Indie index

Wasserman & Partners Advertising...

Wasserman & Partners Advertising

Y2K billings: $30 million

Employees in Vancouver: 48 (including agency, design studio and interactive division)

Key clients: Savings and Credit Unions of B.C., Westminister Savings Credit Union, Whistler Blackcomb Mountains (AOR), Intrawest Corp. (AOR), B.C. Rail, Singapore Airlines, Whitespot Restaurants, Chevron Canada, London Drugs, Registered Nurses Union of B.C.

Number of accounts: 20

Latest attention-getting campaign: TV spot for Registered Nurses Union of B.C. featuring a military-style planning session on how to keep nurses in B.C. One of the many drastic suggestions to stop the hemorrhaging is to seal up the borders. Then one planner suggests simply paying the nurses what they’re worth – an idea that seems to not have occurred to the others in the room.

What sets the agency apart from the crowd: ‘We’re always looking for that one critical point where the consumer’s deepest desire meets the best aspect of a brand or a product. That’s really a mix between creativity and strategy. We work on that intersection between logic and magic.’

Rethink

Y2K billings: Billings not available; Rethink’s clients spent about $35 million on media in 2000.

Employees in Vancouver: 30

Key clients: A&W Canada, Dominion and A&P food stores, Earl’s restaurants, Mountain Equipment Co-op, Yves Veggie Cuisine, Maclean’s magazine

Number of accounts: 15

Latest attention-getting campaign: A&W has just re-launched Chubby Chicken, their chicken fare from the 1960s. Rethink is producing national TV, outdoor and radio ads.

What sets the agency apart from the crowd: ‘We believe advertising can’t just be hard sell – it has to have some kind of entertainment value to it as well.’

Big House Communications

Y2K billings: not available

Employees in Vancouver: 14

Key clients: Pepsi-Cola Western Canada, Whistler Blackcomb Mountains (project work), Intrawest Corp. (project work), Infowave Wireless, Institute of Chartered Accountants of British Columbia, Canadian consulate in Seattle, Science World

Number of accounts: 10 to 15

Latest attention-getting campaign: Produced a campaign for the human resources department of Burnaby-based Infowave to help them recruit and keep high-tech workers in Vancouver. Called ‘Wire Stoppers,’ the campaign is themed around Crime Stoppers concept, with anyone who refers a successful hire getting a $1,000 reward. Ads were placed in non-career sections and in mainstream publications, such as the Georgia Straight and the Seattle Stranger, as well as in restaurant bathrooms.

What sets the agency apart from the crowd: ‘Television is primarily a lean-back media – you sit back, you grab your chips, you click the channel changer. We work to make all of our creative have a lean-forward effect. It interests people, it makes them sit forward and take notice.’

Glennie Stamnes Strategy

Y2K billings: Billings not available; revenue was $3.7 million.

Employees in Vancouver: 38

Key clients: Toyota B.C., Ethical Funds, Elections B.C., Rogers Video, Big Brothers of Greater Vancouver, Manitoba Hydro

Number of accounts: 15

Latest attention-getting campaign: Glennie Stamnes’ ads for Ethical Funds have garnered international awards and a CASSIES award. The agency recently ran a number of stark print ads in newspapers across the country. One such ad featured a shot of a little boy’s leg. The top headline reads: ‘Running to school.’ The bottom line: ‘About to step on a landmine.’

What sets the agency apart from the crowd: ‘We really get involved in our clients’ business. We help them build their businesses, we’re very focused on in-store programs, community programs, fulfillment. We’re not just about doing the ad and buying the media.’

i2i Advertising & Marketing

Y2K billings: $4.7 to $4.8 million

Employees in Vancouver: 6

Key clients: Subway restaurants in B.C.; Valleybrook Gardens; the CHILD Foundation

Number of accounts: 8

Latest attention-getting campaign: i2i won an international creative award (Summit) for one of a series of print ads for the CHILD Foundation, which helps children with colitis, Crohn’s disease and liver problems. The winning ad features a pile of razor blades and pins, to depict what it can feel like when a child with a digestive problem eats simple foods like ice cream or a hamburger.

What sets the agency apart from the crowd: ‘We have a total open-door environment where we are able to have access to everybody at all times and we’re able to sit down and talk about stuff whenever we want to.’ NC