Q&A: How One Media Agency Finds a Balance Between Working With Big Brands and Startups

PHD CEO Nathan Brown talks about the little fish

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Many in marketing want to work at the hottest new company “disrupting” a certain kind of business, be it shaving, pharmacies or even milk.

But most ad agencies don’t have that luxury, especially if they’re owned by parent companies that report, first and foremost, to their investors.

Media network PHD is part of Omnicom, the world’s second-largest holding group. Yet U.S. CEO Nathan Brown, who has led the agency’s U.S. division since 2014, counterintuitively sees it as a “challenger brand” due to a strategy that involves balancing the business of big spenders like Delta Air Lines (and its newest



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