Jeffrey Cohen is the V.P. of ImageWorks LLC and I recently had the pleasure of interviewing him.
Dean - What was your first real job and what did it teach you?
Jeffrey - I was a programmer at Savage Rating Systems. The lessons I learned are too numerous to list here, but one thing I took away was to excel at any task that I was asked to do. If I made my boss's lives easier, then the sky was the limit.
Dean - Can you tell us about the history of ImageWorks?
Jeffrey - Again, how deep down the rabbit hole do you want to go? ImageWorks was started in a tiny office in my house 22 years ago to help people get on the Web. I was kind of doing it as a time filler while I was looking for another job, and things just took off. People were curious, excited, and everyone wanted to learn more. From there, we just tried to read the landscape and create and follow trends that made sense.
Dean - What do you enjoy most about working at ImageWorks?
Jeffrey - Variety, and our team. Every project is different, success looks different to every client. When you couple that with the fact that we offer so many types of solutions, blogging, design, programming, lead generation, social media, video production, etc.,well…it keeps me on my toes, but I enjoy it. That, and our team. I really enjoy the people I get to work with every day. That’s a pretty cool thing to be able to say.
Dean - What challenges have you faced during your career?
Jeffrey - The entire landscape of all things internet has changed so much from the early days of the Web. Client expectations, competitors, the “invention” of social media, the development tools, … How digital marketing works in general…It’s hard to stay on top of it all. You have to have discipline, spend some resources on R&D, and hire the right people to make it all work.
Dean - What does a typical day in the life of Jeffrey look like?
Jeffrey - A LOT of meetings, phone calls, selling, project management, some tech support, R&D, growth planning for us as well as our clients, and trying to eat healthy in the face of all of it. Again, I get bored easily, so the variety makes it exciting for me and helps to keep me engaged.
Dean - What do you think are the most important skills to possess in your field?
Jeffrey - It depends on what part of the field you want to work in. A great designer doesn’t need to be a good programmer, but it helps. An amazing social media person has to be a great communicator but doesn’t need to be a great designer…but it helps. Being able to focus on a main discipline and have an aptitude for the ancillary things that need to happen in one’s job is pretty key these days. For me, being as articulate and educationally based as possible is critical for everyone’s success. The client's as well as ours.
Dean - What trends in marketing do you think are important to pay attention to in the next few years?
Jeffrey - Search is going to be huge. And voice. As voice and search continue to grow and be intertwined with each other, the future of how ads are displayed and how people find what they are looking for is going to continue to change.
Dean - What was the last book you read?
Jeffrey - Just finished “To Sell is Human” by Daniel Pink. A masterpiece of understanding buyers' and sellers’ habits. Key for anyone in the business.
Dean - What do you do in your free time?
Jeffrey - Family, Boating, Skiing, Tennis, and a LOT of movies.
Dean - What are your top four films?
Jeffrey - In Which Genre? I’ve seen so many movies it’s hard to pin it down… Probably Goodfellas, Gattaca, The Hudsucker Proxy, and Shawshank redemption. If those movies come on TV in the background, I’m kind of compelled to stop what I’m doing and allow myself to get sucked in…