Forging A New Ad Agency: The Meaning Behind Cast Iron LA

CILA Production Group shot

Cast Iron LA?  Bit of an odd name for a marketing agency, right? Do you sell, like, kitchen equipment? Oh wait, do you specialize in like restaurant ads? Yep, we get that all the time. And quite honestly, we love to tell the story as our name has meaning for us. And just like anything […]

It’s Time To End The End Card

man on couch watching TV

Ah, the ubiquitous end card. That five-second relic slapped without question in nearly every commercial. The mere existence is a nod to marketing’s past life, grounded in the dusty idea that without it, people will be scratching their heads about where to go next. Yet, today’s customer journey is more fragmented and less predictable than […]

Website Redesign: Empowering East West Bank’s Growth

East West Bank Website

Introduction: Cast Iron LA partnered with East West Bank, an international financial institution, on a year-long, multi-phase website redesign project that included multiple stakeholder and business units. We conducted a brand session and out of it found our focus by enhancing user experience, increasing lead capture efficiency, and promoting a culturally relevant brand image. By […]

Beware the Expert Trap: Ditch Labels And Embrace Curiosity

Experience Is Valuable Yet, if that experience has you self-identify as an “expert,” “ninja,” or “rockstar,” it’s important that the label does not carry on to the approach. Experts often come to projects with answers. But true experience teaches you to approach each project with questions. Don’t assume because it worked before, it will work now. […]

What We Learned From Starting An Agency From Scratch

baking from scratch

How a Direct-To-Client Approach Enables Efficiency And Collaboration. Three years ago, my partner Luis Ramirez and I started our agency, Cast Iron LA. We went from working at the biggest agency in LA, to arguably the smallest. It’s been an interesting, rewarding and sometimes scary journey. As an exercise of reflection, we’ve collected some of the […]

CREATING DURING CORONA. How to find work/life harmony in lockdown.

Person with laptop on roof

I’m not a fan of the term “work-life balance.” You see, when you define balance, there’s an inherent assumption that work and life are two opposing forces. Positive and negative, assets and liabilities, hot and cold, wet and dry. Right and wrong. Love and hate. In a creative industry like advertising, work and life do […]

Creative Directors. It’s time to create.

This is the sign you've been looking for sign

Times like these are meant for reflection. Not for holding on to the past, but to figure out how to embrace the future. To ask yourself, Do I really like what I am doing? Am I happy, or just comfortable? I had to ask myself those same questions last year. These days, at my new […]

Short Selling: 3 Steps To Becoming A 6-Second Storyteller

Close Up of a time piece

Six-second ads are here to stay as short content becomes the new normal for many platforms. To hammer that point home, Snapchat now considers 10-seconds as long-form video.  Yep. 10. If you are a creative reading this, I can feel the collective eye roll. Many teams stress about their ability to tell a story in […]

Intellectual Property In The Age Of Social Media

Handcuffs with social media logos on fingerprint sheet

How BRANDS (AND POLITICIANS) are breaking The Law. These days, the rise of social media has produced a gray area for brands and politicians, as some unknowingly assume high risk in their pursuit to be topical and clever while attaching themselves to celebrities. Most recently, Mike Bloomberg took to the social world to inundate people […]

5 Ways For Agencies To Build Stronger Client Relationships

Outstretched hand

Recently on LinkedIn, someone posted a battle meme with the caption “Waiting for client feedback on banners.” Yes, it was meant as a joke, but it seemed to be grounded in truth. Many people shared their battles in the comments to the amusement of other agency peeps. Which led me to ponder the following question: […]