Adding to Our Merritt Group Trophy Shelf
A Note from Jayson Schkloven, SVP & Partner
Merritt Group has been around for almost two decades, but the addition of Creative Services to our repertoire officially happened in 2008. Since then, we’ve grown the Creative practice to become a sizable part of our business; working with some major names in government and technology.
So last year, our Creative Director, Julia Sarver, persuaded me to attend the 2014 DC Ad Club “Addy Awards” at the 9:30 Club to see what other creative agencies were up to.
While we were there I made two observations:
1. There is a TON of fantastically creative talent in DC
2. Merritt’s creative work could stand right alongside the winning entries on display
So, right there in front of the stage at the 9:30 Club, I issued a challenge to my creative team at Merritt - “Next year, I want to see our work win us an Addy so it can be on display right here with the rest of the top creative firms in DC.”
Throughout the next year, our designers produced a lot of amazing pieces for clients (see them here on our Behance site) but when it came time for our holiday party, we wanted to have a little fun.
The creative team, led by our Creative Director Julia Sarver, came up with a witty, eye-catching and somewhat irreverent campaign that really caught the attention of our staff and built a lot of excitement and anticipation leading up to our holiday party at Ping Pong Dim Sum in Dupont Circle.
Apparently, it caught the attention of this year’s DC Ad Club judges too because, out of more than 600 entries from 80 different agencies and organizations, the Merritt Holiday Party Campaign won us our first Addy! And while this year’s award ceremony wasn’t held at the 9:30 Club, our work looked just fine on display next to the other winners at the Almas Temple on K Street.
Congratulations to my amazing and talented Creative Team here at Merritt Group.
A Note from Julia Sarver, Creative Director
It isn't everyday that you get to develop creative deliverables that incorporate sake bombs and toilet signs. But when it came to promote our 2014 Merritt Group Holiday Party we wanted anything but typical!
When developing the campaign that won us an Addy, we took our inspiration from our holiday party venue, Ping Pong Dim Sum. The campaign encompassed ten individual pieces including signage, invitations, posters, menus, directional cards, and even branded chopsticks. Aiming to convey class and sophistication, we opted for a black and white color scheme with subtle hints of the MG red. The invitation and signage highlight our secondary script font (No. Seven, for you typophiles), which juxtaposes quite nicely with our primary font Gotham. For the posters, we went for minimalism, making sure nothing detracted from the copy.
The invitations kicked off the campaign, welcoming staff back from the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. Each invite was personally screen-printed by our multi-talented Graphic Designer, Kerianne Condon, with a customized set of chopsticks secured inside.
Jayson Schkloven and Calin Gunn were the crack team of copywriters who provided plenty of “edgy” one-liners that stretched the limits of corporate appropriateness for the posters and location-specific signage.
This campaign was a fun and engaging way to pump up our colleagues and ramp up excitement for the party. It also gave us an opportunity to test our creativity without limits and boundaries (well almost none). .
Winning our first Addy award is the icing on the cake...or rather a sprinkle of wasabi on our dim sum!