Adam Hanft is a brand strategist who also writes and speaks on business and cultural trends for a variety of print, television and online media. His blog,[1] which analyzes politics in a cultural context, is a partner blog of[2] A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of New York University's College of Arts and Sciences, Hanft serves on the Board of Directors[3] of Scotts Miracle-Gro, the world's largest marketer of branded consumer lawn and garden products.[4] He is also a strategic adviser to Conduit, Israel's largest Internet company,[5] LaunchBox digital, an early stage venture capital firm;[6] to Luminoso,[7] a text analytics firm that was incubated in the MIT Media Lab; and to Keas, a provider of wellness solutions using game mechanics.[clarification needed][8]

Obama for America[9] cited Hanft as an early "tech leader" who endorsed Obama in his 2008 run for office. He went on to be an unpaid digital adviser to the campaign. Hanft also advised the FCC on its "Future of Media" initiative.[10]

Strategy and brand consultingEdit

Hanft founded Hanft Projects in 2010 as a strategic consultancy that develops marketing and communication solutions for consumer brands and business-to-business companies, as well as consulting and venture firms. The firm's clients have included McKinsey, Microsoft, Conduit, Barnes & Noble,[11], Citysearch, Vinfolio, Aviary, borro, City Light Capital and Ribbit Capital.

Advertising careerEdit

Hanft is a copywriter[12] who started as a comedy writer, working for Garry Marshall.[13] Hanft has worked at Jack Tinker & Partners, and Wells Rich Greene (WRG), where he wrote the "Flick Your Bic" advertising campaign, named one of the 50 best campaigns of all time by Entertainment Weekly.[14][15]

Hanft left WRG in 1980, and started Slater Hanft Martin, which eventually became Hanft Unlimited, Inc.[16] The New York Times described the firm as "A small advertising agency that is every large agency's nightmare."[17]

Hanft's clients have included Sony,[18] Procter & Gamble,[19],[19] and, for which the firm won an Effie for marketing effectiveness in 2008.[20] He also created and orchestrated the $60MM 'It's Okay to Look' campaign for[21]

Saddam HusseinEdit

In 1992, Hanft's agency referenced Saddam Hussein in an advertisement for a client that delivered financial information. The advertisement was headlined "History has shown what happens when one source controls all the information." An Iraqi diplomat protested.[22]

Journalism and cultural criticismEdit

Hanft writes on a variety of political and cultural subjects for media that include The Daily Beast,[23] Salon,[24] Huffington Post,[25] CNN,[26] Wired,[27] The Atlantic[28] and AOL News.[29] He has also been a frequent commentator on public radio's Marketplace,[30] and has appeared regularly on TV including The Daily Show.[31] For five years he wrote the back-page column "Grist" for Inc. magazine, where he served as a Contributing Editor and Marketer-in-Chief. [32]

Dictionary of the FutureEdit

Published in 2001 and co-written with Faith Popcorn, Dictionary of the Future is described a collection of words and terms that have not yet entered mainstream dictionaries.[33]Wired called the book a "memetic encyclopedia of what's to come, an engaging crash course in bleeding-edge ideas and debatable issues".[34]

Many of the concepts and predictions published in "Dictionary of the Future" went on to become culturally-relevant phenomena, including: free-range children; ego-surfing;[35] Internet sentiment research; infographic design; locouture (local fashion); crowd-sourced new products[36] combat drones; data fasts,[37] and "online learning experts" as a job of the future.


  1. ^ Adam Hanft's SpinSeason
  2. ^ Adam Hanft - Archived November 4, 2010, at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ Scotts Miracle-Gro Shareholders Elect Adam Hanft To Board, Effective Immediately - Quick Facts
  4. ^ Gardening & Lawn Care Advice for Enthusiasts - Scotts Miracle-Gro
  5. ^ "Conduit's Website". Conduit. Retrieved 29 May 2013.
  6. ^ Adam Hanft: Executive Profile & Biography - BusinessWeek
  7. ^ "Meet the team". Luminoso. Luminoso. Archived from the original on 27 June 2014. Retrieved 30 May 2013.
  8. ^ "Meet Team Keas". Keas. Archived from the original on 30 May 2013. Retrieved 30 May 2013.
  9. ^ "TECH LEADERS ANNOUNCE SUPPORT FOR BARACK OBAMA". George Washington University Press Release. Retrieved 15 Nov 2007.
  10. ^ Kaplan, Andrew. "Can News and Information Be Appealing as Virtual Goods?". FCC Reboot Website. Retrieved 29 May 2013.
  11. ^ "Contributors". Review Contributors. Barnes & Noble. Archived from the original on 3 June 2013. Retrieved 30 May 2013.
  12. ^ What Are the Best and Worst Company Logos? - AOL Small Business
  13. ^ A Doctor's Notes - The Barnes & Noble Review
  14. ^ Dougherty, Philip H. (21 December 1982). "ADVERTISING; Slater, Hanft Gets Bic Pen Account". The New York Times.
  15. ^ Bic Corporation
  16. ^ Deutsch, Claudia H. (26 March 2004). "THE MEDIA BUSINESS: ADVERTISING -- ADDENDA; Several Agencies Make Structural Changes". The New York Times.
  17. ^ Rothenberg, Randall (6 December 1989). "THE MEDIA BUSINESS: ADVERTISING; Small Shop Benefits From A Big Client". The New York Times.
  18. ^ Foltz, Kim (21 February 1991). "THE MEDIA BUSINESS: Advertising; More Companies Assigning Projects to Outside Agencies". The New York Times.
  19. ^ a b MediaPost Publications Retools Image In New Campaign 12/28/2006 Archived September 16, 2012, at the Wayback Machine
  20. ^ Effie Awards – 2008
  21. ^ " Repositions from 'Relationships' to 'Image' - MarketingVOX". Archived from the original on 2011-09-27. Retrieved 2010-12-06.
  22. ^ Shapiro, Eben (4 November 1992). "THE MEDIA BUSINESS: ADVERTISING; Rising Caution on Using Celebrity Images". The New York Times.
  23. ^ Adam Hanft – The Daily Beast
  24. ^ Member Profile Page | Fast Company
  25. ^ Hanft, Adam. "Adam Hanft". Huffington Post.
  26. ^ "Ten most memorable political ads". CNN. 3 November 2010.
  27. ^ Hanft, Adam (2 April 2013). "The SXSW Aftermath: How Startups Can Truly Brand Themselves Post-Austin". Wired. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 30 May 2013.
  28. ^ "Bio Page". The Atlantic. Retrieved 29 May 2013.
  29. ^ Adam Hanft – Politics Daily
  30. ^ Marketplace Search Results: hanft[permanent dead link]
  31. ^ House of Ill Recruit - The Daily Show with Jon Stewart - 8/3/2005 - Video Clip | Comedy Central
  32. ^ Adam Hanft – Marketing Strategy Article – Marketing Column
  33. ^ Adam Hanft hyperion | Faith Popcorn | Napa Valley | St. Martin's Press :: American Way Magazine Archived July 18, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  34. ^ "Wired 10.01: Street Cred". Wired.
  35. ^ Popcorn, Faith; Hanft, Adam (12 December 2001). Dictionary of the Future. ISBN 0786866578.
  36. ^ Cornella, Alfons. "Ke!625 - Diccionario del futuro: innovar palabras para proyectar futuro". 4 Oct 2002. infonomia. Archived from the original on 29 June 2013. Retrieved 29 May 2013.
  37. ^ "Faith Popcorn". Retrieved 29 May 2013.