1) This year, the industry continued its trend toward more nontraditional storytelling approaches. Clients are looking for new and inventive ways to engage their audiences, and the lines between science, technology, art and commerce have significantly blurred. Native advertising took a big step forward, as did users’ ability to recognize it and call it out. All of this places more responsibility than ever on our shoulders, as advertisers, to examine the integrity of our work.
2) In 2016, we saw more clients willing to engage in less traditional forms of storytelling. Our Creative and Production offerings are constantly evolving. However, this year, we’ve been able to build on our previous relationships and implement new protocols and strategies that connect the viewer with both the content as well as the context in which it exists. With ever-growing client needs, we’ve spent a lot of time expanding our internal resources to help further reinforce our abilities, as well as a comprehensive Music Department to further increase the opportunities for all our clients.
3) We’ve been very fortunate this year. We were the inaugural recipient of the Agency of the Year award at the Ciclope Festival...A number of our projects and campaigns achieved a high degree of success. Under Armour’s “Rule Yourself 2016” spot featuring Michael Phelps and Hennessy’s “The Piccards” are incredible examples of storytelling, with “Rule Yourself 2016” receiving the Grand Prix for Film Craft at the Cannes Lions. For the debut of the Google Pixel mobile device, we were tasked with producing and launching an elegant and cohesive global campaign that included an incredible body of work, consisting of over 2,300 deliverables, all in two months. With Hennessy V.S.O.P’s “Harmony. Mastered from Chaos,” we married art and technology to create a dynamic film and digital experience that’s built on user interaction. Looking forward, one of the projects that we’re especially proud of is still a secret, which is pretty rare in this industry.
4) In my opinion, there isn’t really a “next big thing” as much as there is a “next big idea.” And that idea will only come from all departments working together in seamless harmony: Strategy, Creative and Production. Because content and context are so intertwined, where we find our creative and production partners, what emphasis we put on which aspects of production and, ultimately, where and how it all gets seen, will be what governs the making of a great idea. When we’re able to perfectly replicate that formula in new and exciting ways—that’s when it becomes the next big thing.