Blockchain non-profit Tezos Foundation taps Huge as agency-of-record
Blockchain non-profit Tezos Foundation has appointed Huge as its agency-of-record without a competitive pitch process.
Tezos Foundation is a non-profit supervised by the Swiss Federal Foundation Supervisory Authority with the sole purpose of funding activities for the overall promotion of the Tezos blockchain and brand, which was first launched in 2018.
Huge will be collaborating with Blockhaus, a newly created marketing and communications organization focused on the Tezos ecosystem. Together the two companies will accelerate Tezos’ marketing efforts including brand identity, integrated marketing, creative, event activation, partnerships, marketing innovation, and PR.
“In a previous role, I actually went through an RFP process with quite a few agencies and Huge was one of them. It didn't pan out, but I still remembered the process very well and Huge had always stood out in terms of capabilities, and I made a mental note if I ever needed an agency,” says Mark Soares who was recently appointed chief marketing officer of Blockhaus. "They were the first and only agency I called up once I was brought on to this role.”
The partnership will be focused on targeting blockchain developers, which are people who compose projects, apps, and more using blockchain technology, and the users who are “mainstream adopters who most likely are discovering blockchain because of NFTs,” Soares says.
“We need help in the branding and positioning to set Tezos apart from the competition because there's a tremendous amount of noise in the market,” Soares tells Ad Age. The blockchain industry is "highly adversarial, highly competitive, and it moves very fast. In the short term, we'll probably focus on NFTs. Although there's a tremendous number of other things that blockchains are really about and can do, NFT's have really captured the momentum right now.”
Matt Weiss, president of Huge, says the major difference in approaching a blockchain client’s needs compared to any other client is the type of team that Huge has built to take on the account, and the speed at which the team will be required to operate and adapt. Including external specialists brought on by Huge, there are 15 total team members dedicated to the account.
“There isn't a single point of contact, it's actually many points across the chain where you have to engage. We've brought in technologists and strategic planners with an expertise in technology who also understand blockchain and to some degree NFTs and crypto,” Weiss said. “We also have a project management team that has worked in these fast-moving environments, traditional brand creatives, UX, experience designers, and we have a whole tech team who are going to be looking for different ways that we can actually assist and promote ways to build products on the chain as well.”
Tezos, which has a native cryptocurrency, XTZ, markets itself as a pioneer of the Proof of Stake design which is a more energy-efficient model than the Proof of Work networks like Bitcoin and Ethereum. Tezos consumes over 2 million times less energy than Proof of Work networks, according to a statement by Huge. A number of brands and artists have begun building on Tezos. Late last month it was announced that Red Bull Racing Honda, a Formula One racing team, agreed to a multi-year technical partnership with Tezos to build the team’s first-ever NFT fan experience and overall platform. Companies like Ubisoft and French financial services giant Societe Generale, have also agreed to partnerships with the blockchain.
The NFT space has been a hot topic among brands as of late. In March it was reported that a Taco Bell NFT called the “Swivel Taco,” was on sale for $187,000 after the brand sold it for $2. Tezos Foundation isn’t the only one in the space to seek agency help recently. Over the last two months, Coinbase tapped The Martin Agency and Wavemaker as its creative and media AORs, respectively.
Huge has some familiarity with blockchain already. In December the agency helped Verizon launch “Full Transparency,” a blockchain-based, open-source newsroom product designed to raise the bar for corporate accountability.