Oh look, another end of year wrap up.
Except this one is way better than all the others. That’s what happens when you take a bunch of talented, passionate-about-digital people from a super cool agency and ask them about 2018. Without further ado, we give you a look back on 2018 from the (clearly, very modest) Pound & Grain team.
1. What brand stood out to you in 2018 and why?
Sandy Fleischer, Managing Partner: “Tide. Predictable answer, given its success at Cannes, but “It’s a Tide Ad” was not only an ingenious takeover idea, but also a way to poke fun at advertising, and the trove of ads that take themselves way too seriously in today’s environment.”
Jackson Murphy, Creative Director & Partner: “The Amarillo Sod Poodles. What the what? Yes, an insane rebrand of a minor league baseball team by Brandiose, who are just killing it with these must-have new sports brands. Incredible combination of storytelling and design.”
Wolfgang Botkin, Technical Director: “Arcteryx. I’ve never been exposed to a client with such a high visual standard for their online presence.”
Scott Lew, Creative Director: “Twitch – Video game streaming is finally getting recognition as a legit entertainment genre and Twitch is capitalizing on the trend better than anyone. If it isn’t already, streaming your own gaming experiences will simply be known as Twitching.”
Tyler Lockyer, Managing Director: “Nike. It isn’t abnormal for a multi-national to take a political stand, but to see Nike do that with Kaepernick was inspiring. Should brands have a moral compass? I suppose. It was a far better use of advertising than a product marketing message. Politics is Money, and Money is Business. It seems to make sense.”
Cam Lee, Interactive Lead: “Tesla – their spaceX ventures have really taken off (no pun intended), and they are starting to really drive a new era of space exploration. Plus… honestly seeing Elon Musk hit a giant blunt on the Joe Rogan podcast was easily one of the funniest things I have ever seen.”
2. What was the best use of digital in 2018?
Grant Fraggalosch, Creative Director: “The new P&G website!”
Shane Kelly, Planning Lead: “I thought Woebot (a cognitive behavioural therapy/wellness chatbot) getting $8m in funding was an impressive indication of the potential of chatbots.”
Nick Kewin, Content Specialist: “Netflix again. They’ve likely changed the way that we’ll consume movies forevermore.”
Jackson Murphy, Creative Director & Partner: “Red Dead Redemption 2. 30 hours in, the most compelling digital experience of the year. Like Westworld in game form with less robots.”
3. Netflix owned entertainment this year! If you could have your own Netflix original show/movie, what would it be called and who would play you?
Nick Kewin, Content Specialist: “Sleepy and Hungry, starring Oscar Isaac.”
Jackson Murphy, Creative Director & Partner: “It would be on Hallmark, it would be called, A Very 6 Christmas, and John Goodman. A digital agency has to work over the holidays for some amazing clients doing social media live for a televised holiday bake off. The agency gets helped by a jolly old soul and learn the true meaning of Christmas.”
Scott Lew, Creative Director: “It would be called Keanu House and it would be a reality TV show where Keanu Reeves was my neighbour and my wife and I would invite him over to watch movies on weeknights and take care of our cats when we go away. There would also be a team of hosts that chime in every few minutes to respond to what’s happening on screen (a la Terrace House).”
Tyler Lockyer, Managing Director: “My show would be called Dadlife, and the boom mic operator would play me.”
4. 2018 was the year of Instagram Stories. What are your thoughts on vertical video?
Penny Norman, Planning Director: “I hated them and then I bloody loved them. BUT I do find that they are big toll on influencers. No longer is it the perfect picture on their feed, but a really intimate look into everyday life. At points it feels creepy, especially when my three year old asks “Who are those people, mummy?” and I am like “I have no idea, Florence, but we are looking at them having breakfast.”
Ivana Atlija, Junior Copywriter: “It makes sense for selfie-style videos, but beautiful cinema will always be landscape.”
Scott Lew, Creative Director: “Love it – We’ve been toying around with different video orientations for a while now and I think the adoption of vertical video is super exciting because it’s built into a mobile culture. It’s not like TV, you’re experiencing vertical video in short form and often on the move – really fun to think about where we can take storytelling.”
5. This year we saw the birth of the bezel vs. notch war. What side are you on?
Ethan Sztuhar, Junior Designer: “Team notch – if I can tuck away things like the time and wifi off of the main screen area. Thats a win for me.”
Wolfgang Botkin, Technical Director: “The notch drives me crazy. Death to the notch.”
Andres Navas, UX & QA Specialist: “Bezel. 100%.”
Scott Lew, Creative Director: “I think we all need to stop fighting about this – especially Mark and Graham. It’s making me uncomfortable.”
Penny Norman, Planning Director: “I had a birth of my own kind, I have no idea what you are talking about.”
6. Spotify went public this year! What was your favourite 2018 album drop?
Sandy Fleischer, Managing Partner: “Tirzah’s Devotion was the record I listened to most. It’s very personal, and intimate and totally awesome in its imperfect glory. It R&B that we need today, but sent to us from tomorrow.”
Grant Fraggalosch, Creative Director: “The Midnight, “Kids”.”
Ethan Sztuhar, Junior Designer: “Kasbo – Places We Don’t Know.”
Wolfgang Botkin, Technical Director: “Snotty Nose Rez Kids.”
7. What 2018 trend are you looking forward to ending?
Grant Fraggalosch, Creative Director: “Privacy breaches.”
Kelsey Westbrook, Producer: “That yodelling kid.”
Nick Kewin, Content Specialist: “The floss dance.”
8. What’s one thing you learned this year?
Nick Kewin, Content Specialist: “You’re supposed to peel bananas from the bottom. That’s the way monkey’s do it and they’re banana kings so I trust them on that one.”
Shane Kelly, Planning Lead: “How to assign a Jira back to someone.”
Andres Navas, UX & QA Specialist: “That time does not exist…”
Scott Lew, Creative Director: “I’m glad I live in the real world because my Red Dead Redemption persona is slightly on the psychotic side…”
9. What are your hopes and dreams for Pound & Grain in 2019?
Penny Norman, Planning Director: “Work with great clients, create great work, have fun, repeat.”
Kelsey Westbrook, Producer: “Soup club.”
Tyler Lockyer, Managing Director: “To continue destroying the competition. Delivering great work to great clients. And to ultimately help us and them wade through the confusion of marketing and provide clarity and effective solutions.”
Cam Lee, Interactive Lead: “I hope that we can continue to grow our relationships with our existing clients and make some new ones, while we continue to make highly engaging and entertaining digital experiences.”
Jackson Murphy, Creative Director & Partner: “The same as every year. No midnight launches. Always Challenging briefs. Great clients. New tatics. More Tik Tok. And no lumps of coals in our stockings.”
That’s it for Pound & Grain’s take on the past 365 days. It was a wild year. Who knows what 2019 will bring!