After 16 Years of Agency Life, Copywriter's First Solo Ad Is an Instant Hit

Matt Bull's billboard wows Reddit

When longtime Richards Group copywriter Matt Bull finished his first highly visible solo gig in Dallas this week, it felt like a pretty big deal to him. And apparently Redditors agreed, giving his billboard for the local Chicken Scratch restaurant a massive boost in publicity by voting it to the site's front page on Wednesday. Part of the appeal was the creepy, counterintuitive tone of the board, which highlights Chicken Scratch's location "between some trailers and a condemned motel." But another key to Bull's success was his clear excitement at creating something on his own after a lengthy stint in agency life. "After 16 years, I quit my ad agency job to work for myself and spend more time with my family," he wrote in his Reddit post. "Thought I'd share my first solo ad with you guys—for a great local restaurant. I've worked with much bigger budgets in every media imaginable, but I've never been more proud of the outcome than this." Created with illustrator Elliott Park, the R. Crumb-esque billboard has quickly launched Bull and his one-man shop, The Department of Persuasion, into the public eye. We caught up with him for a quick Q&A about the story behind this odd bit of outdoor.