: Haberman is a group of smart strategic thinkers who love nothing more than to collaborate with clients to help solve tough business problems with inventive, creative ideas. There’s an authenticity and a genuineness to engage consumers in your brand and to change behaviors, all in the name of good.

Troy Longie

Age: 41.

Job: Creative director.

Employer: Haberman.

Education: Bachelor of science in mass communications, St. Cloud State University.