Let’s be clear here. We’re an advertising agency. We make things that surprise and delight the world. But our focus is also on helping clients tackle their hairiest business problems, not just their advertising challenges.
We’re about people first – the best talent teamed with the bravest clients. We don’t have a hit list of brands we want to go after. Instead, we have a list of people we’d kill to work with, again or for the first time.
We’re looking for courageous souls and fearless thinkers more interested in making history than repeating it, all in pursuit of work that both drives business results and leaves a dent in culture.
Rick and Hunter are responsible for making sure that every person in the company understands that they play a creative role, and all have a responsibility in helping to craft the world-class executions they produce for clients.
Their partnership began 10 years ago at Goodby, Silverstein & Partners in San Francisco. Rick had moved from New York and Hunter from Dallas to work on the +HP campaign. Over the next decade, they’ve never looked back, splitting time between GS&P and Wieden+Kennedy Amsterdam.
At GS&P, their responsibilities included helping to run HP, both during the “+HP” effort and “The Computer is Personal” Campaign. For Frito-Lay, they shepherded Doritos’ Crash The Super Bowl (now in its 7th year) and Hotel 626 (widely regarded as one of the most innovative digital efforts of the 2000’s). Under their guidance, they grew the Frito-Lay business from just Doritos to a portfolio including Cheetos, Fritos, Tostitos, Ruffles and Rold Gold. They ran the Chevrolet account. And they pitched and won Dickies, TD Ameritrade and Cisco, repositioning each of those brands with dynamic integrated campaigns. During their tenure, GS&P won Agency of the Year three times (twice in AdWeek, once in AdAge), Digital Agency of the Year at Cannes, and Agency of the Decade in AdWeek.
At Wieden+Kennedy Amsterdam, they pitched and won Coca-Cola’s global business, launching “The Coke Side of Life” campaign with the widely awarded “Happiness Factory” entertainment property. The campaign ran in 191 countries and was adopted and built on by every region. During their two years abroad they also helped launch Nike+ in Europe.
Throughout their time together, they’ve won lots of awards (Cannes, The One Show, Art Director’s Club, D&AD, Epica, AICP, etc.) and their work has regularly appeared in both the international and domestic press. They’ve made a bunch of Super Bowl spots for many different clients. They were named two of the top 20 creative directors worldwide by Creativity magazine, while also twice winning Campaign of the Year honors in the same publication. Further, they were awarded International Campaign of the year by Campaign magazine and received the prestigious Vision award by the New York Art Director’s Guild.
Together, they have a collective 36 years of experience as creatives.
They also share an irrational love of automobiles. Hunter’s obsession runs much deeper, and is much more costly than Rick’s, but the education continues.
As President of ARGONAUT, Jordan wears many hats including agency development, business management, and client services. But his real passion is working with clients to get at the heart of their hairiest business problems.
The son of an entrepreneur, Jordan’s been starting businesses since he was 9-years-old. So after getting an engineering degree and an MBA from UC Berkeley and spending 8 years client-side at IBM, he longed to return to his entrepreneurial roots.
In 1994, Jordan left IBM to start the Internet marketing practice at CKS, where his team created the first digital efforts for clients including MCI, Visa, General Motors and Levi’s. An early evangelist of Integrated Marketing, Jordan quickly rose to General Manager of CKS San Francisco, adding responsibility for the agency’s traditional marketing services. There he had a career-defining experience when Steve Jobs returned to Apple in 1997 and tasked his office with re-imagining the Apple brand– from the logo to the packaging to the in-store design to the Web site.
Seeking to do the same thing for other brands, Jordan left CKS in 1999 to start his own agency, Eleven. As President and CEO, he helped build a culture around tackling marketing problems from every angle for companies like Disney, Microsoft, Shutterfly, Williams-Sonoma and San Francisco Tourism. He also led the creation and development of Kodak’s consumer digital brand, EasyShare, taking them from dead last to the top-selling consumer digital camera in the world.
In 2007, Jordan decided to try big agency life and was charged with turning around Agency.com’s West Coast operations. As President, he brought together experts from all disciplines of advertising to deliver innovative solutions for brands like Apple’s iTunes, Ask.com, eBay and Nike. Recognizing that he was transforming the role of a digital agency, Omnicom supported him in his next entrepreneurial endeavor, rebranding Agency.com San Francisco as Signal to Noise.
After 20 years of starting and building San Francisco-based agencies, it’s safe to say ARGONAUT isn’t Jordan’s first rodeo.
He lives in Tiburon, where he can usually be found on a ball field coaching his two boys.
As Head of Creative Technology and Production at ARGONAUT, Robbie is charged with creating connected experiences that are a mash-up of film, art, interactivity and physicality. Luckily for us, that's exactly what he's been doing for the past 13 years. He’s been head of integrated production and creative technology at Chiat/Day, Draftfcb and indie agency Duncan/Channon among other shops. But unlike many others who have held similar titles, Robbie actually knows how to code and make all sorts of awesome prototypes. We call him our secret weapon.
While at Chiat/Day in Los Angeles, he led digital production and creative technology for Nissan, Pepsi, Visa, Gatorade, Method and more. He was one of the go-ahead minds behind both the Pepsi Refresh Project and the digital content juggernaut that was the “Mission G” re-launch of the Gatorade brand. He also led the innovation teams on Nissan, building experiences that used bleeding edge virtual platforms and augmented reality executions. And for the “Visa Small Business Network," he helped market the first social media platform that celebrated and connected budding entrepreneurs. He was also involved in some of Apple’s earliest digital efforts.
He then moved on to become Head of Integrated Production at Draftfcb in San Francisco, where he managed work across all mediums. He was a part of the team that concepted and produced Levi’s/Dockers social media “Wear the Pants Project” as well as Electronic Arts’ “Mass Effect” release, a 3D, first of its kind effort that was acclaimed in the industry.
Robbie is also the co-founder of several technology startups, including a multiplayer online video game company, a mobile e-commerce platform and a peer-to-peer clothing sharing initiative called Double Dutchery, which he launched with his wife, Wendy (also an entrepreneur).
He lives in Berkeley with his family and loves to geek out at Maker Faires.
Having no silos when it comes to strategy makes for smarter, more holistic work. As Head of Strategy at ARGONAUT, Max brings an integrated approach to problem solving that few agencies can mimic. He spent the last decade at Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, mastering every aspect of the strategic arts: media buying, media planning, communication strategy, and brand strategy. His ability to work across all strategic disciplines is unique in the industry: he's as happy being swaddled in creative briefs or wrapped up in media plans. He grunts quietly when he's thinking hard, which is often.
During his 10 years at GS&P he was recognized across the strategic spectrum (Effies, Media Lions, David Oglivy Awards, Jay Chiat Awards, Creative Media Awards) for work on clients such as Frito-Lay, NBA, eBay, Kayak.com, and Foster Farms. His past experience includes clients such as Saturn, Hyundai, Elizabeth Arden, Got Milk, Häagen-Dazs, Dreyer’s, Google, Comcast, Sonic Drive-In, Nickelodeon, Cheetos, Doritos, Tostitos, and Fritos – all of the –itos, actually. It’s fair to say he’s an –ito expert.
Max lives in San Francisco with his dog Meatball.
Developing the right chemistry with current and future clients is Conal’s passion. As Head of Business Development, he helps clients by listening hard to the problem at hand and then casting the right talent for the task at hand.
15 years ago, with a fresh marketing degree in his left hand and a surfboard in his right, Conal boarded an Aer Lingus flight from his native Ireland to San Francisco in pursuit of the American Dream. Or at least the Irish version of the American Dream – to surf in the Pacific Ocean.
He began his career in San Francisco where he quickly rose through the sales & marketing ranks of Humanscale, which was then a small industrial design company. In his 7 years there, he helped grow the company into a leader in their industry, playing on a global stage.
Feeling he needed a new venture, Conal decided to move to Barcelona in 2003 (with his brave new American bride Heidi) and succumbed to the entrepreneurial itch. He was involved in a number of business ventures, including owning and operating restaurants (that still operate today).
He subsequently returned to San Francisco (which he can safely now say is home), where he joined the team at Agency.com to lead business development, forging new relationships for Agency.com with brands such as Apple, Nike, AMC Theatres and Franklin Templeton, among others.
As luck would have it (he is Irish, after all) the timing of the launch of ARGONAUT coincided with Conal’s thirst for yet another adventure. And it didn’t require a move to another continent.
He now lives in Marin with his wife, an ex-rock ‘n’ roll journalist, and their two boys.
As Head of Brand Management, Katie is responsible for re-imagining how ARGONAUT approaches the client/agency relationship. Her passion for creating trusted relationships that lead to groundbreaking work is infectious. She is tireless in her dedication to both our growing agency and our trusted clients, always pushing both to get world-class work that delivers world-class results.
Prior to joining ARGONAUT, Katie ran TD Ameritrade, Sonic Drive-In and Frito-Lay at Goodby, Silverstein & Partners.
For TD Ameritrade, she oversaw three major re-branding initiatives: the Long Term Investor-targeted “Financial Storytelling” campaign, the fully integrated 2012 Olympics brand campaign, and the Elite Trader-targeted thinkorswim campaign. Together, these efforts helped transform the brand from being known for the “Law & Order guy” to one that was more human and trusted, generating measurable business results that surpassed yearly open-account goals.
On Frito-Lay, Katie ran the $120 million all-natural effort to promote the 'better for you' transformation of the Tostitos, Lays and SunChips brands. This campaign successfully shifted brand perceptions, while also resulting in a Guinness World Record for “most number of Facebook fan likes in 24 hours" within Zynga's Farmville platform.
Prior to Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, Katie oversaw the Kellogg’s kids cereal business at Leo Burnett in Chicago. There she managed the strategy and development of the first-ever Super Bowl spot for a kids’ cereal brand (via the Frosted Flakes Plant-a-Seed initiative) and helped reverse a decade’s worth of sales declines for Kellogg’s Corn Pops by leading an Effie award-winning campaign that overcame perceptions among tweens that the cereal just tasted like corn.
In her spare time, Katie likes to play the guitar, tickle the ivories, and, also, she eats enough red meat to compensate for the surplus of vegetarians in San Francisco. (She’s from Kansas.)
As Head of Culture & Talent, Maura oversees all aspects of our agency life here at ARGONAUT. Leading everything from staffing & recruitment to agency events and operations, she keeps a hawkish eye on our growing agency. Her principle responsibility is making sure that as we grow, we are making thoughtful choices that will further the growth and development of our people.
A former Account Director, Maura understood the ARGONAUT vision from day one and after several months of leading the agency’s early accounts, we knew that there was no one that would be more perfect for this vital role. She has been an instrumental part of our growth and her passion for the agency is contagious.
Before ARGONAUT, Maura spent four years at Goodby Silverstein & Partners, as the Global Account Director across various brands in the Frito Lay portfolio including Doritos, Cheetos, and Ruffles. Prior to that, she held account leadership roles on iconic brands such as Pepsi, Pepsi Max, and The GRAMMYs, at TBWA\Chiat\Day\LA , and Volkswagen at Crispin Porter + Bogusky.
Maura lives in San Francisco where she can be found trying out any and all hot workout trends or rewarding herself with a mimosa brunch.
Posted August 14, 2014
How do you prove that Appleton Estate couldn't come from anywhere other than Jamaica? Part love letter and part documentary, we created a film that captures the vibrancy of the people, the island and the process that makes this premium aged rum so unique. We're still looking for excuses to go back.
Posted August 1, 2014
Why make a commercial for the launch of a brand new wireless company when you can create a whole new world? For Cricket Wireless we created an integrated campaign that debuted with this happiness-filled film, introducing both a whole new service and a world full of fun-loving characters.
Posted January 29th, 2014
What better debut for an agency than a Super Bowl commercial? When Volkswagen came to us with the little known fact that they've got the most cars on the road over 100,000 miles, we decided to spread our wings and have some fun with it.
Posted March 5, 2013
ADWEEK: August 12th, 2014
Jamaica's Appleton Rum Gets Gritty in New Ads The 265-year old estate shows off people, pride, rum barrels - The budget-friendly rum category doesn’t have many choices liable to leave the buyer feeling like he’s just bought something artisanal... See full article
New York Times: January 30th, 2014
High Stakes for Agencies, and Products, at Super Bowl - On Sunday, the stakes will be high for the sponsors of Super Bowl XLVIII, but for some the stakes are higher than for others.... See full article
FAST COMPANY: January 28th, 2014
VW Takes an Angelic Turn for the Super Bowl - ARGONAUT was awarded this high-profile job after being invited to pitch on VW’s return to the Super Bowl... See full article
ADWEEK: January 21st, 2014
Volkswagen Pledges to Put Everything You Love in One Super Bowl Ad For science - If you like puppies, bikinis, babies, dinosaurs, pirates, Carmen Electra and Abraham Lincoln, then have I got the Super Bowl ad teaser for you... See full article
New York Times: March 5th, 2013
San Francisco’s Thriving Agency Start-Up Scene - PEOPLE in the advertising business need not head to an amusement park if they feel like riding a roller coaster. All they have to do is... See full article.
The Huffington Post: March 13th, 2013
Your Start-Up Business: Mixing Up the Business Model - I first saw Robbie Whiting in 2012 at South by Southwest, where he gave a daring presentation on the death of advertising agencies... See full article.
Adweek: March 5th, 2013
Goodby Alumni Launch ARGONAUT in S.F. New shop is backed by Project Worldwide - Meet ARGONAUT, the latest San Francisco agency to be launched by alumni of Goodby... See full article.
SF Egotist: March 5th, 2013
Meet your newest SF agency - ARGONAUT. - There's a new agency in town - ARGONAUT. It includes ECD team Rick Condos and Hunter Hindman from Goodby, Silverstein & Partners... See full article.
Yahoo! Finance: March 5th, 2013
New Advertising Agency ARGONAUT Launches. - Creatives Hunter Hindman and Rick Condos Join With Industry Veteran Jordan Warren and Team to Build New Model... See full article.