New Kids on the Block
AdAge’s A-List for 2018 is here. If you’re unfamiliar, the annual list ranks agencies according to factors like creativity and business savvy. The top-10 list is full of familiar names and campaigns, but as a small agency, we thought we’d highlight the newcomers and underdogs:
This three-year-old shop makes the list for their new-world agency model. In lieu of pre-determined budgets, they’ve opted for a pay-for-performance structure. This helps put client’s minds at ease in taking creative risks as well as incentivizing agencies to create their best work. Bullish even has a portion of the agency dedicated to investment.
We’re smitten with Preacher’s work after taking note of their experiential marketing chops. For a 45-person shop, they boast an impressive roster of big-name clients, such as Samsung, Squarespace, Shinola, Nike, and Venmo. To celebrate Bumble’s Photo Verification feature, built to combat the presence of fake profiles on the dating app, they created a pop-up catfish food truck in a cheeky nod to the trolling activity of the same name. They were also behind Casper’s The Snooze Bar, an immersive pop-up experience that gives people a break from the conventional showroom in favor of coffee, cocktails, and best of all, naps.
In a radical rejection of the swim-in-your-lane type thinking, this bi-coastal NYC/SF agency is both a creative shop and a full-service record label. Sister company UnitedMasters deals in artist services helping musicians tell their story and get their music out there. If this seems random, it isn’t. The company’s founder, Steve Stoute, got his start in the music industry where he still maintains deep roots.
When major female talent come together under a name that is an homage to great women in history, we get excited.. Started by former Executive Creative Director of Weiden+Kennedy, Jaime Robinson, and Chief Operating Officer of Refinery29, Lisa Clunie, the agency champions Irregular Thinking: delivering bold ideas using unexpected channels. In addition to big-name clients like Coca-Cola, Unilever and Airbnb, they’ve also launched their own publishing brand called Damn Joan, The Joan Foundation for Diversity in Advertising, and in the continuing trend of startup-like businesses, gives every employee a stake in the company.
You wouldn’t think an agency with a Super Bowl ad under its belt would count as a newcomer, but take that as a testament to their creative prowess. Before that, they were the minds behind the Chili’s “Baby Back” jingle that has been stuck in our minds since its debut. They’ve since acquired digital marketing agency Juice Interactive, further bolstering their already impressive capabilities.
Photo credits: Manolo Chretien (top post) and Mike Kononov (bottom post)