2 Minutes With ... Nicole Parlapiano, CMO at Tubi

On Tubi's Super Bowl spot, The Wizard of Oz and TikTok faves

Nicole Parlapiano is the chief marketing officer at Tubi and has brought heart to the brand by reshaping its narrative from the ground-up. Her insight—that Tubi offers a personalized content journey, without judgment—has translated into award-winning campaigns. Parlapiano has been recognized as one of Ad Age's Leading Women for 2023 and a top marketing executive by StreamTV. Tubi's inaugural Super Bowl ads have won or been shortlisted for numerous awards, including the Super Clio.

Earlier, she held senior marketing posts at Tinder and WeWork. Parlapiano also served at VaynerMedia, helping shape efforts for Anheuser-Busch, JPMorgan Chase, L’Oreal and Sprint. 

We spent two minutes with Nicole to learn more about her background, her creative inspirations and recent work she's admired.

Nicole, tell us...

Where you grew up, and where you live now.

I grew up in Chatham, N.J. I lived in New York City for a number of years, but I now live in Hermosa Beach, Calif., with my husband and son. 

How you first realized you were creative.

When I was a little girl, I had an overactive imagination. I loved doing performances for my family, and as the oldest child, my parents were always willing to dress up and play along with me. Reenactments of The Wizard of Oz were always a favorite. 

A person you idolized creatively early on.

When I was growing up, Madonna was everything to me. She was such a trend-setting fashion icon and I loved her music. I'm especially drawn to performance art. It's the ultimate expression of creativity, and Madonna embodied that. 

A moment from high school or college that changed your life.

When I moved to New York to attend Fordham University. Going to school in New York really solidified my career trajectory. Being at the epicenter of marketing and advertising, surrounded by energy and creativity, confirmed for me that this was the field I wanted to go into. 

A visual artist or band/musician you admire.

I've always been an admirer of Gwen Stefani—from her start in No Doubt to her transition into her solo career. Her early music videos were so stylish. Much as Madonna was a cultural pillar of the '80s, Gwen Stefani defined the alt-girl attitude of the '90s. 

A book, movie, TV show or podcast you recently found inspiring.

I've recently been inspired by the "No Mercy/No Malice" episodes of the Prof G Podcast. In each episode, Scott Galloway, a professor of marketing at NYU's Stern School of Business, takes an insightful deep dive into a wide array of topics from fame to taxes.

Your favorite fictional character.    

Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz. She's compassionate yet courageous, plus her shoes are fabulous. 

Someone or something worth following in social media.

Octopusslover8 and Angel Reese on TikTok. 

How Covid-19 changed your life, personally or professionally.

My husband and I welcomed our first child, Santino, during the pandemic. Juggling working from home with a newborn was challenging, but I wouldn't change it for anything. He's my world.

One of your favorite creative projects you've ever worked on. 

I'm especially proud of the social work we did while I was at Tinder, revamping the brand's entire social presence and doubling down on TikTok. We had the opportunity to do a ton of culturally relevant work—getting Tinks and Diplo to go on a date, and working with talent including Noah Beck to create fictional pieces of content based on fan suggestions.

A recent project you're proud of.

Tubi's "Interface Interruption' Super Bowl spot—specifically the reaction that it stirred online. The ultimate compliment to me was seeing people create video content based on what we did. I loved seeing all of the TikToks that people made highlighting their reactions after they thought someone sat on the remote during the game. 

Someone else's work that inspired you years ago.

Nike's campaign with Colin Kapernick—cliche, I know, but it stood out to me because it was a risk. Nike always does beautiful, emotive work, but at the time they knew this would be a polarizing topic and they moved forward anyway. While they received some backlash, they knew that it was in line with their customer values, which was a huge equity builder. 

Someone else's work you admired lately.

Paris Hilton’s Long TikTok for Hilton Hotels. To create a 10-minute clip on a short-form platform was a bold choice. But the comedic, self-referential tone was on the nose, as was the the clever tie-in that, much like the long video, Hilton Hotels are a place you wouldn't mind staying a while. 

Your main strength as a creative person.    

That I trust those around me. I have extreme respect for the creatives that I work with and give them room to come up with bold ideas rather than trying to push my own ideas forward. 

Your biggest weakness.    

I have a short attention span and get over things quickly. When I'm in the thick of a project, I tend to get tired of looking at scripts or reviewing creative and it becomes harder to look at things objectively. 

One thing that always makes you happy.    

Looking at my son's face. 

One thing that always makes you sad.

Thinking about gun control in the United States, especially as a parent. 

What you'd be doing if you weren't in marketing.

I'd love to teach marketing at the collegiate level. A continuous highlight throughout my career has been nurturing and developing talent, so working with students would be a dream.

2 Minutes With is our regular interview series where we chat with creatives about their backgrounds, creative inspirations, work they admire and more. For more about 2 Minutes With, or to be considered for the series, please get in touch.

Jessica MacAulay
Jessica MacAulay is a contributor for Muse by Clio. She's also a recent graduate of the University of Colorado Boulder's College of Media, Communication, and Information.

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