Experiencing explosive growth but also an increase in competition, Rubicon Project needed a way to stand out in the advertising technology market. Karl partnered with executive leadership to position Rubicon Project as a thought leader in the industry and increase their valuatio on Wall Street. The first Automation Summit brought together Rubicon’s most-valued customers, technology partners, press and financial analysts. The success of the program led six analysts, including Goldman Sachs, to increase the target price of RUBI by $6 - $10 (30% - 50%) per share.
After his success launching the CLIO Healthcare Awards, Cannes Lions reach out to Karl to help in the creation of the inaugural Lions Health Festival. The awards recognize the challenges inherent in advertising that is regulated by government organizations around the world. The goal was to create something in keeping with the Lions brand while distinguishing itself from the CLIO Healthcare Awards. Karl consulted on everything from entry systems to the selection of the inaugural jury. The first Lions Health Festival quickly became the world’s largest award for the healthcare advertising industry.
The Association of American Advertising Agencies (4A's) asked Karl to reassess the O'Toole Awards and find a way to integrate the 4A's mission into a rejuvenated program. The O'Toole Awards simply lacked visibility and couldn't compete in the crowded space of creative awards. In his research, Karl found that agencies were increasingly being asked by clients to partner with other companies (sometimes competitors) to produce more effective work, faster and cheaper. Recognizing the challenges associated with partnerships, Karl worked with executive leadership at the 4A's to create the 4A's Partner Awards to replace the O'Toole Awards. The awards celebrate great creative that was only made possible by the synergy of two or more partners. Winners of the award can now demonstrate to prospective clients they have the ability to partner with other companies to ensure the success of the client.
When Karl took the helm of the CLIO Awards, it was an aging brand that had lost its prestige in the advertising industry and experienced growing costs that threatened the future of the program. Karl spent time with the top creative agencies in the industry to understand their challenges and the benefit of an awards program like CLIO. Careful consideration and planning led to some significant changes that brought CLIO back to prominence. CLIO experienced its highest profitability in 50 years and received significant press for its comeback. Karl even managed to convince Matthew Weiner to include CLIO in the storyline of AMC's Mad Men.
Learning from his experiences with the CLIO Awards, Karl took an award show from The Hollywood Reporter that was scheduled to be canceled and brought it back to prominence in the entertainment industry. The Key Art Awards, which celebrate film and television advertising, had been dominated by the major motion picture studios and the results had been a predictable award show where only blockbusters took home the prize. The new process meant that only the best creative in the industry received the honor of a Key Art Award and the winners ranged from foreign films to independent productions and box office receipts were no longer an indication of great work.
Sometimes simplicity is the best solution. Adweek did their very best to create interesting and compelling live content for the advertising industry but performance was spotty at best. Despite Karl's success launching live content like Music & Advertising and Social Media Strategies, he recognized the best brand strategy for Adweek was to honor their readership. Karl worked to sunset Adweek's struggling events so that efforts could be focused on honor programs like Brand Genius, the Hot List and Buzz Awards. Profitability increased significantly and recognition of the awards grew by leaps and bounds.
At the time that Karl joined the company, Billboard events were small, intimate gatherings for the music business but they lacked the powerful industry players. Calling upon his experience producing live content for the technology industry, Karl brought structure to the process and created a formula that attracted the top producers, managers and artists in the business. The number of specialized awards that Billboard hosted nearly tripled and revenues grew from under $3MM to over $11MM.