Chiat/Day Design Agency

Jay Chiat & Associates was founded in 1962 by Jay Chiat and eventually merged with Faust/Day in 1968 forming Chiat/Day Design Agency with Guy Day serving as the acting president of the company until 1988. Chiat/Day was founded on the principle that creativity is king and sought to push the boundaries of what many people viewed as acceptable advertising through their creativity. Although Jay Chiat and Guy Day are no longer with the company, the advertising agency still works with recognizable and widely popular brands due to the precedent the founders set. 

Jay Chiat was born October 25, 1931 and later received his first degree from Rutgers University. After Graduating from Rutgers, Chiat attended Columbia’s Graduate School of Broadcasting and later graduated from UCLA’s Executive Program. Chait began his career at Leland Oliver Company as a copywriter eventually working his way up to Creative Director before leaving in 1962 to form Jay Chait and Associates. Guy Day was born on July 30 1930, and began his career in a mailroom of an advertising agency. Later teaming up with Tom Faust to form Faust/Day Ad Agency where Faust worked for six years before moving to Chait/Day. It was agreed between both Chiat and Faust that the winner of a coin toss would act as the president of the company, Faust won and held this position for around 20 years. 

At the beginning of Chiat/Day’s establishment they would become most notable for the introduction of account planners into the advertising business, employees who would act as a liaison between customers and the company. Another notable implementation this company made was requiring their customers to attend an initial brainstorming session. Lastly, Chait/Day made an impact through their company culture by encouraging all staff members to involve themselves in advertising campaigns to create a unified task force. 

In 1980 Chiat/Day was named Agency of the Year by Advertising Age Magazine following a series of successful ads for Yamaha, Midori, Alaska Airlines, and the Olympia Brewing Company. These series of popular advertisements caught the attention of Apple and the agency eventually began to work for a campaign for Apple’s release of the Macintosh computer. After doubts about the ad Chiat/Day created for the Macintosh that was to be run during the Superbowl in 1984, the ad ended up being a huge success which led to a long running partnership for advertising between Apple and Chiat/Day as well as created many new accounts, such as Nike, Porsche, and Pizza Hut, for the company that would lead to further success. 

As some of the bigger clients Chait/Day worked with came and went, the company began to struggle and merged with Mojo, another advertising agency, in 1989, renaming the company Chiat/Day/Mojo. The success of the merger despite hard economic times was measured at a peak of $1.2 Billion in 1989 with accounts including companies like Toshiba, Reebok, American Express, and Microsoft. Mojo provided a great deal of connections for Chiat/Day but eventually began to fail at delivering on the behalf of their accounts. Due to this internal struggle, the reputation of Chiat/Day began to suffer as well. After a great deal of losses Chiat/Day decided to part ways with Mojo in 1992. The losses Chiat/Day faced didn’t end there and continued to worsen as essential accounts were lost. 

Despite these losses, Chiat/Day continued to remain competitive and collected a few essential accounts throughout the years to come. The company prided itself on remaining one of the few independently owned advertising agencies in a business world that had transformed itself into “mega-agencies.” After facing even more losses in 1995 Chiat/Day merged with TWBA making them another one of the mega-agencies they once looked down upon. However, this merger seems to have proven successful as the companies are still merged and have shared access to major accounts such Absolut Vodka, Nintendo, Playstation, Taco Bell, and Apple once again. 

Under the leadership of Nancy Reyes, acting CEO, TBWA/Chiat/Day has worked with or created partnerships with Mountain Dew, Oculus, Adidas, RISE, Nissan, Travelers, Columbia Journalism Review, Portal, Mayo Clinic, Family Equality, Singapore Tourism, Thomson Reuters, Brooklyn Film Festival, Qualtrics, J-B Weld, Hilton, TD Bank, Tic Tac, McDonalds, Chicago Comedy Festival, and One Love.