The little shop that could

The RalstonGroup is not the largest ad agency in Oregon. In fact, the 16-person shop is not even sure if it’s the largest shop in Bend, the small town 180 miles east of Portland that it calls home.

But the plucky little agency wants the advertising world to know two things: It is very happy in its little town, and, yes, business is quite good and getting better.

The shop recently unveiled a new Web site, logo and positioning statement built around the theme, “Clean Air. Fresh Ideas.”

“We want to be the SUV of advertising agencies,” explained Kevin Archer, creative director and partner. No, it’s not that Ralston wants to be seen as a hard-to-park gas guzzler. Instead, it wants to position its middle-of-nowhere location as a selling point. People come to the agency because they like the picturesque location.

“We have many escapees from big cities working here,” said Archer. “There is so much business around here. We are not up one month and down the next. We may be a future model for the large agencies.”