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Marcus Collins

Keynote Speaker

Top Booked Marketing Speaker, DEandI Thought Leader, Head of Strategy Wieden+Kennedy, AAF Advertising Hall of Achievement Inductee, 2022 Cannes Lions Jury Member and expert on Cultural Contagion

Dr. Marcus Collins is a top marketing keynote speaker, award-winning advertiser, former Head of Digital Strategy for Beyoncé, and a Marketing Professor at the Ross School of Business, University of Michigan. Over the last decade, Marcus has helped “blue-chip” brands (like McDonald’s, Google, AB-InBev, and Peloton) bridge the academic-practitioner gap to create contagious marketing ideas that excite people to take action.

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Dr. Marcus Collins is an award-winning marketer and expert on cultural contagion, meaning-making, brand strategy, and consumer behavior. He has spent his career translating culture for brands and translating brands for culture, becoming the architect of some of the best-known advertising campaigns of our time. Marcus has championed strategies for blue chip brands such as McDonald’s, Apple, Google, State Farm, Target, Peloton, and Budweiser, and even ran digital strategy for Beyonce.

He currently serves as Chief Strategy Officer for Wieden+Kennedy New York, the award-winning ad agency best known for its work for Nike and the legendary “Just Do It” campaign. He is also a columnist for Adweek, a TED speaker, and a marketing professor at the Ross School of Business, University of Michigan. His honors include being an AAF Advertising Hall of Achievement Inductee, a 2022 Cannes Lions Jury Member, a member of the 2023 Thinkers50 Radar Class, and one of the favorite professors of the University of Michigan MBA class of 2022. He is also the recipient of Advertising Age’s 40 Under 40 award and Crain’s Business’ 40 Under 40 award.

His much-anticipated book, For the Culture: The Power Behind What We Buy, What We Do, and Who We Want to Be declares that no matter what we do, we are all marketers trying to influence people in our daily lives and shows how to harness culture to inspire others to share your vision and take action.

Featured Videos

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Marcus Collins on Too Foreign For Here: The Life of a Black Sheep Tedx

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Marcus Collins on How Data & Science Create Happiness

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Marcus Collins

Marcus Collins on Creating Cultural Contagion

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Marcus Collins’s Speech Topics

  • Leading Through the Power of Culture

    Scholars often refer to leadership as the ability to influence without authority. The most powerful way to do that very thing at scale is through culture—the system of beliefs, norms and symbols that demarcate who we are and what is expected of people like us. Whether you are in a company, an organization or community, culture governs everything. Dr. Marcus Collins helps leaders understand the power of culture in influencing and changing human behavior and to develop it as a leadership tool. Audiences learn how to shape a more innovative, productive, inclusive and empathetic culture in their workplace or organization. Most importantly, they’ll learn how to harness the sway of culture to get people to move and take action.

  • Building A Stronger Culture

    No matter what your company or organization aspires to be—more innovative, more inclusive, more creative, more customer-centric, more productive, etc.—your success is 100% dependent on the culture that you create within the culture at large. Afterall, culture is the operating system of humankind. When you understand and operationalize it, it can become your organization’s superpower. In this game-changing talk, Dr. Marcus Collins walks audiences through the fundamentals of culture and how it affects who we are and who we want to be, giving audiences the tools to view any business challenge or opportunity through the powerful lens of culture. He also brings the audience together with group exercises that challenge their thinking, spark new ideas and inspire action.

  • Putting the Humanity Back into Customer Centricity

    In today’s competitive business landscape, it’s more important than ever to put the customer at the center of all business decisions. While this truth might be widely held, our ability to build organizations that are readily capable of implementing a customer centric approach is not as accessible as we might desire. This talk uncovers a perspective for customer centricity and provides actionable strategies for adopting this approach within your organization.

    Key takeaways:

    • Understand the benefits of a customer-centric approach, including increased customer satisfaction and loyalty, and how it can drive business growth and success
    • Discover strategies for creating a customer-centric culture within your organization and building a customer-centric team
    • Learn how to apply these strategies to your organization right away
  • For the Culture: The Power Behind What We Buy, What We Do, and Who We Want To Be

    Culture is a word we often use but seldom fully understand. So, why does that matter? Because there’s no force more influential on human behavior than culture. What we wear, what we watch, who we marry, how we vote, what we support, and just about every aspect of daily living is informed by—and in many ways governed by—our cultural subscription. Therefore, if we can fully understand what culture is and the underlying physics of how it works, then we can leverage its sway to get people to take action. Of course, this is powerful for marketers, politicians, leaders, managers, and anyone with a vested interest in getting people to move. In this talk, Marcus pulls from both theory and practice—using learnings from his work spearheading digital strategy for Beyoncé to working with Fortune 500 companies like Apple, McDonald’s, and Google—to break down the ways in which culture influences behavior and unpacks how to leverage its power to get people to move.


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