Best Large Agency (over 100)← Go back to category
We Are Social
We Are Social
Nov. 14, 2013
- Large Agency
Team members: Robin Grant - Co-Founder, Nathan McDonald - Co-Founder, Leila Thabet - US Managing Directorq
About this entry
Last year, We Are Social celebrated its fifth birthday. In these amazing five years, we’ve grown from our two founders and their laptops to a global agency, with eight offices across five continents. Here are just some of the highlights from 2013:
Growth: Our team grew 25% to over 450 employees globally, making us one of the largest independent agencies in the world - and we achieved a huge 96% increase in turnover to $38m globally.
Our Work: We've had global success for our campaigns, including Paris' Tweet & Shoot for BNP Paribas, which has already picked up eight awards since November last year, including two prestigious Eurobests and five Cristals.
People: We hired top talent globally from some of the world’s biggest agencies, boosting our strategic and creative offering to clients.
Clients: We’ve won new business from some amazing clients all over the world this year; Beats by Dre, Panasonic, Mondelez, Nivea, Red Bull and Nokia to name but a few. We also saw huge organic growth as confidence in social media grows.
New Services: We launched our paid media service, our most significant development in recent years. By bringing paid social media expertise in-house alongside the social content creation and community management teams, we are uniquely placed to drive better results for clients.
Recognition: We were one of just three agencies recognized by AdAge's 2014 International Agency of the Year, selected as a runner up. We also picked up Best Large Agency at the Social Media Communications Awards and took the no.1 spot in PRWeek's Digital Top 50.
Plus a lot more. This year, our New York office turns two years old, with our numbers tripling in 2013 to a staff of 50, with newly-landed clients such as National Geographic Channels, Reebok and Beats by Dre. It’s safe to say that 2013 was a huge year, and we’re headed for even bigger and better things in 2014.
The case for why this entry should win a Shorty
Why do we deserve a Shorty?
We’re proud to be social
We Are Social was created because we thought the communications industry wasn’t keeping up with how social media has changed the way people consume media. The method of a top-down approach, where brands talk “at” their consumers rather than “with” them sounded pretty old to us, so we found people with a unique mix of digital, PR and marketing skills to create a new kind of agency.
We’re not a tradigital agency that’s tacked-on a small social media team or a PR agency where social media is an afterthought; we’re built from the ground up specifically for social media, designed to help brands listen, understand and engage in conversations online.
Our thinking paid off. We’ve seen growth financially and in the impact we’re having on the wider marketing landscape. We’re increasingly seeing clients embrace social media as the ‘lead’ discipline in their marketing mix.
Many of our clients are now considering social as fundamental to their marketing plans, in some cases placing it right at the center. Our vision is to continue this and deliver more work that is led by social media across a larger group of global brands.
We work with the best brands… and do the best work
2013 was a huge year for We Are Social. We helped the world train world-class tennis player Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in a groundbreaking social media first via our “Tweet and Shoot” campaign for BNP Paribas. The campaign, which celebrated the bank’s 40-year partnership with The French Open, picked up three prestigious Eurobest Awards.
Tweet & Shoot also swept the board at the Cristals, with a massive five awards. London’s Wimbledon Wiggle for evian and Heinz: Grow Your Own also picked up another three Cristals.
Heinz Grow Your Own also triumphed in the MiAwards, along with We Are Social itself. Here we picked up the Agency Grand Prix, Social Media Agency of the Year and Managing Director of the Year for London MD Jim Coleman. And this was just on the back of picking up Best Large Agency at the Social Media Comms Awards!
A few other notable award wins last year were our Munich office winning the Social Media Strategy category in the HR Excellence Awards for Siemens: The Manager’s Call, recognition in the APAC Branded Entertainment Awards for our Sydney office with Kia: #smartsolutions and a very sought after Lovie Award for our Milan office’s Sky X Factor campaign.
We also grew our longstanding relationships and established new ones. We started working with amazing brands like Beats by Dre, Panasonic and Mondelez. This boosts our already diverse list of clients, which now includes adidas, Heinz, Heineken, Lenovo, Jaguar, Unilever, Beats by Dre and Expedia.
We’re global... and growing
Our global offering now consists of offices in New York, London, Paris, Milan, Munich, Singapore, Sydney & Sao Paulo and we’re still expanding. Inter-office knowledge sharing means that every member of our staff is connected on a world-wide level to maintain or exceed our internal high standards of quality on a global level.
We extend that same opportunity to our clients, providing them 24-hour support on global and local levels for any of their social initiatives, with inter-office partnerships to maximize each office’s strengths. We’ve seen successes this year by leveraging our footprint for clients such as Hyatt, Lavazza and Lenovo.
In 2013 we celebrated some amazing results, 100% derived from social media marketing, as our global turnover increased a huge 96% to $38m.
We hire the best people
Today, our employee headcount is over 450 worldwide, with 130 in our UK HQ and 50 in the USA. We’ve brought together specialists with knowledge and experience in social media, but literate in marketing & communications theory, strategy and account management – blending the right skills with the right attitude.
From music bloggers to fashionistas to PR superstars, we’ve always focused on drawing the best talent from across the social sphere to ensure we’re at the top of our game, and we pass that knowledge on to our extensive range of clients.
We hire the best people, do the best work and have fun doing it. We’re social by nature, with parties, annual ski trips, festival tickets – our commitment to people and our company culture means we’re a happy bunch!
We have strong leadership
Co-founders Robin Grant and Nathan McDonald continue to lead the agency with support from Managing Directors in each office, including Leila Thabet who leads our US offering. This year saw some significant new hires that support our strategic direction on a global level.
We’ve brought on board some new talent to help manage the huge growth of our US operations. including Grace Gordon as Strategy Director, Ben Arnold as Group Account Director and Nicole Ghobrial, who moved from our London to New York office in the role of Client Services Director.
In London, we hired the UK’s most awarded creative team of 2012 as creative directors, James Nester and Graham Jenks, as well AKQA’s Elie Adamson as Client Services Director and Dare’s Lucy Doubleday as Operations Director in our UK headquarters.
What’s this all mean?
In short, we deserve to win the Shorty Award for Best Large Agency because we ARE social. We're committed to putting social thinking at the center of marketing, creating ideas that people want to share and talk about, get involved with and belong to.