Hotwire likes Heat, names us AOR.News

Ad Age snagged the scoop on this one*. We’re proud to share that Hotwire, the online travel discount site, selected Heat to be its creative AOR. We teamed up with media powerhouse UM to win the business and created a value prop that Hotwire found irresistible.

Heat President John Elder shared, “Hotwire is the type of brand challenge that Heat lives for: passionate, strategic clients making smart product improvements to enable more people to travel more often. We have the opportunity to tell the Hotwire story in a surprising way to break though the commoditized OTA category, and by partnering with UM, we know we’ll be reaching the right audience in innovative ways.”

The win underscores our continued growth. Expect more from us in 2015.

*OK, full disclosure: we gave them the news.

Madden antics called out as “best of” in 2014.News

The ad industry likes to do year-end reviews, “best of” lists, and “top 10” trends. With Madden Season throwing down the gauntlet in 2014, we were quite pleased to see it finish the year out on top.

The Madden GIFERATOR won fans’ hearts – and became one of the most searched for GIFs on the internet. Google released its “Top GIFs of 2014” with Madden occupying spot #4.

Adweek called out EA as among its top 10 for “Brands That Nailed Social Video in 2014.”

CNET reporter Chris Matyszczyk shared his thoughts on EA and Madden Season in his “Year in Tech Ads” round-up:

I found myself entirely beguiled by an insane thing it released to launch its latest “Madden” game. Featuring Kevin Hart, it was an ad, a movie and an expectoration of sudden confidence.

And we got called out by an industry peer, David Kolbusz, the ECD of Wieden+Kennedy New York. David shared his green-eyed envy with Campaign Magazine:

“I don’t typically get jealous of other peoples’ campaigns. I tend to be grateful and celebrate when my contemporaries put something brilliant out into the world because it pushes our industry forward. Great work inspires clients to buy great work. There was one thing this year, though, that hurt. Heat’s work for Madden NFL 15 — specifically, Wayne McClammy’s “Madden Season” film — was a bit of long-form content that had me squirming with every twist and turn. From the way the “Dave Franco’s House” title is introduced at the beginning, the Robyn-esque chanteuse belting out absurdist lyrics, through to the “blah blah blah” rap breakdown, every moment of this piece had my green-eyed monster stirring. There wasn’t a second that didn’t feel fresh, which is an incredible feat considering how hackneyed the “music video ad” has become.”

Happy New year, fine folks. It was a good one for us, and for Madden.

We’re hiring.Jobs

Heat is a creative agency that believes in the power of surprise to solve problems, build brands, and turn ordinary customers into raving fans. We’re currently looking for a Public Relations Manager to own the agency’s media relations and assist with executive and internal communications. This role will be the hub of information for all major agency news, both internally and externally. The person in this role knows exactly what’s going on and when; who to talk to—both inside and outside the agency—in order to make things happen; and is comfortable talking about the agency to anyone, in any capacity. This person will work with internal stakeholders to draft and secure placement of any and all agency press. This person will also work on acquiring speaking engagements and written thought leadership opportunities for both Heat executives and senior clients. The ideal candidate for the Public Relations Manager is comfortable in a variety of communications roles including one-on-one, on the phone, written, and speaking in front of others. He or she provides support to the Director of Marketing and will be a champion of the Heat brand.


Media Relations:

  • Define and manage a media relations strategy to help build the agency’s reputation through media coverage, events, awards, and speaking engagements.
  • Foster relationships with reporters and media publications, both inside and outside the advertising industry.
  • Secure press and earned media for the agency, our work, and our clients.
  • Create a consistent pipeline of media coverage.
  • Execution of materials to fill the media coverage pipeline, including press releases, bylines, and any materials relating to agency or campaign news; including client specific industry news.
  • Facilitate approval of media outreach materials between agency leadership, and client services team.
  • Ownership over Heat’s social media channels, working with the social media team to create content that is meaningful to an audience of prospective clients and talent, as well as current employees.
  • Run weekly meetings with agency leadership to report on progress, opportunities, and results.

Executive Communications, Internal Communications, and Agency Awards

  • Work with Director of Talent to foster clear internal agency communications, both to new hires and long-term employees.
  • Work with Executive Team and Agency Directors to create regular team-building events.
  • Work with Director of Marketing to strategize and execute executive communications initiatives, both inside and outside the agency.
  • Facilitate and manage opportunities for Heat’s agency leaders to secure speaking engagements, both within the advertising community and for business development.
  • Develop a plan to manage and curate client and executive experiences at industry events.
  • Manage submissions for client and agency-related industry awards; connecting award submissions with judging and speaking opportunities at each show.


  • Bachelor’s degree required.
  • Minimum of 3 years agency experience in a communications or public relations role.
  • Clear and concise written and verbal communication that is well organized, logical, and persuasive.
  • A portfolio of success pitching and developing relationships with reporters and media outlets.
  • Strong ability to multitask and adapt to change.
  • Good sense of humor and a fun-loving, work hard/play hard approach.
  • High-level proficiency in MS Word, PowerPoint/Keynote, Excel, and social media outlets.
  • Knowledge of Cision, or other media databases a plus.
  • Ability to learn new technologies and platforms quickly a plus.


La Crema and Interview partner to make a statement.La Crema, ,


When La Crema asked us to elevate their brand, we found the best way to do that was to elevate their customers: women.

With the help of Andy Warhol’s Interview Magazine, we captured the real conversations women have with one another over a glass of wine, and amplified them to audiences in print, film, and digitally, worldwide.

We connected successful icons, like actress Gretchen Mol and ballerina Misty Copeland, with aspiring women just beginning their own journeys to making their lives a statement. The results were pretty amazing, check it out.

Sketchy Claus: Santa gets naked for goodness’ sake.News

Sketchy Claus is the tale of that fateful night Santa came to town to bare all for charity and prove his existence to an entire generation of cynical grown-ups.

A few weeks before Christmas, we invited Bay Area artists, creatives and clients alike to rediscover their belief in the Prince of Christmas with an enchanted evening of life drawing.

Over 70 unique portraits of Kris’ Kringle were created on the night, the very best of which were put up for auction on eBay.

So far the event has raised over $2,000 for local San Francisco charity One Warm Coat, proving yet again that charity work doesn’t have to be dull.

The event has been covered in MediaPost, AgencySpy, and the SF Egotist.

Check out the film here.

Elder and Stoney get kudos. From their moms.News

Our moms love Heat.

Hosted by the SF Egotist, Marilyn Stone and Jacqueline Elder have a good chit-chat on what 2014 held in store for us as an agency. Highlights include being named a “Best Place to Work,” fish guts, and EFFIE recognition.

Get acquainted with Marilyn and Jacqueline here.

And go call your mom.

Brands: Entertain your consumers on Black Friday.News

“Black Friday is an event. It’s social and communal, and most importantly, it can entertain shoppers…. entertainment value now matters as much as the deal when it comes to driving sales.”

Heat’s Managing Director Mike Barrett shares his perspective with Campaign Magazine about consumers’ online shopping habits on Black Friday and Cyber Monday, and what brands should be thinking about to capitalize on changing behaviors.

Read the full piece on Campaign here.

Fried chicken sushi? Why not?Weebly, ,

Weebly came to us in July and said they needed a spot on the air in September. Being problem solvers who are always up for a challenge, we said “no problem.” Going from zero to on-air in sixty days is one thing, standing out among other do-it-yourself website building companies that outspend Weebly 10-to-1 is another.

In a category that tends to talk about price or ease-of-use, we thought that trying to connect with consumers in an emotional way would be a fresh approach. We created a shiny, new anthem TV spot that celebrates ideas – ideas that deserve to have great websites to call home. By positioning Weebly as champions of ideas, the spot doesn’t just raise awareness, but also develops a brand personality that stands out in a market filled with companies who tend to all look, and speak the same.