It’s Okay if You Hate-Like Our Issue This Month

Jennifer Zurko

You know those Captain Obvious commercials for They’re hilarious, relatable and memorable—what every advertiser wants in a marketing campaign.

If you’re not familiar with them, they show bummed-out people seeing their friends’ social media posts while on a fabulous vacation having way more fun/a better relationship, giving them romance/vacation/life envy. The objective, as Captain Obvious would obviously point out, is to get you to book a trip via He always ends with, “Don’t hate-like their trip—book yours on!”

That’s how I feel when I see Ryan McEnaney’s posts on Facebook. His life is just so much cooler and more interesting than mine.

Oh, I’m not like Single-White-Female-jealous. Nothing like that. Ryan isn’t only an industry colleague, but he’s a dear friend. I’m more like Man-That’s-So-Cool-jealous. And also, I-Know-That-Guy-excited at the same time. I think I’m just jazzed that I’ve hung out with someone who’s been in the same room with many A-list celebrities and musicians. Ryan has helped to make the people you see on the screen, on TV and in magazines look the part at awards shows and red-carpet events, while also elevating his clients’ brands.

After being a part of the insanity of celebrity entertainment, to just decide to move back to Minnesota and earn a spot on his family’s company marketing team is crazy and logical all at the same time. One of the many reasons why I like Ryan is because he’s a genuine, down-to-earth, nice person, who never got caught up in the LA scene, remaining a good ’ol Midwestern boy at heart. I’m not sure I would come back from Hollywood as unchanged.

To be a publicist, you have to be creative, resourceful, confident and have a thick skin—all of this has helped Ryan in his role as part of Bailey’s marketing team. He still gets to come up with all of those amazing ideas, using his contacts in consumer media and entertainment, while also staying firmly rooted in the reality that growing operations have smaller budgets and are risk-adverse to what some would consider pipedreams. His boss Alec and mom Terri have expertly balanced allowing Ryan to stretch his creative muscles, while also making sure he’s done all the research to back it up. Bailey doesn’t say yes to every one of Ryan’s ideas and he freely admits that’s a good thing.

Instead of being part of the crew behind the scenes getting celebrities and Bailey’s plants ready for their close-ups, we put Ryan on the cover of our Fast Company-inspired issue to highlight how he and the Bailey team has changed the way our industry thinks about marketing.

And as with every December issue, we have the results of our annual Wage & Benefit Survey, plus articles on hiring techniques, investments and tax savings to round out our focus on business, marketing and human resources.  

Oh, and did I mention that we also have Bobby Berk and Regina King featured in the pages of our humble little trade publication? In that case, it’s okay if you hate-like our issue this month, as long as you find it full of useful, valuable information. We don’t need Captain Obvious to tell us that’s what we strive for in every issue. GT