This Much I Learned: The Marketoonist on 20 years with an accidental alter ego

In the latest episode of Marketing Week’s podcast series, Tom Fishburne discusses the origin story of the Marketoonist, the birth of his artistic alter ego and why humour is an untapped opportunity for brands.

Back in October 2002 Tom Fishburne, then an associate marketing manager at General Mills in Minneapolis, started sharing a marketing themed cartoon with his fellow graduate hires. The idea was to poke fun at life in the marketing trenches – less poison pen, more laughing at the daily struggles.

Little did he know the cartoon would prove an instant hit, engaging colleagues from the wider business, other companies and even different countries. The cartoons soon drew the attention of the CMO, who invited Fishburne to lunch to get to know him better.

Fast forward to 2022 and Fishburne – aka the Marketoonist – is a celebrated cartoonist who has worked with more than 200 brands on custom commissions and given Ted Talks on the power of humour.

In the latest episode of the This Much I Learned podcast, Fishburne discusses how he has refined his creative process over the past 20 years, overcome imposter syndrome and explored the transformative role for humour in business.

He shares his favourite cartoons from the past two decades, urging marketers to forget the fear and seize on the “untapped opportunity” of using comedy to stand out from the crowd.

From opening up about mental health issues to closing the career confidence gap, you can listen to previous episodes of Marketing Week’s This Much I Learned podcast on Apple Podcasts, Soundcloud and Spotify.