News

The two lovable locals that anchor Kona Brewing’s Dear Mainland campaign are about to hit the court and the big time in a series of new spots running for the first time nationally during this year’s March Madness.

After gently correcting us hapless Haoles in markets on both coasts, the brothers are ready to tackle all of the Mainland. Expect to see them throughout the tourney, including featured spots in all Elite 8 games, along with showings in the Final Four. We even dusted off an old chestnut for the National Championship because of its reference to Monday.

In a down beer market, Kona continues to outpace the category with significant growth over the last five years, thanks, in no small part, to two locals with a simple reminder: One life, right?

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Today marks the release of DC’s first campaign for InnovAsian since being named agency of record. The four 15-second spots use rhymes that play with the catchphrase “InnovAsian occasion” to help consumers better remember the brand when navigating the crowded grocery freezer aisle.

The spots will run nationally on TV stations in 20 markets and on social media. As part of the media strategy, two 15-second spots will run during the same commercial break — separated by other marketers’ ads — to reinforce the rhyming message and drive recall.

The Japanese e-commerce giant dropped its first ever North American campaign during last night’s Grammy Awards. Directed by acclaimed Israeli duo Vania & Muggia (check out their vids for Coldplay and DJ Snake), the TV introduces Rakuten as a premium lifestyle brand for savvy online shoppers.

The work is just the first public piece of a months-long, ground-up brand overhaul that saw DC helping to determine how the brand expresses itself in every dimension, including strategy, style guidelines and even the product itself.

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Oh, it’s happening alright: the new campaign for freshly IPO’d Upwork launches this very morning and portrays an experience familiar to us all in the workaday world: the “oh shit, how am I going to get this done?” moment when an ambitious goal or daunting project lands on our desk. In a colorful, quirky world that’s hip to Upwork’s freelance platform, managers transform their nagging anxiety into the thrill of making things happen. The creative aims to raise awareness of the ability to hire freelancers online as Upwork seeks to disrupt traditional hiring models that can be too slow for the modern pace of business.



For yesterday’s midterms, a big chunk of DCers added the title poll worker to their already sparkling resumes. Spearheaded by our own J. Moe who worked the polls in 2016, employees volunteered for training and were assigned to precincts across the Bay Area. The persuasive Ms. Moe even convinced the crotchety old partners to pay for the time off, striking a blow for democracy everywhere. And the fine folks at MediaPost were kind enough to cover the effort.

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After arm-twisting, haranguing and even shedding the occasional tear, DC finally convinced the multi-talented John Kovacevich to join us full-time as executive creative director. John comes to us us after three years as one of the city’s most sought after freelance talents. Before he broke up with the agency world, John worked at Goodby, Silverstein & Partners and FCB West. So how did we get this confirmed bachelor to tie the knot again? Better if we let him tell it: “5 Reasons I Hung Up My Freelance Shingle to Go Full Time.”

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As the world-champion Warriors tip off tonight for what will be their final season at Oracle, DC drops a campaign that acknowledges the 47 years of Dubs teams running the floor in Oakland and the loud and loyal fans that were there all along.

In outdoor, digital and broadcast, the “Game Recognize Game” work celebrates the franchise’s legacy through novel pairings of Warriors — old-school and new — playing in perfect sync across a continuum of time.

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“The fans know that before the Splash Brothers, there was Run TMC. And Manute, Sleepy, Baron and Barry,” said Parker Channon, co-founder of DC. “Seeing a Warriors super team built across generations feels like a genuine gift to long-time fans and a natural fit for a team that routinely acknowledges the work and history that precedes their accomplishments today.”

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DC’s design director, Jennifer Kellogg, had this to add: “Bringing the Game Recognize Game idea to life visually using nearly 50 years of photography was a fun challenge. We were intentional about treating the photography to make players from different decades feel like they’re in the same world, on the same court. And the Game Recognize Game type reflects off itself to convey this sense of appreciation and interaction between generations of players and fans.”

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With pre-season underway, our Purpose Practice Director, MJ Deery, recommends some serious changes to the NFL’s playbook in Adweek.

“Today’s consumers, especially younger audiences that represent the sport’s future, expect brands to stand for more than product and profit. Yes, even sports teams need values beyond winning.”

MJ goes on to share her POV on four things we should learn from the NFL’s missteps.

1. Consumers have no tolerance for lip service — In January, the league announced its “Let’s Listen Together” program, an $89 million seven-year initiative to support social, education and criminal justice reform, only to undo it with its anthem actions. Such a seismic shift between words and actions can call question to the NFL’s authenticity.

2. Brands must make room for diverse voices — Business leaders need to tap diverse perspectives across race, culture and gender in their workforce or risk sounding tone deaf.

3. Purpose requires the long game — Forward-thinking business leaders aren’t bandaging short-term injuries like the ratings drop and the president’s disparaging tweets at the expense of long-term brand health.

4. Attempts to silence voices often amplify them — Players took to Twitter to re-up their commitment to the cause. And owners like the New York Jets’ Christopher Johnson said they’ll cover fines for players who continue to kneel.

“The NFL anthem saga shows the perils for brands navigating our purpose-driven economy without clear, inclusive values. That said, the NFL still has time to make good on its promise to “Listen Together” and to use the league’s influence to fight systemic racism in a way that builds their business. I hope the NFL finds its way back to its social purpose, by the dawn’s early light.”

See MJ’s full article here and get yourself educated.

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