Small Agency Awards 2012

Small Agency of the Year, Southwest, Silver: Proof Advertising

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When Bryan Christian and Craig Mikes bought Austin, Texas-based Kolar Advertising & Marketing in 2010, they took a look at the agency and figured out what needed to be tweaked. For starters, they renamed the shop, which was founded in 1989. Proof Advertising is meant to be an "idea distillery." Its motto, "Nothing watered down," completes the booze theme.

Proof touted Subway as a healthier option for parents and kids in ads, and helped drive dinner sales up 4% during the campaign's run.
Proof touted Subway as a healthier option for parents and kids in ads, and helped drive dinner sales up 4% during the campaign's run.

To fulfill the "nothing watered down" standard, the agency changed a number of aspects of the shop. For instance, Proof dissolved the department and made digital expertise a required skill. Because the shop wants its 95 employees to be happy, Proof began instituting "inspiration days." Employees get $50 from the agency to take two days off per year to spend the day doing whatever inspires them.

Proof's clients include Security Service Federal Credit Union, 3M, San Antonio Convention & Visitors Bureau and Hyper Wear. The shop's notable work includes spots for Subway, wherein the shop was tasked with generating sales for the chain's kids meals -- a challenge in a category that is dominated by Happy Meals. But the shop touted Subway as a healthier option for parents and kids in the ads, and helped drive dinner sales up 4% during the campaign's run.