“Loquacious and personable, Salzman is an attractive blonde with attractive smarts….While she quails at being thought of as some sort of Xena of zeitgeist, a sexy sociologist probing at our inner workings, the Connecticut resident has undoubtedly placed a finger on the country’s collective pulse.” —American Way (2009)
The Guardian (in 2007) wrote that she “radiates enough energy, one suspects, to power a small town and looks as if she has just stepped off the set of Sex and the City.” She has been credited with popularizing pop-culture buzzwords from singleton to metrosexual. She lives and breathes social media, and she knows what’s coming next. (Though she’s been known to show up for work with her pajamas still on under her clothes to give herself time to get it all done.)
She’s Marian Salzman, CEO of Havas PR North America and chair of the Havas PR Global Collective. Named one of the world’s top five trendspotters, Marian is on PRWeek’s Power List 2014 and became its first Global Agency Professional of the Year in the same year. Marian was inducted into the Connecticut Women’s Hall of Fame in 2014, listed on The Holmes Report’s inaugural In2 Innovator 25 in 2013 and named to Business Insider’s 25 Most Powerful People in PR in 2012.
Among Marian’s most famous consumer campaigns are the launch of the metrosexual to create a marketplace for SAB Miller’s Peroni, Pepsi’s “It’s Like This,” and “It’s America Online.” Her most notable campaign in the past few years was Wyclef Jean’s short-lived run for president of his ravaged homeland, Haiti. Marian co-founded Cyberdialogue—the world’s first online market research company—in 1992.
Before heading Havas PR North America (@havasprus), Marian was CMO at Porter Novelli, CMO at JWT Worldwide and CSO at Euro RSCG Worldwide. She has executed thought leadership, reputation management and social media programs, including heading up the creation of Porter’s pop-up agency Jack + Bill, which in one year won top awards from PRWeek, Bulldog Reporter and SABRE (Superior Achievement in Branding and Reputation). Since she took over at Havas PR in late 2009, the agency has become one of the most awarded of its size in the U.S.
The author or co-author of 15 books, Marian is a prolific writer and currently blogs for the Huffington Post, Forbes.com and CNBC, plus various company blogs, among others. Her four-part series on the brain for HuffPost won a 2011 Bronze SABRE for Speech or Bylined Article and an honorable mention from the PR News Platinum PR Awards.
In 2012, Marian was a PR juror for the CLIO Awards, part of the international PR jury at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, and one of the final judges to select candidates for Venture for America, a program for future entrepreneurs modeled after Teach for America. She now sits on that organization’s board of directors, in addition to the board of the Bob Woodruff Foundation.
Marian graduated from Brown University with top honors.