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Alumni Spotlight: Ian Bezanson, Class of 2004
Even though Ian Bezanson (BCS’04) was enrolled in the Bachelor of Computer Science program, he actually had aspirations of being a local restauranteur in Halifax after graduation.
“When I was a student, I was exposed to the exciting sides of working in restaurants,” recalls Bezanson. “Once I graduated, I became fully enveloped in the business, understanding the rate of failure in that industry and what it takes to make it. That wasn’t the path for me at that stage in my career, though I do romanticize it from time to time.”
In the years following, he decided to further advance his technical skills in roles as a systems administrator for a large multi-national corporation and a software developer for a sports company.
He, then, discovered marketing and his focus and interest very quickly shifted.
“I became really interested in using technology in creative ways to solve business problems,” Bezanson says. It’s been ten years since he entered the field, and he continues to love every aspect of what he does.
In 2000, he created and led his own marketing agency, Bits Creative Agency, a full-service creative agency that transformed brand aspirations into reality through marketing, branding, digital designs, and web creations. Recently - eight years into running this Halifax-based company - Bits was acquired by Halifax’s Trampoline Branding Subsidiary, Twist by Trampoline.
Now, as Director of Technology for the newly-formed company, Twist & Bits, Bezanson is described as being “always focused on the larger picture, [he’s] the calming force within the organization.”
His approach is simple. It’s client-focused. “First and foremost, we work to understand our client’s business needs, goals, and gauges for success,” he says. “Working within teams that cut across both creative and tech, we look to understand our clients’ customers (both their existing and desired), we conduct research to understand their behaviour, and develop personas and hypotheses that drive our strategy for how we can help them achieve – and measure the success of – their goals.”
Bezanson says that this kind of collaboration is really motivating. “It allows for a really well-rounded and inspired approach to any work we do. It forces us to always be open to different perspectives as well as look in unexpected places for valuable insights.”
So how did an undergraduate degree in computer science help equip him for this success?
“Dalhousie’s CS program did a really good job at helping me develop a strong foundation for proper software development,” says Bezanson. “About five years out, I found myself with a strong level of critical thinking that I attribute to my learnings at Dal.”
Although it's not exactly how he originally thought he'd be spending his days after university, he says he couldn't imagine it any other way. He’s ingrained into the local marketing scene here in Halifax and loves that the sense of community he felt as a student at Dal has carried through in everything he has done since.
When not thinking about how to innovate and solve problem, he spends his time either running the streets of Halifax or cooking at home for his wife – and fellow CS alum! – and two young boys.
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