There are few things more uniquely Los Angeles than a talent agency—especially mega-agency CAA, which has been responsible for the careers of Meryl Streep, George Clooney and Martin Scorsese. But with the convergence of entertainment and advertising, it was only a matter of time before CAA got in the action with the acquisition of experiential marketing shop PGW in 2014. The shop specializes in myriad marketing tactics from event production to guerilla to mobile for clients across CAA’s roster like HBO, J.P. Morgan and Emirates Airline. Russ Jones, CAA Experiential’s global head of marketing who was previously PGW’s president and CEO, knows that the agency’s Venice, Calif., locale provides employees with the right combination of salty air and recreation that inspires great ideas. “The heart and soul of Venice trickles over into our space and sets the relaxed tone of the workplace and, in turn, establishes a healthy medium of work-life balance,” he said. “It’s not uncommon for our employees to play a match of table tennis between conference calls or to cruise down to the marina on bikes and boards for lunch breaks. It’s truly an environment that we are proud to call home.”
This space was the first home of the legendary Shelby American assembly shop. Jones is an auto buff and paid tribute to the space’s roots with a replica of the Shelbys created there.
“Clark Little, a world-renowned surfing photographer, captured this moment perfectly in a piece titled Wave Dance,” Jones, himself an avid surfer, explained. “Fortunately, I was able to acquire a custom five-panel rendering of this piece, which now hangs in our office and helps tide me over 'til the next set.”
In 2003, Jones' team and the Game Show Network created the world’s largest bobblehead—certified by the Guinness World Records—to promote the network’s first reality series, Chuck Woolery: Naturally Stoned.
The in-house production department is always ready to “create any content for clients or host photo shoots,” Jones said.
“The skateboards and longboards are available to anyone in the office who wants to take them out for a spin,” Jones said.
The orange fish head is from a promotional partnership between CAA Experiential and Paramount aimed to create buzz around the 2011 release of Paramount’s Rango.
This story first appeared in the October 10, 2016 issue of Adweek magazine.
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