SBJ/October 8-14, 2012/Game Changers

Game Changers: Jennifer Bazante

Photo: STEVE MALLER PHOTOGRAPHY
Bazante helped Visa reach new heights for the London
Olympics.
Jennifer Bazante
Visa
Head of Global Brand Marketing
When Visa’s marketing team reviewed its “Go World” creative ahead of the 2012 Olympics, Jennifer Bazante, the company’s head of global brand marketing, felt like something was missing. The campaign didn’t feel complete.

The longtime Visa executive, who began her career with Colgate-Palmolive in South America, pushed her marketing team and the company’s agencies to develop another TV spot. The push resulted in Visa’s agency in Brazil, BBDO, developing the idea for an ad that showed Olympian David Boudia diving from the tallest building in the world, Dubai’s Burj Khalifa. It became one of the most recognizable spots in Visa’s 2012 “Go World” campaign, and it was an example of the marketing instincts that put Bazante at the head of the company’s most extensive global Olympic marketing effort to date.

“We never would have had that spot without Jennifer being a driving force in making it a reality,” said Matt Kauffman, Visa’s head of Olympic and NFL management. “She was able to mobilize the teams and agencies and say, ‘We have a great campaign, but there’s something missing here.’”  
— Tripp Mickle
  • What advice would you give to yourself 10 years ago?: Listen a lot. Know that you never stop learning and embrace this. Be aware you can always improve on what you have done, and look for ways to do it better. Build a strong network of people you trust and you can bounce ideas off of and cultivate those relationships.
  • How would you describe effective business leadership?: Knowing how to provide guidance to prioritize and focus on the things that are the most important. Everything else is a distraction.
  • One attribute I look for when hiring is …: A great attitude. A lot of hiring has to do with chemistry, and it is very important that there is a connection between the person and the environment.
  • Outside of work and family, I'm spending a lot of my time on …: Road cycling. I rode my first metric century a week before the 2012 Olympics and felt like an Olympian in my own way.

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING

“She has exceptional interpersonal skills and she builds really strong relationships with her team and her external partners. It’s very genuine, and if you take that approach, you have so much more success with what you’re building; people want to work with you and want to work for you. That’s a big reason she’s so successful.”

  • Jeremy Lewis, industry director, Facebook
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