A huge collection of 3400+ free website templates JAR theme com WP themes and more at the biggest community-driven free web design site
Home / Creative Agency Q&A with Movement Strategy’s Jason Mitchell

Creative Agency Q&A with Movement Strategy’s Jason Mitchell


Learn more about what life is like working in a creative agency. Jason Mitchell, CEO of Movement Strategy, shares some of his thoughts on what makes agency life fun, unique and interesting in this quick Q&A with Adstasher.

Tell us a little bit about your agency. What inspired you to start Movement Strategy?

Jason Mitchell: Movement Strategy is a social-led creative agency. We have a team of just over fifty people with offices in New York, Denver and Los Angeles and work with companies like Netflix, Under Armour and Warner Bros.

The agency started through a friendship between myself and Eric Dieter (COO) while we were students at the University of Colorado. We formed a friendship over skiing, always pushing each other to see who could go faster and jump off something bigger - while also sharing classes in the school’s advertising program. As we were set to graduate in 2008 and looked out at the advertising and marketing landscape, we realized there was an opportunity in the disconnect between what they were learning about in school which was traditional advertising and how they were actually communicating and consuming media. This led Jason and Eric to launch their own agency, one that focused entirely on helping companies understand social media and utilize it as a new marketing channel to support their more traditional efforts.

The friendly competition that we had on the slopes translated into healthy competition in business, each working incredibly hard to do as much as possible to move the business forward. I took the lead on new business and Eric led operations. One of Movement Strategy’s first clients was the Denver Nuggets, and they have a great story about pitching the CMO that it would be a good investment to launch a Facebook page!

How would you describe the working culture at Movement Strategy?

JM: We started the company with the knowledge that there were better ways for companies to reach customers and better ways for agency to create a great working culture where we would actually want to work. Today, we still strive for both. We now have a decade of experience helping companies achieve business growth through social media, and the opportunities are only growing as marketing continues to leverage social channels to a greater extent.

Similarly, we know there is still so much work to be done in the agency landscape to create a truly great place to work, especially as more traditional cushy advertising budgets shrink and agencies like ours have sprung up to fill a need to operate in a more efficient and nimble manner. We believe that we can fill our clients’ needs while also creating a great environment for employees where they actually enjoy coming in everyday because they are challenged, supported and get to work with other passionate and smart people.

How big is your team and how would you describe the working dynamic of your team?

JM: We are currently at just over 50 full-time employees. We have a collaborative dynamic across our departments and offices. We know that the best work happens when we are tapping into the various skill sets of our team, and we are constantly doing that across nearly all of the work that we do. Whether it’s our Business Strategy team working closely with our Creative team to ensure the final product really hits on the client ask, or it’s a Community Manager in New York jumping into an assignment in our Denver office because they personally have a passion for the specific campaign.

At the leadership level, we also have a collaborative dynamic. There are five Partners at the agency and decisions are made through all of them meeting on a weekly basis and coming to a consensus. This ensures that we look at all of our challenges through a myriad of viewpoints and collectively get to the best decision. Sometimes this makes it so we aren’t quite as fast, but we have learned for high level decisions is better to be right than fast.

How do you keep your team inspired? How do try to ensure that everyone has the ability to contribute creatively?

JM: We keep people inspired by ensuring everyone has the ability to contribute creatively across the agency regardless of title or experience. Everyone has the opportunity to take on lead roles and be client facing. We have people joining client meetings their first day on the job if they are going to be able to contribute and take away information. We have junior-level creatives pitching our clients if they are the ones who put the concepts together. By giving our employees the opportunity to lead, be client facing and able to take ownership, our team feels inspired to do the best that they can knowing there is no one to hide behind. This also makes it so that everyone is encouraged to contribute, and the best ideas rise to the top regardless of where they come from.

About Abdi

Check Also

Meet Duncan Channon – A Small Award-Winning Agency That’s Growing with the Times


Duncan Channon is an independent, integrated advertising and design agency with offices in San Francisco, Los Angeles and New York. Founded in 1990 by Robert Duncan and Parker Channon, the agency has continued to thrive in the fast-changing world of advertising and has done award-winning work for clients such as StubHub, the Golden State Warriors and Kona Brewing Co. The agency recently acquired award-winning experiential, influencer and digital agency A2G, which brings a dynamic, new roster of creative talent to the agency. Learn more about what makes Duncan Channon unique in this fascinating Q&A with their co-founder and CMO, Parker Channon.


What is the name of your creative agency?
Duncan Channon

Tell us a little bit about Duncan Channon. How did your agency get started? What inspired the founders to start your creative agency?
Duncan Channon was built from humble beginnings, which is why it still feels crazy to think about how far we’ve come. We’ve been an Ad Age Small Agency of the Year a few times over now and have a roster of clients that are household names like SweeTARTS, the Golden State Warriors and Kona Beer. Robert Duncan and I were escaped Foote, Cone & Belding creatives who hung up our own shingle in 1990 – literally working out of a garage. We were inspired to do great things creatively – and to have fun with the people we were working with in the process. We wanted creativity, trust and camaraderie to coexist at Duncan Channon in a way he hadn’t seen at the big agencies we’d come from. Almost 30 years later, we’re still fiercely independent and proud of the close, collaborative relationships we have with our clients and colleagues.

Is there any significance or meaning to your agency’s name?
When we started, every new agency was named after a color, an animal or a number. So, we thought we’d zig when everyone zags. That meant just using our names.

How would you describe the working culture of your agency?
Our agency’s rallying cry for close, friendly and fun collaboration is summed up in our philosophy of “guanxi,” a Chinese business term we discovered over late-night whiskey drinking on a trip to Shanghai. Guanxi says that there is no successful business without a successful relationship first. You have to take the time to get to know, understand and, heaven forfend, even like the people you work with (and for) before you can even hope to make great stuff. We’ve found that deep, trusting relationships and mutual understanding, among clients and staff, lead to more insightful and effective work. And, these internal habits of listening, caring and collaborating are just as important to clients who want to build relationships with today’s highly skeptical and social-media-active consumers. Guanxi is particularly relevant at a time when people want to be seen and understood by brands, not marketed to.

How big is your team now?
We’re now over 80 strong. It’s an exciting time for us. We recently acquired the award-winning agency A2G, who are real pioneers in experiential, influencer and social marketing. A2G created the first pop-up shop for GAP before the term even existed, and found influencers for Nintendo before modern social media was born. As part of this move, we welcomed a new partner and Chief Experience Officer Amy Cotteleer as well as new teams specializing in experiential, influencer and social activations for brands.

How would you describe the working dynamic of your team?

We’re now over 80 strong. It’s an exciting time for us. We recently acquired the award-winning agency A2G, who are real pioneers in experiential, influencer and social marketing. A2G created the first pop-up shop for GAP before the term even existed, and found influencers for Nintendo before modern social media was born. As part of this move, we welcomed a new partner and Chief Experience Officer Amy Cotteleer as well as new teams specializing in experiential, influencer and social activations for brands.
Our working dynamic is all about collaboration and trust. Now, we’re excited to have forward-thinkers like Amy and her team at A2G to help us dream up more big ideas that break into culture and reach consumers online and IRL.

What’s a typical day like at your agency?
We think people love our agency because there’s no typical day. Some of us may be flying to Hawaii for a shoot for Kona Beer, while others are heading to Sacramento to brainstorm new ideas to end the teen vaping epidemic with our clients at the California Department of Public Health. Those of us at the office are working hard, but also working smart. We’re making things, writing things, and talking to clients from varied industries like food, beauty, e-commerce, sports and health. Yet, we make time to eat lunch together in the open, communal café we recently built to create more space to spend time with each other. On Fridays (and some other afternoons), we finish the day with drinks upstairs in The Tip, our agency’s rooftop speakeasy and temple of ‘guanxi.’

How do you keep your team inspired?
We’re a flat organization and believe a great idea can come from anyone, regardless of title or specialty. Rising creatives tell us they have real ownership over ideas and client relationships at Duncan Channon in a way that’s rare at other agencies where ego and hierarchy can constrain creative opportunities.
To be our best creatively, we also believe people need time to live lives and pursue their interests outside of the office – whether it be playing in a band like Kat Michie, our associate creative director, or organizing comedy nights like Davis Wolfe, an account supervisor.

Do you have any advice you’d like give to those looking to start a career in your industry?
Learn by doing. Get in there and go. It doesn’t matter where you went to school if you can start making things right away. The ramp from copywriter or designer to creative director can be short if the work and hustle is there.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *