The Business of Meetings – Episode 197 – Shalom Motherfu**er with Eitan Chitayat
We are honored to have Eitan Chitayat joining us today! Eitan spent many years in advertising and now owns a branding agency.
In our conversation today, Eitan discusses his journey in advertising and the big names that have influenced him and offers insights into branding. He also shares his thoughts on leadership, courage, and how to make the world a better place.
Stay tuned for a unique and thought-provoking discussion with Eitan Chitayat!
A creative director, copywriter, and brand-builder, Eitan has been delivering branding campaigns for B2C and B2B clients for over 25 years. He has lived in Hong Kong, London, Tel Aviv, New York, and Boston and was a judge for one of advertising’s finest global competitions, The One Show.
Eitan has overseen and played a part in award-winning work on integrated campaigns across all mediums, most notably for Google, Apple, Facebook, YouTube, TJX, Volkswagen, Target, DHL, American Express, Yohji Yamamoto, Toyota, and AT&T. Other clients include the Israel Infrastructure Fund, the ELMA Art Complex Luxury Hotel, Medisafe, Nutrino, Amdocs, Justt, NICE, and Waterlogic. He also delivered the global branding for The Jewish Agency for Israel, IsraAID, AJCF, and works with Taglit.
He’s collaborated directly with Natan Sharansky, Bar Rafaeli, David Blaine, Yohji Yamamoto, Lior Raz, and Prince’s band, The Revolution. He’s written in and has been featured in Forbes, Quartz, Inc. Magazine, The New York Times, Variety Magazine, The Jewish Chronicle and has been interviewed in The Disruptor Series along with Snoop Dog and Making it Big.
He created the viral video I’m That Jew which has been viewed over 15 million times on various platforms and has been exhibited at the ANU Museum of the Jewish People. He also gave a TED talk about why he created the piece. He also co-created She’s That Woman, a celebration of all women.
He’s worked at Arnold Worldwide in Boston, Ogilvy & Mather, and BBDO in New York and was TBWA Digital’s executive CD in Tel Aviv. Eitan hosts the I’m That podcast and has interviewed Rose McGowan, Rosanna Arquette, Rob Schwartz, and William Green, among others. Eitan consults regularly and speaks about branding at global conferences. Eitan is happily married with two wonderful children and is doing his best to try and make the world a better place.
A Call to Speak Up
Eitan was in Germany on October 7th, the day of the horrific attack against the Jewish people. Despite his immediate urge to return home to Israel, circumstances kept him abroad for three days. During that time, he felt the urgent need to speak up and convey the shock and pain that the Jewish community was experiencing. Alone in a hotel room, he began sharing his thoughts through posts and videos, highlighting the importance of Jews and their allies raising their voices against hatred and violence.
Star of One: Unity Amidst Fractures
In response to the fractured feelings within the Jewish community, Eitan came up with the Star of One, an animated narrative symbolizing the unity of the Jewish people. He saw the triangles in the Star of David as representations of Jewish people and their diverse political, geographic, and ideological perspectives. He wrote the article to strengthen the collective spirit and resilience of the Jewish community, and his message was clear: despite their differences, Jews are one people.
The Ongoing Mission to Unify and Strengthen
Since that critical day, Eitan has continued his mission to strengthen the Jewish people. He believes in the power of expressing the Jewish experience and sentiments, not only for the community itself but also for those outside it. His ongoing posts and videos serve as a rallying cry for unity, resilience, and the unwavering spirit of a people facing adversity.
The Narrative War and Concerns for the Future
Eitan highlights the challenge of debunking simplistic yet false narratives. He points out the irony of the leader of Hamas in Gaza getting saved by Israeli doctors, explaining how that added nuanced layers to the complex conflict. He is concerned about the far-reaching consequences of the information war, particularly how it impacts society and shapes future generations.
Eitan believes in aligning actions with values, emphasizing that his authenticity is integral to his identity. He explains that for effective branding, it is essential to act authentically because genuine values are reflected not only through our actions but also through the words we use.
A Distorted Work Culture
Eitan finds the distorted work culture that sidelines Jewish people by not recognizing them as minorities disheartening. Despite 50% of Israelis being people of color, the oversimplification of Israel as a white oppressor has become a prevalent and misleading narrative.
The Oversimplification of the Alignment of Struggles
Eitan feels frustrated about the oversimplified alignment of struggles. He believes that oversimplified alliances contribute to misinformation while overlooking the nuanced realities of each unique situation.
A decade ago, Eitan wrote Shalom Motherfu**er in response to the abduction and tragic demise of three Israeli boys by Hamas. Motivated by anti-Israel sentiments on Facebook, he wrote the article to address the challenges of defending Israel amidst all the criticism. His piece received remarkable attention and was shared hundreds of thousands of times. Facing a similar situation on October 7th, Eitan revisited and revised the article, delivering a powerful 10-minute monologue on camera. He ended his monologue with the powerful phrase, shalom, motherfu**er. It went viral!
Connect with Eric Rozenberg
Connect with Eitan Chitayat
On his website: Natie Branding Agency