A Conversation with Carrie McCament, Brand Builder and Big Thinker

  • Categories:

    Agency News, Inspiration

  • Date:

    July 19, 2018

A Conversation with Carrie McCament, Brand Builder and Big Thinker

Agency News, Inspiration

It’s an exciting time for the creative industry and Wray Ward, and we’re thrilled to welcome Carrie McCament, vice president, director of client engagement and newest member of our leadership team. Throughout a marketing career with stops at IPG, Omnicom and Publicis, Carrie’s affinity for big ideas — and her knack for transforming them into actionable plans and tangible results — has left a lasting impact on global brands and major initiatives. 

So, what makes Carrie tick? We sat down to talk more about culture, killer instincts and everything in between. If our conversation made one thing clear, it’s this: her brand of innovative thinking and her strategic mindset are a natural fit for Wray Ward and our clients.

Welcome to the team, Carrie. We hope you feel right at home. 

Why Wray Ward?

CM: Our shared story started a decade ago, when I first met Wray Ward owner and Chief Creative Officer Jennifer Appleby. I knew Jennifer had something special in Charlotte — and it wasn’t hard to see. After all, Wray Ward was already an iconic brand when it became a home category expert. But Jennifer saw the writing on the wall before many of her peers. She understood the strategic potential of bucking the traditional, do-anything competitive landscape, and Wray Ward went on to succeed at specialization where many other marketing agencies failed.

Then, of course, there’s the work. The work, the work, the work. It’s unbelievably beautiful, from the concept boards to the strategies behind the boards. Wray Ward has a wide range of 100-plus skilled people in a single office in a Southern city, and because of the work, this agency can compete with anyone. 

The culture drew me in, too. The people here aren’t just smart — they have an authentic passion for their agency. They’re talented. They’re channel experts. And, the agency head is a creative. She’s the perfect blend of left-brain and right-brain mindsets, and she has a vision.

When I recently decided to make a career change, it all came together for me. I just knew that somehow I’m a piece to the puzzle.  

You’re passionate about the marketing-to-women mindset. Can you tell me more?

CM: Who buys everything? Who makes all the decisions? Travel? Finance? Home? It’s women.

I’ve always had a marketing-to-women mindset, but in 2002, I had the opportunity to take it to the next level. I was part of an incredible team that launched and built Frank About Women, an innovative marketing-to-women consultancy of MullenLowe. We created a proprietary approach to the marketplace, counseling worldwide companies like P&G, Kimberly Clark, Hamilton Beach and Hallmark on gender-savvy brand strategies and revitalization programs. Our work opened my eyes to the fact that it wasn’t just the consultancy that focused on women. It was the marketplace. 

Sixteen years later, gender dynamics and purchasing dynamics haven’t changed. This is still very much how our world operates, and it’s still very much a part of me. 

You’re known as a purveyor of big ideas. What does that mean?

CM: Quite simply, big ideas are important because, to a certain extent, everything’s been done. Meaning, in today’s world, you won’t make it to the final round of a pitch with a tight budget and solid work. Ordinary doesn’t cut it, even if it’s sound. 

Instead, you need the epiphany. The aha moment. The intersection of great minds coming together and the brainstorming sessions you never forget. Aha moments don’t happen every day, but when they do, they’re magical. And those moments, more than anything else, are the purveyor of big ideas.

I hear you’ve also earned a reputation for having killer instincts. Can you tell me more about that?

CM: I believe some people are instinctive the moment they leave the womb. I’m not sure that describes me, but I’ve made sure to capitalize on my many years of learning and understanding how to maintain and grow accounts and businesses. Today, I’m wholly committed to knowing brands inside and out and conceiving stand-out strategies supported by fresh, exciting tactical approaches. After all, that’s the only way for brands to build true loyalty in a dynamic and exceedingly competitive marketplace.

What’s your vision for the future of Wray Ward? For your own career?

CM: I made a calculated decision to join this shop. There aren’t many agencies that can claim upwards of 15 clients with healthy budgets in a vertical market, and some of those clients have trusted Wray Ward for decades. Yet Wray Ward is still on a long-lived growth trajectory, and I want to be part of that. 

Meanwhile, I’m always asking, “What’s next?” I believe even the best situations — and the most impressive track records — beg that question. I didn’t chase this opportunity to become part of the status quo. I’d rather be part of the future, and Jennifer and her team share that vision. 

Explore more articles from Wray Ward.