Since My Agency was appointed by Russian Standard Vodka in 2008 our 'Vodka as it should be' campaign has helped the brand become the world’s number one premium Russian vodka and the “Fastest Growing Vodka Brand” in the top 30 global vodkas by volume (Drinks International 2013). In the UK Russian Standard has grown at +45% in the UK Off trade (MAT end May 2013) vs. the vodka category at -2% MAT and is now the UK’s number two best-selling vodka, out-selling Absolut. The campaign is now running in 27 markets around the globe.
Our latest ads feature the Emmy Award-nominated U.S. filmmaker, futurist and performance philosopher Jason Silva. The campaign explores the incredible convergence of science and nature, craft and technology, history and revolution that make Russian Standard so ultra pure and delicious.
The films were created by My Agency’s Creative Director Luke White with Jason Silva, production company Great Guns and UK post-production company Mainframe. The films utilised the talents of directors Calum MacDiarmid, Jean Poisson and acclaimed US director Ron Fricke, best known for the ground-breaking documentary films Baraka and Samsara. The campaign launched at an exclusive event on 11th November at London’s Science Museum, where Jason Silva delivered an awe-inspiring address on how patterns in the natural world are being re-imagined in science.
“My Agency has delivered the big advertising idea Russian Standard have been looking for and we are thrilled to bring the energy and excitement of My Agency’s creative to our consumers”
Director of Communications
Russian Standard Vodka
Since we set up My Agency we've always worked with entrepreneurial start-ups, creating new business and brands. In 2011 we created and launched a high street stationery retailer called blott, which we also part own. blott is a celebration of fun, colourful products for the young and not so young. We created the brand and ranges, designing over 1,000 individual products. We also designed blottshop.com and launch marketing materials. Since the first blott opened in Tunbridge Wells in 2011, we have opened 13 blott shops around the UK and aim to open another 3 stores in 2014.
Encona is the UK’s number one hot pepper sauce brand, with a loyal fan base in the UK's Caribbean community. My Agency was appointed to take the brand on to TV for the first time, to help the brand reach a wider, audience and to show off the range of flavours. The creative features real Encona fans and the idea poses the question: "Hot or sweet, which are you?”. It playfully shows some of the ways Encona helps people to banish the taste of bland food with its range of 12 different hot and sweet sauces. The ad also features a distinctive ‘eefing and iffing’ soundtrack.
"This is a big step for us and My Agency really captured the brand's personality, working tremendously quickly and collaboratively with us to make this campaign happen."
‘Keep up, Join in, Time Out’ is our new global theme for the ultimate insider guide, inspiring readers to get the most out of the planets coolest cities. Since the end of 2013 we have been working with Time Out as its lead strategic and creative partner, helping the media group develop a global brand strategy and creative to grow the brand across digital channels and international territories.
Working closely with the publishers in-house team, My Agency has created an array of brand assets and multi-media comms, from B2B presenters for Time Out’s sales force to integrated campaigns promoting specific aspects of Time Out’s offering, like encouraging UGC on timeout.com, users to download the Time Out app, sign up for Time Out Offers or purchase individual city guides.
Yandex is Russia's leading technology company and Russia’s number one search engine. However Yandex was beginning to be challenged by Google particularly amongst younger users who were drawn to Google’s empowering and friendly image. Yandex appointed My Agency to create a brand campaign to give Yandex a warmer and more engaging personality. Our integrated 'All Life’s Answers' campaign ran in Russia, Ukraine and Turkey and used Yandex's iconic yellow search bar to give life to Yandex’s mission to answer any questions internet users have.
'All Life’s Answers' pushed Yandex search figures to 60.7%, a 12 month high, stealing back users from Google, reconnected existing users and created hundreds of thousands of new users. Within days, fans of the campaign started creating their own versions and uploading them to sites like Yandex Video and YouTube. There were more than 5,000 Tweets and hundreds of thousands of online views.
Welch’s Purple Grape Juice is an iconic brand in the USA, but had low awareness in the UK. Welch's appointed My Agency to create a TV and print campaign to create standout and sales in a saturated market. ‘Packed with Antioxidants’ hi-lighted the fact that Welch’s has twice the antioxidants of orange juice by making characters out of Welch’s antioxidants who cram twice as many of themselves into a glass compared to the antioxidants in a glass of orange juice.
While other premium branded juices declined, ‘Packed with Antioxidants’ achieved dramatic growth for Welch’s Purple Grape Juice, doubling sales and becoming number 1 for advertising awareness among juice brands. The campaign ran for 4 years in the UK and the TV ad was also used in the USA and China.
“Welch’s Grape Juice is +11% in volume for the latest 12 weeks. A phenomenal performance vs. most brands. This growth is being driven by strong advertising (#1 in advertising awareness among juice brands). Without this campaign our sales would definitely be in decline. My Agency deserves an award.”
UK Marketing Director
This global print and poster campaign for Grant's Premium Whisky uses intriguing visual metaphors to describe the whisky's complex layers of flavour. Grant’s 12 has been a big success in emerging markets such as Russia and Latin America where sales have outperformed competitors and the brand has enjoyed rapid growth. It's now being rolled out in Europe and selected markets.
Over the five years we worked with Grant's the brand consistently grew ahead of its category. In 2009 it became the 4th largest whisky and in 2011 Grants became the world’s 3rd largest Scotch whisky, with sales up by 12% to 4.9 million cases. Alongside volume gains, Grant’s now commands a more premium price and the value of the brand's increased to over $1 billion. Awareness has risen dramatically, in the UK the brand's achieved its three-year objective in just six months.
Yandex, Russia’s leading search engine, asked My Agency to help them launch a new web browser, targeted at desktop users and in particular Russian language users of Google Chrome. Our TV spot for Yandex Browser presented a contemporary image for Yandex and contrasted the simplicity of using Yandex browser with the hugely complex task of making it. Shot in Yandex’s Moscow HQ, the ad stars the computer geeks who actually created the browser.
The launch of Yandex Browser was a huge success in Russia, with over 1,000,000 downloads within the first few days. The daily usage of Yandex browser reached 2,500,000 unique users across the course of the campaign.
The brief was to create and launch a new kind of luxury casino. A cool Las Vegas-style casino where gaming was only part of the entertainment experience. A place that appealed to existing gamers and people who didn’t go to UK casinos - affluent young 'urban explorers' looking for new social experiences. Everything about the brand was designed to make it appealing to women as well as men. The brand we created, Manchester235, was brought to life using the language of gaming, the language of numbers. The creative idea combined this with a promise of an experience that was ‘Predictably wonderful, wonderfully unpredictable’. Pre-launch advertising intrigued people with the promise of an unusual and exciting experience without being completely explicit that the venue was a casino. The design team at My Agency designed and executed the brand across every consumer touch point. We even got to choose the cutlery in the restaurants!
The Launch was London Clubs International's most successful casino launch with 12,000 pre-launch registrations and 23,000 more members in the first few weeks. Importantly 30% of the membership was female, the first UK casino ever to achieve this level.
“My Agency is the one stop marketing shop. The whole package. From in-depth and thorough insight and strategy, unique and spectacular creative solutions and ideas, to perfect media choices for every budget. I can’t thank them enough.”
London Clubs International
This hugely successful global campaign was conceived as an integrated 'Pepsi Challenge' for vodka. In contrast to other brands, who concentrate on style over substance, 'Vodka as it should be' highlights the authentic and superior quality of vodka created by adherence to traditional and rigorous imperial Russian vodka standards. The campaign has run in 27 markets around the globe and grown Russian Standard’s sales by 34%, making Russian Standard the Fastest Growing Vodka Brand in the top 30 global vodkas by volume (Drinks International 2013). In the UK Off trade Russian Standard is +45% (MAT end May 2013) vs. the vodka category at -2% MAT. Russian Standard now outsells Absolut in the UK and is number two behind Smirnoff. In duty free, Russian Standard is now the number three best-selling Vodka.
"My Agency have been crucial to the growth of delivering both exceptional brand positioning work and creative execution. Their 'Vodka As It Should Be' advertising campaign is now a proven equity and sales driver in 20+ key markets globally. Nick and Luke lead their team from the front and have showed strategic consistency, resilience and determination at every stage. And of course they are also great fun to work with!"
Russian Standard Vodka
This huge project was to create and launch the first Las Vegas style boutique casino in London. The brief, within a highly restrictive regulatory framework, was to create a luxury brand that appealed to a new audience of potential casino goers, men and women. The size and aspiration of this casino and the top Las Vegas casino designer who created it, promised a treat for fans of glitz and glamour. This provided the theme for our creative idea – A touch of Vegas in the heart of London - transforming familiar aspects of central London into something more fun and colourful with the Vegas touch.
Within days The Casino at The Empire became the hottest ticket in town. 35,000 members joined within six weeks, a figure it would normally take six months to achieve. Attendances hit 1,800 a night with an average spend per head of nearly £200.
"Luke is one of the most talented creatives I have worked with in my career in terms of creative output and joined up thinking. My Agency provided a strong integrated solution and worked seamlessly with our core development team including operations and contractors."
London Clubs International
My Agency's strategic & creative work helped Grant’s grow from number 5 to the world's 3rd best-selling Scotch whisky. Aimed at whisky drinkers who want to move beyond badge brands, our campaign focused on the traditional way Grant’s is made, its unique brand story and the more rewarding and complex drinking experience of the whisky. The integrated 360˚ advertising and marketing campaign, invited drinkers to ‘Try a different angle’ and discover a richer whisky experience.
Over the five years we worked with Grant's, the brand consistently grew ahead of its category. In 2009 it became the 4th largest whisky and in 2011 Grants became the world’s 3rd largest Scotch whisky, with sales up by 12% to 4.9 million cases. Alongside volume gains, Grant’s now commands a more premium price and the value of the brand increased to over $1 billion. Awareness has risen dramatically, in the UK the brand achieved its three-year objective in just six months. My Agency also helped Grant's successfully launch its premium 12 year old blend.
“Everyone at Grant’s has been impressed by the passion, commitment and the vision for the brand presented by My Agency. Everyone there really gets how to extend the campaign across the marketing mix.”
Global Brand Director
BE Broadband was the first company in the UK to offer super fast broadband, but it launched just as slower 'free' broadband was becoming available. Unlike BT, Talk Talk or Sky, BE only did fast broadband. We felt this was BE's strength. It could stand for something: Broadband Experts, appealing to the committed community of early adopters who believed broadband was the force to unleash a new world of communication, collaboration and creativity. Our simple creative vehicle made the company logo into an avatar, giving BE personality and a campaigning attitude against its faceless competitors.
Our cross media, integrated communications programme doubled subscriber numbers for three straight years and maintained BE's premium price, despite the availability of free broadband. BE’s user community was the most active of any ISP in the UK, with over 30% of its members regularly contributing to their forum. BE’s fans took to the campaign straight away and were soon creating their own avatars to interact with the brand. BE won ISP of the year and was eventually sold to O2 for £50 million.
“It was clear right from the pitch that My Agency immediately understood our brand and business objectives and has subsequently operated as a key partner to help build our business. My Agency have offered invaluable strategic insight into our audience and defined a unique positioning and brand personality for Be Unlimited. They have also delivered highly creative and innovative advertising solutions through the line, acting as brand guardians and responding with admirable flexibility to our needs as they developed.”
Our brief was to drive trial of two variants of this Czech premium beer in the UK and Sweden on a miniscule budget. The origins of Krušovice date back to 1517 when the brewery was founded in the Czech region of Bohemia, the heart of the Czech brewing tradition. In 1581 it was bought by Emperor Rudolf II and has been supplying the kings of Bohemia ever since. This back-story helped inspire our campaign line – Brewed for Kings - a reference to the brand’s origin and a promise for today’s ‘kings’ of the bar. The campaign idea places the two products – Imperial and Cerné – as competing princes striving for the throne. The communications ask bar tenders and drinkers to taste both, take sides and choose one driving both both trial and advocacy.
Once the UK's 3rd largest selling drink, SunnyD became the 4th most hated brand after it was revealed it contained loads of sugar and palm oil. Stories about children turning orange after drinking too much didn't help much either. SunnyD was sold by P&G and the new owners crowd sourced a group of real mums from over 2,000 applicants, to help completely reformulate the product. New SunnyD was now all natural, but could Britain's mums forgive it?
To give mums the confidence to buy it again, we decided honesty was the best policy. PR used the mum's from the Parent's Advisory Group to tell the story, while print and radio used the negative preconceptions of the brand to tell the story of how it had been radically reinvented. TV which was aimed at mum's and kids, dramatised the role mums had played by making mum a hero, defending new SunnyD from the bad old ingredients, who wanted back in. Millward Brown scored the advertising in the top 5% of campaigns they pre-test. Sales are 15% up year on year, despite a nearly 50% price rise.
Before we started My Agency, we created very successful adverting campaigns for some of the world's most famous brands. The 'Latin Spirit in Everyone' campaign, created by Luke White, was one of the earliest cross media campaigns and ran for 5 years in 15 markets around the world. In the UK alone Bacardi Breezer grew to a brand worth £500,000,000 a year in sales and reignited the all but dead alcopops market.
The idea behind the campaign was based on the notion of dual personalities. It drew a parallel between Bacardi Breezer which looked colourful, sweet and innocent on the outside, but was actually quite strong containing a shot and a half of Bacardi rum (the Latin spirit) and people who in their day time persona outwardly appear to be responsible and conservative, but are really wild part animals at heart.
'Tomcat' took the original 'Latin Sprit in Everyone' campaign in a fresh and totally integrated direction. The campaign featured a cat who was an old lady's cat by day, but demonstrated his Latin spirit by becoming the 'Prince of Cats' by night. Tomcat became a star in his own right and the brand reached even greater heights in sales, winning many awards including the UK's 'Advertising Campaign of the Year' in 2002.
My Agency was appointed to create a national campaign to recruit over five thousand foster carers across the UK. The campaign incorporated national advertising with a comprehensive toolkit of creative assets for local authorities to use. We undertook in-depth research which revealed that Word-of-mouth from existing foster carers is the most important factor for recruiting new foster carers. We listened to how these fans ‘sold’ fostering, not tugging the heart strings with messages about disadvantaged children, but getting people to recognise in themselves qualities that make a great foster carer. This became our campaign platform.
'The Recognise the Qualities you’ve got' campaign was launched to coincide with the UK’s national Foster Care Fortnight. It was the most successful recruitment drive ever with 175 fostering services taking part. The campaign reached 28 million people, helping to inform the public about fostering and to recruit a new generation of foster carers. Four out of five fostering services saw an increase in the number of enquiries about fostering and in the first three days alone the helpline received over 600 calls from potential carers.
“My Agency’s response to our brief showed a deep understanding of the challenges and a passion for solving them. Thanks to all My Agency’s work we’ve had our best 'Fostering Awareness Fortnight' ever.”
The Fostering Network
Russian Standard wanted a credible and authentic alliance with music and film. My Agency were tasked alongside PR and activation agencies to create an unrivaled brand experience to reward Russian Standard Vodka drinkers and to attract new drinkers to the brand. The 'Russian Standard Originals' programme provides consumers with access to a free world of original music and iconic film accessed via a privilege card, available on promotional bottles and at Russian Standard events. The programme was launched in May 2010 with sponsored gigs featuring bands like the Noisettes and Plan B, which were also shown on C4. In August the first Russian Standard Vodka Originals Film Festival, in collaboration with Empire Magazine, saw iconic films playing in luxury cinemas right across the country.
Our client had a great product idea – a kind of Red Bull on an edible strip, which allows caffeine to go directly into the blood stream for an instant energy hit. My Agency was asked to create a new brand. Everything from the name, brand identity, packaging, point of sale, website, trade marketing materials, and advertising.
Every brand needs a story for the fans to believe in and share. We created the story of Koru, a word which derives from the Maori word for energy. The Koru brand became an explanation for their incredible physical effervescence. The iconic brand imagery was a seamless blend of traditional Polynesian tattoo art and comic book graphics that fitted neatly into the surfer/skater world of Koru’s intended fans, students and those burning the candle at both ends. The icon was designed to provide a simple platform to connect all forms of communication, but it also had a very practical use in that it showed consumers how to use the product, by placing it on their tongue.
Orient Global, the ethical developing world investment fund run by billionaire Richard Chandler, asked My Agency to create a brand for a chain of new low-cost private schools to be launched in India. With an enriched curriculum, improved infrastructure and innovations to the existing system such as teacher training and computer laboratories, the private schools would offer low-income parents a quality education for their children for just $5 a month. Our brief was to create a brand that came from the East, not from the West, as is often the convention in private education in the developing world. A brand that would appeal to often-illiterate parents and also be credible at the United Nations and Davos.
Our solution Rumi, is named after the 13th Century Persian poet who travelled the Silk Road from East to West bringing eastern thinking to different cultures. Rumi believed in the evolutionary growth of the human spirit and universality, values at the core of Orient Global. The simple visual identity of a mother elephant and calf was inspired by Orient Global’s own logo. The identity had to be simple enough to implement by hand, and went from inception to the side of our first school in just two weeks. Since we completed the work, Rumi has expanded rapidly, bringing high quality, private education to thousands of Indian children.
BlueVia is the brand we created for Telefónica. A global platform for developers to take mobile apps, web services and ideas to market via a total application development ecosystem. Giving developers free access to Telefónica network APIs and access to thousands of real Telefónica users to test apps before launch. We worked with Telefónica’s R&D department in Barcelona for over two years, helping define the UX, site architecture and creating all the front end design.
We also created the launch event for Bluevia called 'The Power of One <11.11.11>' The event held on the 11th of November of 2011, the last binary day of the century. It was held at Battersea power station by Carsonified with inspirational guest speakers from the development community.
“We’ve been working with My Agency for three years on major projects for both O2 and Telefónica. They have been an invaluable strategic and creative partner, delivering great work across a broad range of deliverables from UX and design to branding and promotion.”
Head of Developer Marketing
Telefónica - BlueVia
Marie Curie Cancer Care asked My Agency to create a number of projects to support their fundraising and volunteer programmes. The fundraising events like 'Bike the Baltic' and 'The Blooming Great Tea Party', aimed to attract participation and sponsorship. The 'Volunteer Programme' formed a series of low budget campaigns for recruitment drives to get more people to look after collection boxes on the street, use their administrative skills to sort donations, run the annual events or give up a few hours of their spare time to help run one of Marie Curie Cancer Care’s charity shops. The bold, simple, unified graphic look that My Agency developed across the campaigns, gave the charity a way to link all of its different activities and to use its existing visual assets to much better effect.
The dramatic increase in new M.A.C stores and concessions around the UK required localised communications to generate targeted footfall and sales. My Agency created a radio campaign to support the opening of 27 stores, each commercial tailored to a new location. The second phase of the radio activity – again adapted to each individual location - provided a new reason for customers to visit by promoting a range of products not normally associated with M.A.C - the Naturals Range. The radio campaigns were aligned to the flamboyant image of M.A.C, but were bespoke to the UK. The positive call to action central to each radio message helped generate sales uplift of up to 70% across UK stores. The naturals range alone achieved a sustainable sales increase of 22% in selected regions.
A series of simple and clean print ads for Krušovice Imperial which play off the brand's regal heritage, but add some taste appeal.
AMD Vision is a new generation of accelerated PC technology, designed to enable the world's most vivid and immersive digital experiences. To reflect this step change in computing AMD asked My Agency to look at refreshing their overall brand identity. The brief however was not to totally reinvent the brand, but to find a way to evolve the existing brand utilising the AMD arrow logo. Our solution (which was only partially adopted) was a simple visual system using the AMD arrow as a window to showcase a 'vivid moment', the immersive experience for the end user of AMD's technology.
Our approach incorporated HDR photography, which adds depth, colour and clarity to an image making it seem hyper-real. The result is an intense, graphic, HD look and feel. The idea of 'vivid moments' is reflected in headlines that call out the benefit of digital experiences enhanced with AMD technology.
Elixir is a new online bank service from Russia's B&N Bank. It was created as a modern alternative to Russia's old fashioned banks and promises a service that is quick, safe and always available. Elixir offers Russian's quick access to credit via technology that can approve an application within 60 seconds. A new and exciting way to make people's dreams and aspirations come true. The brand name and visual identity, created by design company Lothar Böhm, is a fluid (Elixir) that can transform people's lives. Our brief was to launch Elixir using the identity to ensure consistency and prominence to the fledgling brand.
While the identity is striking and very unusual in the Russian market we felt that Elixir needed a simple product proposition to drive response. We believe that credit is hard to sell to people who don't need it, but a credit provider who makes the process as quick and easy as possible is something of huge interest to the millions of people seeking credit from the existing slow and unhelpful banks in Russia. Our strategy focussed on the 60 second promise and used Elixir's brand ID to create visual impact.
Having successfully established Welch’s Purple Grape Juice as a rich source of antioxidant's, Welch's asked My Agency to create a new, more emotional campaign for the UK. To help further drive awareness of Welch's commitment to goodness, the campaign was to focus on Welch's pure and unique Concord grapes and the family farmers who for 140 years have grown them. We identified a key fact, that every glass of Welch's contains over 40 grapes. The idea is expressed in the line 'A Whole Bunch of Good' and the TV ad features a young family having fun picking Welch's grapes by hand. The TV ad also features Welch's new look packaging which embodies the Whole Bunch of Good idea.
After two years at the top of the publishing sales charts, independent publisher Quercus Publishing approached My Agency to help them revive the stalled sales of the successful Steig Larsson 'Millenium' series of books, beginning with 'The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo’. Alongside a big push in supermarkets, Quercus asked us to develop a TV ad to appeal to an audience who only buy a few books a year, in particular a male audience. The ad combines the success of the book and the dark nature of the story itself to dramatic effect.
"I haven’t yet had the chance to thank you all more informally, but on a personal note all the team have been great to work with, and I’d like to pat all backs concerned."
The received wisdom is that fostering is a vocation. Whilst this is true – carers love fostering – they also understand the reality that it is a full time job. Fostering is not glorified babysitting but actually a highly skilled profession. Few fostering organisation have the vision or the resources to recognise and support fostering as a career option. This is where St Christopher’s is different. We chose to position St Christopher’s as offering the most professional service to the most professional careers. We developed a fully integrated messaging programme designed to raise awareness of our aim to remove the barriers currently preventing the 'professionals in spirit' becoming 'professionals in practice'. We called this the STEP programme: Support. Training. Ethos. Package. Showcasing St Christopher’s new corporate look and feel, we created a complete 'campaign in a box' covering everything from initial demand generation to materials that would be used to help applicants through the long and arduous clearance process.
My Agency’s challenge was to develop a creative vehicle and flexible graphic device for a promotion that could bring Russian Standard Vodka's premium credentials to life across every consumer touch point. ‘Meet the Russian Standard’ positioned Russian Standard as the curator of Modern Moscow’s dynamic and vibrant culture and included a competition to win 90 VIP trips to experience it first-hand. The campaign included media partnerships, sampling and merchandising in 200 top end clubs and bars, and promotional activity across all off-trade retail channels. We created and implemented the stylish graphic, based on the idea of 24 hectic hours in Moscow, across advertising, POS and brand engagement materials. Our assets were also utilised by activation partners i2i's experiential team and Bauer Media. The campaign generated over a million consumer contacts and helped Russian Standard Vodka become the UK’s number 2 selling vodka brand behind Smirnoff. The campaign was also rolled out across other global markets.
The Royal Parks Foundation are responsible for the up-keep, preservation and conservation of the eight Royal Parks. Our brief is to create awareness for the Foundation and the sterling work they do keeping the parks so beautiful and enjoyable for Londoners. This cross-track London Underground poster we created for the Foundation, comparing the lives of commuters and squirrels, was the runner up in the CBS Long Copy Challenge. We also created online content for their website encouraging people to sign up for the Royal Parks Foundation Half Marathon, which featured a first person view of the amazing central London course.