Why I Chose Elasticity
Peter Panda

It’s been just about a year since the partners at Elasticity and I had a conversation about me joining the agency. In reflection, it’s been a fantastic year. I have very smart, fun and funny colleagues, I am able to contribute my skills and passion for client and business development, and I’m part of an agency that delivers great work for fantastic clients. Coming here was a great decision.

A little bit of background: I have known the fellas at Elasticity since Aaron Perlut and I worked together at FleishmanHillard, which was before my next agency stop at Weber Shandwick. My ten years at publicly traded global PR firms, as well as the changes that digital and social media were bringing to the media industry, were enough to make me want a career change. In 2010, I took a leap and went into business for myself in the financial field. Owning your own business is a great adventure, and not a lot of people are willing to take that risk. But some major life changes (a bonus baby!) were pointing me in the direction of getting back to being part of a team. But it had to be the right team and the right role for me to join.

Elasticity has a lot of stuff going for it. The founders and partners have terrific agency pedigrees, mostly from Fleishman, which means that the standards and smarts are very high around here. But there is also a distinct pull against the uncool stuff that big agencies need to do in order to pay huge margins to their holding companies. By having a culture that values relationships over unrealistically high margins, Elasticians can give a personal commitment without it being forced from them.

In addition to the understanding that we’re all going to do what we need to do to give clients great service, integrated thinking and superior ideas, everyone in the agency is treated like a professional who knows how to manage their own time.

I work with a great team of people who are experts in their specialties, whether that’s design, branding and messaging, search, paid media, social media, social community management or content development. They make it easy to be successful in getting and growing business. The same can be said of our clients and our core competencies in economic development, regional and statewide organizations, arts and education institutions, and entrepreneurial and ecommerce clients. It’s pretty hard not to get excited about companies and institutions that are working for others and that never rest on their laurels.

So, happy anniversary to me. I’ll be celebrating my official start date a month or so from now. I’m sure it will be recognized with some off-color remark that reflects one area of expertise we lack: human resources. Humanresources@goelastic.com goes straight to Aaron. And if you know Aaron, you get the irony.  

Peter Panda

Pioneering social media panda bear Tagawa “Peter” Panda was born on a Chinese game reserve in 1969. He emigrated to the United States in 1987 speaking no English, with only the fur on his back and $97 stored in a Jansport fanny-pack wrapped around his waist.

In 2003 while searching for food on the campus of Washington University, he discovered a computer lab where he would ultimately teach himself web development, graphic design, and immerse himself into the growing digital media evolution that was erupting at the time.

With his trademark surly demeanor developed during beatings on his boat ride from China to the U.S., as well as having a penchant for eating vast quantities of bamboo, and enjoying Scotch and cigars, Peter is broadly recognized for coining the phrase “social media” in 2004. He joined Elasticity in late 2009 as the agency’s director of social media strategy and wildlife relations. Friend him on Facebook here.

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