Creativity: The force behind a successful agency.

Just Do It. This world-renowned slogan was conceived by Dan Wieden in 1988 at a creative meeting with the athletic company “Nike”, and served as a pivotal breakthrough for Wieden’s career. In the twenty years since its conception, Wieden has become the co-owner of Wieden+Kennedy, one of the largest independently owned Advertising agencies in the world. Based out of Portland, Oregon, Wieden+Kennedy (W+K) is consistently recognized throughout the marketing world for its creative and memorable ad campaigns, which include those for “Old Spice”, “Microsoft”, “Coca-Cola”, and of course, “Nike”. W+K has gained awards and recognition from publications such as AdWeek, AdAge, and Creativity for being the most prominent and influential agency in the industry.

If you are interested in working on a creative team for Advertising or Marketing, W+K might be the place to live out your dream job.

just do it ad


W+K prides itself on their creativity and the unconventional methods that alternative agencies lack. Not only is W+K well-known throughout the industry for conducting noteworthy campaigns, they are also known for the unique offices that serve as the home front for this creativity. The W+K offices have an unconventional style of interior design that makes it a great space for the young and creative employees to well . . . create! This quote from Weiden himself is representative of just how significant creativity is to W+K:

Our most valuable assets as individuals and agencies and society is our ability to lead a creative life and a life that can not only adapt to change but that can influence change.”

wieden office

The IFC series, Portlandia, satirizes the hip atmosphere of W+K in one of their episodes. For a light-hearted take on the company’s image, check out the clip below!


These offices have housed some of the most recognized campaigns seen today. “The Man Your Man Could Smell Like” was developed by W+K in 2010 as a campaign for Old Spice, a Male grooming company whose target audience is clearly men. The campaign, which houses the tagline “Smell like a Man, Man” was an immense viral success and has gained exposure on YouTube from over forty million people. The Ad received an Emmy award for Outstanding Commercial in 2010 and won the prestigious Grand Prix at the Cannes Lion International Advertising festival.



The employees at W+K do not limit their creativity to their Advertising campaigns: In recurrent blogs on the W+K website, each employee expresses ideas and advice for their readership. These blogs offer updates, insights, and “behind the scenes” glimpses into what exactly the creative process entails at W+K. This approach generates a more personal relationship between the consumers and the agency, as opposed to larger agencies that place more emphasis on monetary gain and less on the interconnection with their viewers. By giving the consumer an inside look to the company and its creative process, W+K has gained a loyal following of Advertising enthusiasts who seek inspiration from their successful campaigns. To learn from the experts themselves, click here.



W+K is an ideal employer for creative thinkers who seek a collaborative, open-minded work environment that yields positive relationships with both clients and consumers. As Portlandia jokingly suggests, the culture of W+K is for those who consistently convey an excitement for new and innovative ideas. In light of his success, Dan Wieden has advised all creative teams in the industry to not be afraid to fail. What do you all think? Is W+K the right place for you? Is this Advertising agency to eccentric and unconventional? Enlighten us with your thoughts!

-Jami Rogers

5 thoughts on “Creativity: The force behind a successful agency.

  1. I think that this agency really focuses on creating memorable campaigns. Almost every one you listed, I could easily remember seeing it. So many advertises have become generic and overdone, however W+K goes out of the box and takes chances, which are successful. I love how they include “Advertising enthusiasts,” because it is something rare; many companies end up hiding their behind-the scenes processes. If I wanted to go into advertising, I would definitely have W+K as a top contender because I would be able to really be creative and enjoy creating campaigns that are fun and fresh.

  2. I think the success of W+K is primarily due to it’s unconventional and eccentric marketing tactics. I personally would fit right in. The ads mentioned were so successful because they were memorable to the viewers, whether it was because they were comical, straight-forward or out of the ordinary. They left a lasting impression. When consumers go to select a particular item (like say, deodorant), I bet the Old Spice ads come to mind fairly quickly for anyone who has seen the commercials. In a way, the minds behind M+K have mastered the art of planting the seed of need/want long before the consumer reaches the actual store. Some may perceive their approach to be too much, but the majority has spoken. I wouldn’t change a thing and salute them for being so bold in their marketing.

  3. I really appreciate creativity and how certain brands that have more creativity tend to capture my attention. As an art minor I have to be creative in everything I do, and that creativity doesn’t stop with my minor it creeps into all parts of my life. I hope that I will be able to utilize that creativity to be more successful with my com degree. I think W+K has an awesome working atmosphere and I think it would be awesome to work for these guys and be able use my art creativity in a real world setting. I think that the workplace environment W+K sets for it’s employees is crucial in why they are so successful.

  4. I think that this agency would be an amazing place to work at. Not only would you be surrounded by some of the most creative people in the world of advertising, you get to work at a place that pushes creativity as its main goal. I remember seeing those “Smell Like a Man” commercials and thought they were the most amazing things I have ever seen. They were funny, creative and got the point across of trying to sell the product. Seeing all the companies that they have as clients, I would say that they are doing extremely well because I have purchased a large amount of the products in which they advertise for. I do not believe that they should change anything that they need to change a thing in their advertising efforts because what they have been doing is working.

  5. It’s good to see an agency that breaks away from what the others are doing and have been doing for decades. They’ve generated memorable ads and that’s rare. The Old Spice ads were different and have started a trend that others have followed or even copied.

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