If you can't beat 'em ... buy 'em?
New York-based independent creative agency Terri & Sandy are making waves at Cannes for a campaign that didn't even launch until the International Festival of Creativity was well underway: a GoFundMe drive to buy Droga5 back from Accenture Interactive, the consultancy that acquired it in April.
Attentive flâneurs along the Croisette Thursday were quick to notice large posters hung over the Dior shop with the words "free Droga" printed across them—with the O in Droga rendered as a handcuff. Beachgoers gazing at clouds might have seen a plane flying a black #FreeDroga banner high above the beach.
Terri & Sandy co-founders Terri Meyer and Sandy Greenberg set up a #FreeDroga GoFundMe page at 6 a.m. Thursday morning, CEST, asking for donations so that Droga5—bereft of its independence—could buy itself back.
In addition to the outdoor signage and airborne banner, Terri & Sandy is working with media agency Cage Point Media on the effort. Greenberg declined to reveal the budget behind the campaign, but those Cannes planes do not come cheap.
Greenberg, CEO and co-founder of the agency, says the idea originated after the 2019 Effie Awards, at which Terri & Sandy was named “#2 Most Effective Independent Agency in North America," behind only Droga5. But as of April, Droga5 could no longer call itself an indie.
“We have a lot of reverence for Droga, so we decided to poke some fun at them,” she says. ”To regain their independence, what they should do is buy themselves back.” A Droga5 spokesperson said the agency wouldn't be commenting on the campaign.
The GoFundMe ask is a big one: $475 million (the amount Accenture is likely to have paid for the agency). Of course, the agency doesn’t actually expect to raise that much cash, and whatever does come in, Terri & Sandy will be donating to the Malala Fund, a nonprofit founded by activist Malala Yousafzai that supports education for girls across the globe.
Greenberg says the paid social behind the campaign is Terri & Sandy’s “first social push for ourselves.” Terri & Sandy posts across Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram make small jeers at the agency’s lack of independence or updates on reaching that $475 million.