Andrew Saunders is a creative marketing pioneer who helps the world’s most influential brands and artists thrive across the evolving media landscape.
Throughout his career, Saunders has launched new media practices, scaled marketing divisions globally and helped generate $1B+ revenue streams. He has engineered marketing and media solutions ranging from under $150K to over $150M for more than 250 global brands including AB InBev, Amazon, Amex, Apple, Capital One, Citi, Coca-Cola, Comcast, Diageo, Disney, Facebook, Ford, General Motors, Google, Heineken, Hulu, Hyundai, Marriott, Marvel, Microsoft, Netflix, Nike, PepsiCo, P&G, Red Bull, Samsung, Starbucks, Subway, Target, Toyota, Uber, Unilever, Walmart and WarnerMedia, as well as artists like Justin Bieber, Ashton Kutcher, One Direction and Ryan Seacrest. His work has been featured in Advertising Age, Adweek, Billboard, CNN, Creativity, Entertainment Weekly, The New York Times, People, Time, USA Today, Vice, The Wall Street Journal, Wired and in Fast Company's "50 Most Innovative Companies."
Saunders currently serves as Head of Entertainment and Culture for Amazon XCM, the company’s global cross-category and cross-channel marketing organization, which encompasses brand strategy, mass advertising, digital marketing, consumer research, and media planning and investment. There he leads the Entertainment Marketing practice, which includes creator relations and the development of strategic partnerships across all areas of entertainment and culture including television, streaming, film and digital for Amazon products and services including Echo and Alexa.
Saunders formerly served as Head of Global Brand Strategy and Marketing at Tastemade, where he led the Brand Strategy, Content Partnerships, Brand Design, Business Marketing and Ad Products teams across 6 markets globally in the US, Europe, LatAm and Asia. He oversaw the strategy, development and execution of all omnichannel marketing, media, experiential and commerce solutions for advertisers across all Tastemade channels globally including digital, mobile, OTT and linear television, as well as global communications strategy, design strategy, product development and brand-building initiatives. He and team launched over 175 custom marketing campaigns with brand partners globally, including 17 company firsts.
Prior to Tastemade, Saunders was Vice President of Content Innovation and Creative at NBCUniversal, where he oversaw the company’s largest omnichannel advertising partnerships across all networks and platforms. His team was responsible for the first “Saturday Night Live” digital series, produced by Broadway Video and sponsored by Honda and Target, the first multi-network philanthropic partnership leveraging the Emmy-winning “The More You Know” sponsored by Subaru, the first multi-network celebrity talent program featuring One Direction, and the first TODAY live plaza commercial.
Saunders joined NBCU from leading talent and sports agency, Creative Artists Agency (CAA). As a founder of CAA's Brand Partnerships Division, he worked with brands and media companies to create custom entertainment marketing solutions. He also developed strategic partnerships for many of CAA’s top clients including Ashton Kutcher, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Kings of Leon, Kurtzman/Orci (Transformers), Ryan Seacrest, Scooter Braun Projects (Justin Bieber, Ariana Grande and Martin Garrix) and Will Ferrell’s Funny or Die. Saunders and team were responsible for a number of noteworthy firsts in entertainment, including the first digital series to air on network television and the first digital series to star motion picture talent. He was also one of the first to integrate advertisers into Netflix original programming.
A passionate supporter of young talent and entrepreneurs, Saunders serves as a mentor for General Assembly, supports early-stage startups through StartEngine, and guest lectures for the mSchool: Institute of Marketing. He has been a featured speaker at Advertising Week New York and Europe, the Banff World Media Festival, multiple Digiday Summits, Digital Hollywood, the NY Media Festival, Sundance, WPP Stream and other global events.
Saunders also serves as a judge for the Digiday Video Awards, Haymarket's Brand Film Festival and the Streamy Awards. He graduated Magna Cum Laude from Vanderbilt University.
“Andrew Saunders is a professor in the field of media and branded content, a sharp hybrid constantly shaping new and innovative models. He is a well-versed strategic thinker that understands the media, financial, and socio-cultural elements that form the modern branded content equation. I've never met anyone that understands the intersection of marketing and entertainment like he does.”
Creative Director WW Marketing, Apple Inc.
“Andrew has a forwarding thinking creative mind. He is able to navigate the various worlds and agenda's of agencies, creative partners, distributors and brands flawlessly - always bringing more to a project from where it started. In addition to great ideas, he knows how and where to bring them to market and come alive in new and effective ways. Plus, he’s always a pleasure to work with. You can count on him to deliver.”
President, OMD Entertainment
“As tech and media are converging more closely every day, Andrew is one of the rare few who truly understands both worlds. He has tremendous experience and expertise at the intersection of content, media, and technology, and has been an invaluable asset to me as I navigate these worlds. I highly recommend Andrew, both as a business partner, as well as a trusted friend/expert in this space.”
CEO, Zuckerberg Media
“Andrew’s one of the sharpest and most connected individuals I've come across in my career. Of his many strengths in my opinion, is his ability to connect the content dots in ways most folks can only dream about. His good energy and business creativity in general, make him a truly secret weapon at the forefront of the ever-changing media & content landscape.”
Chief Production Officer, Fallon
“Andrew is one of the brightest and most forward-thinking executives I've ever had the opportunity to work with. Over the years, he has helped us drive significant revenue and develop strong relationships across new business sectors and disciplines. Andrew has an unmatched, deep understanding of entertainment, media and brand marketing across all areas. He is one of the most connected people in entertainment with high-level personal relationships built on trust and respect. Most importantly, he has the insight and ability to develop new business models, innovative media models and strategic partnerships that take companies to the next level. He always seems to be two steps ahead of everyone else.”
EVP, Ryan Seacrest Productions
“Andrew just gets it - whether it's the intersection of marketing, entertainment and content, or your specific client's business objectives, he understands the marketing business and what is right - and most importantly, NOT right - for your business. Across marquee CPG brands like Dr. Pepper Snapple Group and Pepsi, Andrew is always a source of great thinking, great ideas and great partnership.”
Director of Global Partnerships, Omnicom
“Andrew Saunders is a forward thinking, driven professional who not only demonstrates a high degree of expertise in branding and integrated sponsorships, but is also generous in sharing his time and wealth of knowledge with others. He is truly an amazing connector and is a star on the rise. Having the privilege to work with him on various projects over the last 8 years, I have experienced firsthand his dedication to his clients, time and time again, and his willingness to do the heavy lifting to get things done. Andrew is an amazing guy I would recommend to any company who is looking for guidance from a professional who can steer their business in the right direction.”
VP, Talpa Media USA
“Andrew has been excellent at introducing me/Activision to new and interesting partners in the Content and Technology marketing world. In today's marketing eco-system, the line between great and fraud is a fine one, and separating the wheat from the chaff gets to be a full time job for marketers. Andrew's foot sense and "pre-vetting" has been a great benefit.”
VP of Global Brand Marketing, Activision
“Andrew is an exceptionally creative thinker that brings innovative solutions and fresh ideas to marketing challenges and opportunities. He has a keen understanding of the entertainment world and how to leverage it for brands and agencies. I always enjoy working with Andrew.”
President, David & Goliath
“Andrew is the real deal in the branded entertainment space. He always brings fresh ideas and untraditional thinking to a brief or creative assignment. Whether you're looking for talent, production partners, or media solutions, Andrew knows where to go and who to engage. I wouldn't hesitate to work with him again.”
EVP / Director of Production, Deutsch
“Andrew is my go to guy for advise and counsel on anything from Entertainment, Media, Technology and Social. He is a true connector of people, brands and ideas. He is a visionary with game changing thoughts. His only downside is that he is a man who is ahead of his time. Somehow, that works for him.”
Chairman/CEO, Avrett Free Ginsberg
“Andrew is one of the best sounding boards in the rapidly colliding industries of technology and entertainment. If you ever get the opportunity to bend this man's ear, do so.”
Executive Director, TBWA\Chiat\Day
“Andrew is a seriously sharp, forward-thinking mind in the digital space. He knows our business today, but also keeps an eye on where it’s headed tomorrow. Additionally, he's a trustworthy, genuinely nice person. He’s always generous with his time, knowledge, and perspective. He's just the kind of person you like to do business with.”
Sr. Director of Creative Development, AOL Originals
“Andrew is one of the most well versed and connected digital entertainment professionals in the industry. He is always my go to guy when it comes to branded content solutions, digital packaging, digital distribution, and monetization models.”
VP of Branded Entertainment, Viacom
“Andrew is one of the smartest people I’ve ever met in the areas of content creation, distribution and consumption. He is incredibly adept at identifying creative solutions for brands looking to play in the space. He understands how opportunities can execute across various platforms (offline and online) and be maximized by communications channels (such as earned media UGC, etc.). Andrew is very strategic and places his recommendations within the context of delivering measurable results for clients. To talk to him is to realize the unmet potential for so many companies to own a meaningful engagement with their customers and to do so in a creative, organic way. He's also responsive, which is a premium for anyone who often gets client requests with crazy deadlines. He's a great partner to have.”
Michelle Mikoljak Stevenson
Managing Director, Burson-Marsteller
“Andrew Saunders is one of my own most valuable and coveted marketing and partnership contacts. He has an incredible ability to connect amazing companies and brands in innovative and strategic ways that benefit all parties. Once connected to Andrew, he is constantly thinking and pitching ideas and opportunities to support your business goals and truly providing access to top tier celebrities, brands and companies.”
Brand Marketing Manager, Virgin America
“Working on behalf of clients across a wide variety of industry sectors, it is important to have allies who are able to think in broader terms than simply ‘celebrity for celebrity sake.’ Andrew is one of those allies who understands how entertainment can be used to influence the consumer but also recognizes the importance of a strong overall marketing campaign and the impact that a mixture of paid, earned, shared, and owned media can have on overall awareness and sales results. Andrew is more than simply a resource in the entertainment industry; he is a true partner in every sense of the word. I value Andrew as a friend and professional colleague and will continue to turn to him for advice, ideation, and collaboration on projects in the future.”
SVP/Partner of Global Entertainment, FleishmanHillard
“Andrew is the man. Great at getting different people together, and pointed in the same direction in terms of output and deal structure. Is very good at introducing new elements to a program without making overly complicated. Above all, very trustworthy and great to work with. He brings great energy to everything he does.”
Andrew is the most genuine, informed, networked and trustworthy executive in the digital and entertainment space - exactly what you want for a strategic "think out of the box" leader. He truly is an encyclopedia on innovation, content and digital. He is a hard-working virtual machine and his energy and enthusiasm are inspiring to colleagues, his staff and business partners. He is always the first person I contact for insights into the digital evolution and I always learn something new when I speak to him. On a side note, Andrew is one of the truly "good guys" and I look forward to working with him for years to come.
SVP of Market Research & Analytics, Focus Features
© 2015 Andrew Saunders