To celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, our Hispanic/Latinx affinity group, GSDyM, has put together a list of recommendations ranging from hit Netflix shows in Spanish that have become internationally successful to works of literature to authentic places to shop/eat. There is an abundance of Hispanic talent out there…. Please enjoy our recommendations to help support the Hispanic community as you become inspired by our beautiful culture.


We created a selection based on our favorite award-winning movies and some “classics.” Some of these movies are great for learning Spanish. If the Spanish is too quick for you, we recommend using subtitles to follow along, or simply watch in English and know that you are supporting Hispanic filmmakers. Grab some Takis con salsa and hit play.

TV Shows 

Netflix and other streaming platforms are doing a great job bringing Spanish-language shows to the U.S. AND making them international hits. Here is our list of must-see TV shows:


Book-lovers, check out these must-read titles in English or Spanish!


Whether you enjoy music for dancing, relaxing, inspiration or nostalgia, these bands and albums have you covered!

Website/Blog/Media outlets

Rejoice, social media hounds and webbies, we’ve got your online entertainment right here.

ATX Restaurants 

Hungry? Restaurants are slowly starting to open back up, but there’s always “para llevar.”

Local Culture

Creators (artists, local craft makers, etc.)

Gift-giving season is right around the corner!

It’s the aroma of fried food and warm beer, getting the perfect picture in the perfect #ootd and getting the ultimate snap of the wild crowd dancing to this year’s biggest radio hit. It’s the era of music festivals and it’s not slowing down. According to a study conducted by GMR, a whopping 14.7 million millennials attended at least one music festival in 2014. With over 800 music festivals in the U.S. alone today (and a new one was probably just announced as you’re reading this), one can only imagine how the number of festival attendees continues to grow.

Millennials demand authentic, shareable experiences. To garner as much exposure with America’s largest consumer group, brands are infiltrating the music festival industry. As the commercialization of festivals rises, sponsorship spending is on the verge of hitting $1.5 billion—the equivalent of buying 3,000 trips to Mars.

Today, festivals rely on brand sponsorship and brands rely on festivals for unparalleled fan engagement. With all this partnership, it’s critical to ask, “What does a successful brand-festival relationship look like from the eyes of music fans?” As a 21-year-old self-proclaimed festival expert who has attended over 15 music festivals in the last year alone, to me, these are some of the brands that understand their market.

Shares, hashtags, selfies and tweets are the currency of the digital age, and these are the brands that get it. Their integrations are thoughtful and meaningful, not plug-and-plays. They combine elevated experiences, pop culture and once-in-a-lifetime opportunities to capitalize on millennials’ need to keep sharing moments.

Today’s festival junkies expect impressive brand integrations just as much as they expect good music, because experiences are what make spending hundreds of dollars on a single weekend worth it.

I spent two days at the Transition Percolate marketing conference in New York City, and one of the most insightful panels was titled, How to Build an Inspired Customer Community. Nikki Rappaport, director of brand and marketing at Cava Grill, has helped grow a local restaurant into a national chain with an engaged social community. Her tactics may be easier to execute within a small organization, but that’s no excuse. Here’s what we learned:

Be nimble. When Nikki started at Cava Grill, the social photography was less than stellar. She went beyond styling better food photos and actually changed the way the restaurants were presenting food. By making a few small tweaks in how the kitchen added garnish and sauces, she was able to inspire the brand’s advocates to post more pictures on social.

Follow-through is key. Cava Grill keeps track of each user asking for new restaurant locations, then follows up with them on social when they launch in the requested city. They’ve done the same with specific product requests—tagging vegetarians in social posts announcing new meat-free menu items.

These are just a few of the simple concepts presented at Transition Percolate that have a huge impact, which big brands should be executing. Changing an organization’s process is not an easy task, but if you’re nimble and you follow through, you can build an inspired customer community.


By Mallory Massa, Account Leadership Intern

“Subway introduced it, Chipotle perfected it and pizza restaurants like Blaze are really evolving it,” says David Tristano, evp of Technomic, about the cook-to-order evolution.


New restaurant concepts have instigated an evolution from fixed foods to fix your foods, a phenomenon that personalizes our taste buds. Customization plays an essential role in build-your-own-meal establishments. While reading the article “The Power To Shape Your Experience,” I had an epiphany: everything I experienced that day was customized—the animatic record I sat in on, my Chipotle bowl for dinner and this article I found on my filtered homepage.

Drafting a storyboard for a commercial, known as an animatic record, is like a Chipotle-catered lunch at GSD&M. Last week I had the privilege of sitting in on an animatic record at Pony Sound with a GSD&M account team. Sitting across from a daunting computer screen with a surplus of buttons, I never would have compared it to the mouthwatering buffet of ingredients at Chipotle, but the process of picking and choosing what sounds to include in a spot echoes the process of customizing a meal to my taste buds.

During the record, I learned that the writer and producer choose the sound based on the intended spot’s tang. For instance, certain commercials may consistently convey a sweet-loving flavor throughout them. On the other hand, the account managers build the spot to correspond with the client’s palate. For instance, a writer might think take C had better inflection on a word than in the previous takes. And sometimes editors might use the first sentence from take A and the second sentence from take C. This splice can easily mirror a half-chicken/half-steak order at Chipotle. It is all very personalized.

Once everything is recorded, the sound editor mashes the ingredients into a final spot. Each line piles onto the voice preceding it. While each voice is recorded separately, in the same way each topping is cooked individually, it is the combination that is ultimately served.

After the voices are placed in the order of the script, music must be chosen. Similarly, while I am not a green chile salsa fan, I always ask for a side of the Chipotle vinaigrette because it complements the rest of my concoction. However, when I am in the mood for something milder—in this case background noise—sour cream will suffice. The sound editor is the master of the finishing touches.

In the article, Carl Chang, founder of Pieology Pizzeria, concluded, “Many people like me are Food Network fans, and they love being exposed to how our food is prepared and our technique.” True. As a kid, my grandpa would take me to Krispy Kreme, and I would stand with my greasy hands plastered to the glass watching the doughnuts graze across the conveyer belt. I devoured the doughnut with a sense of pride and insisted on showing off my icing expertise at show and tell the next day. Watching how something is made empowers a person. It makes the mundane and tedious work behind the scenes a little sweeter. Fifteen years later as an intern, I plastered my hands to the recording glass while watching the evolution of an animatic record. I was mesmerized by the process as a whole.

Similarly, the article suggests “food preparation as a form of performance—in which case the sneeze guard is another screen for content.” At an animatic record, GSD&M uses employees to record the lines. Thus, animatic preparation is a form of performance—in which case the recording glass is a screen for voices. More so, intern preparation is a form of performance—in which case exposing us is a screen for potential employment.

To take this one step further, which may be exhausting my analogy too much—my apologies—as interns at GSD&M, we have “the power to shape OUR experience here.” Fill in the blanks. “Our universities introduced us, GSD&M perfected it, and we are evolving it.” I am looking forward to a great summer.

Forget about that peanut butter and jelly sandwich or those Thai food leftovers you packed for lunch today.  Monday, Popeyes launched the Tear’n Tenderloin – their newest tasty offering, seasoned with a custom blend of Louisiana spices, breaded and fried to perfection. Annie says it best – it’s good stuff.

Our team was jazzed (pun intended) to have the opportunity to help Popeyes bring the sounds and Cajun flavor of New Orleans to the Big Apple to fête the launch. There was chicken. There were biscuits. The Soul Rebels set the scene with the big sounds of an eight-piece brass band. There were even six custom jams including Bananas Foster sauce. Bananas Foster, people.

The good times, they were a’ rollin’. You could even say that we were “Tear’n it up.”


Two weeks ago, GSD&M hosted the third annual Industry Party during SXSW. For those of you who were there, you can vouch for us when we say it was a rocking fun time. Our partygoers were treated to a night of good food & drinks and plenty of quality music – all in true GSD&M style. Check out the photo recap of the event on our Facebook page.

We opened our doors to over 3,500 attendees starting at 7pm in the agency and our backyard.

Included in the nights’ festivities were F1 driving simlulators, experiential art demos, delicious snacks from East Side King as well as Royitos and Hat Creek Burgers, specialty cocktails, limitless photo-boothing, and even a giant ball pit (Thanks, Whil!).

Kicking things off on the music side was Wild Cub, whose electronic grooves and guitar jams were a nice ease into the night. Reggie Watts quickly turned that vibe around in the best way possible with his mind-boggling blend of poetry, beat-boxing and improvised loops. Rounding out the evening was Delta Spirit who revved the energy up with their enthusiastic blend of anthemic roots rock. It was the explosive finale we had only dreamed of.

After networking our heads off, dancing all over the place, and many a head-first dives into the pit o’ balls, we were all exhausted. But in the end, we threw an awesome party that brought so many amazing people to our turf and showed them how to have an absolute blast in Austin.

A HUGE thank you to everyone who teamed up to help us host another great SXSW party!!!

industry party 2013

Follow all of our updates for SXSW and beyond at our new site:


A new ban on food photography has been enacted in some of America’s big food cities, most notably, New York, that aims to make the dining experience more enjoyable for all diners-rather than just those with an iPhone and an instagram account.

Chefs, owners and restaurateurs are laying down the law on food photography, claiming that the flashes, posing of plates and in some extreme cases, tripod-positioning, can be distracting to other diners.

Here is the only reason why I could be pro-ban: if you’re the type of foodstagrammer who takes obnoxious flash photos of your food, your pictures are already terrible and no one wants to see them anyways.

Where I take issue with the ban is for those undercover photographers, like myself, who enjoys snapping little keepsakes for memories and envy-inducing purposes.

Food is good, I love food. You know what I like almost as much as food?  Making my friends jealous.  Robbing me of the opportunity to rub in my friends’ faces that when they were eating ramen, I was eating hama chili is almost as bad as robbing me of the hama chili all together.

While I completely understand the idea of the ban on deplorable levels of food photography, those imposing it are ignoring the unbelievable role image sharing plays in growing a business.  Social sharing is key in the taste-making game, and without it, you’re no more exciting to diners than every other 5-star yelp-rated restaurant in the city.

If this ban picks up in Austin, which I doubt it will, I have to wonder… if the masses can’t instagram it, will they eat it in the first place?


Far and away my favorite part of the Consumer Electronics Show is digital health and fitness. And lucky for me the floor space devoted to this category increased by 3x that of last year. Digital Health has been a part of CES for many years, but this year was different. There seemed to be a larger, more palpable movement in play that was driving all this attention…something that meant more than the newest collection of gadgetry to satisfy the average fitness nerd. The buzz around digital health was heard and felt in places that you wouldn’t expect. Even Bill Clinton’s speech at the Samsung keynote event mentioned technology’s vital role in improving our healthcare system.

But the highlight of the conference was the inspiring and thought-provoking Super Session panel called “The Digital Health Revolution: Body, Mind and Soul”, moderated by Arianna Huffington and including an impressive line-up of professionals in health technology.

The Digital Health Revolution panel at CES 2013

The panel was all in agreement that the healthcare system is broken…

– 75% of healthcare spending is spent on preventable diseases like diabetes and heart disease

– Patients outnumber healthcare professionals 10 to 1

With the system in crisis, the panel stressed that the key to success is to empower individuals to take control of their own personal health…managing diet, exercise and stress to prevent illness. This also means more efficient and informed interactions with healthcare professionals. Indeed, the tech industry is innovating in a way that makes this level of efficiency, control and the ability to heal ourselves entirely possible.

Wearable devices that measure the body’s bio-metrics while you do certain activities have been around for a few years. In the fitness realm, the Fitbit Flex, BodyMedia and GeoPalz iBitz (pedometer for kids) in many cases use sensor technology to provide real-time, accurate data including steps taken, calories burned and even sleep patterns. But what makes them more appealing this year over last is the improvement in look, comfort, and most importantly, making all that data accessible and usable via mobile synching with a smartphone app. Any time I want to see how calories burned and sleep habits affect my weight loss, I can. And I can even see what how my friends’ weight loss is going, too.

Fitbit Flex


GeoPalz ibitz

But of course, no matter how much working out and healthy eating you do, it doesn’t go very far if you don’t have a handle on stress. This aspect of health was not forgotten on the Health Revolution panel and on the showroom floor. Sleep and stress management tools took up almost as much space as the fitness devices, from training your brain with cool tools like the MUSE brain-sensing headband to a more warm and fuzzy solution with cute, cuddly, therapeutic robots, like the Paro seal robot. It responds to touch and gesture, just like a docile puppy would. I wanted to take that seal home with me!

MUSE brain-sensing headband

Paro Therapeutic Seal Robot

Beyond wearable devices is something that almost threw me off my chair. One of the panelists from Proteus Digital Health talked about a product they have developed that is essentially a digital pill. Imagine that every prescription pill you take has a microchip on it that measures how that medication affects your body. Can you imagine? This technology is real and right around the corner and it will transform the way individuals work with the medical community and how we manage our health.

At the close of the Health Revolution panel, Leaving CES made me hopeful that our collective health may actually turn around if we reframe the issue into something that makes people excited about getting healthy or fit…in the same way that they are excited about their smartphone and what it can do to entertain and make them more productive and in control of so many aspects of their lives. With the technology that is here at CES and right around the corner, we can.

October in Austin doesn’t mean fall like the other cities. Sure school is back in session, football season is under way, but the rest of the city remains in summer mode. The weather forecast is 80 and sunny this week and we’re all gearing up for a music festival. Festivals like Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza, Coachella, Made in America and more took over cities and we patiently waited for our turn in Austin.

And it’s finally here! Back in May, I told you my favorite non-headliner bands I’m looking forward to seeing, but now I got more GSD&Mers to weigh in. And it’s not just music they’re talking about – they are sharing advice about how to prepare yourself for Austin City Limits Music Festival on October 12-14.

Embedded image permalinkimage

Instagrams courtesy of @gsdmaustin and @aclfestival

Part I’s resident Pro’s are Melanie Mahaffey (Director of Communications), David Rockwood (VP, Community), Michael Griffith (Art Director), Reagan Ward (Copywriter), Elizabeth Thompson (UX Strategy Director) and myself.


Griff: Park downtown and walk. There is also a bus line and taxis, although I wouldn’t suggest it. Did you ever see Office Space?

David: Ride a bike or carpool with friends.

Reagan: Don’t.

Melanie: Hire a pedicab or car service to drop you off on Barton Springs. And on the way, pop by the Jarritos Flavor Festival to grab a much-needed Paloma cocktail.

Adele: Shop around downtown at the ACL Festival Satellite Shop at the On-airstreaming studios on Guadalupe and then hop on a shuttle bus at Republic Square.


David: Fill up on Chili parmesan chips from Tim Love’s Love Shack, a chicken cone (add avocado) from Mighty Cone and finish off with a fresh squeezed strawberry lemonade from Best Lemonade.

Elizabeth: Go with things that will absorb the beer. Stubb’s chopped barbecue and P.Terry’s Veggie or real burger are my go-to’s.

Melanie: Tacos, vegan tamales, truffle pomme frites – the festival has it all. Start from the far left and make your way right to experience as much local food as possible. And it will help with the booze consumption as well.

Griff: You don’t want to be that person that has to get pulled from the crowd, have your half-conscious body dragged to the medical center, while people stare and possibly post your photo on their Facebook page, only to re-surface a couple year later, do you? Plain and simple, drink water.

Find your friends

Adele: As is the case with any festival, cell phone service is a problem (even with your iPhone 5). Go to your setttings > messages > and turn off iMessage to conserve battery life and allow your message to be delivered on iPhones. And when in doubt, meet at the ART sign.

Elizabeth: Many festival-goers carry flags to help stand out in the crowd. The easiest way to carry a flag and make an impact is to put it on a collapsible fishing pole. Couldn’t be easier for front-and-center and on-the-move festival types.

Reagan: Whatever flag you choose to make, be sure it’s an inside joke so you spend your entire festival explaining it to everyone. (I don’t make flags).


Griff: They’re around. Keep your ear to the blogs and ask other concert goers. Personally I’m pretty faded by the time the concert ends. So my after party is with a pillow.

Adele: If you’re really not ready to go home, there’s a Silent Disco on the east side which is pretty fun and of course, a full array of C3 shows around town: Father John Misty and Dry the River at The Parish would be my top choice.

What else do you want to know? We’ll be sharing more Pro Tips leading up to Friday’s big day.