John Bell drives strategy and innovation around social media and word of mouth marketing and and executed award-winning programs for clients including Ford, American Express, Unilever, Cisco and Lenovo.
In 1990, John headed up the Visual Design Studio at Downtown Digital, a joint venture between Viacom and AT&T to create the most futuristic vision of interactive television anyone could imagine. He created programming for kids, gamers, and fully interactive applications for Paramount Studios and Entertainment Tonight.
He created the first Interactive Advertisement for American Express. Afterwards, John went on to form Media Circus Interactive Advertising in New York during the 1990’s. He created multiple award-winning CD-ROMs, including the first interactive advertisement on Launch, a CD-ROM zine for Sony, and the first I-Spy CD-ROM for Scholastic. He designed and built complicated transaction sites for Gateway Computers and wild experiments like MTV’s Web service that connected “stringers” all across the country reporting on the music scene in their community.
John helped the Discovery Channel transform a single Web site into a network of 14 Web properties known as Discovery.com. He also designed and built online experiences for TLC, Animal Planet, Discovery Kids, Discovery Health, Travel Channel not to mention a host of digital TV network sites and global sites.
His experience creating an online adventure service for kids with Discovery Kids, inspired him to join a startup called HiFusion committed to building a unique school-to-home Internet service for the K-12 community. They sold the company to Sylvan Ventures and he moved onto the next adventure. For him that next adventure is Ogilvy.
John graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a Bachelor of Arts in European history and spent a lot of time at the Annenberg School of Communications.
John serves as Board President of the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA) and is a professor at Johns Hopkins University where he teaches graduate courses in Digital Influence.