The Jack Russell Agency Definitely Knows the Difference Between Creative Directors and Group Creative Directors

By Patrick Coffee 

Early this year, Don Saynor left JWT Canada after more than 16 years to found The Jack Russell Agency along with partner and fellow JWT (accounts) veteran Ali Dalfen.

Their stated goal with this Toronto-based venture is “to create real work for real people,” and they produced an introductory video of sorts in which they reveal that they hate the very same things that real people like you hate! Of course we mean “the traditional, slow and antiquated agency model,” along with things like conference calls and creatives getting bitchy over titles.

You’ve been here before.

That was funny, though they missed the part where the agency mutes the call and everyone proceeds to talk about how the client’s marketing team is staffed by a bunch of idiots. (We speak from experience here.)

We also really wanted that ECD to be the Trivago guy for some reason. They look very similar what with their white skin and grey hair!

So how is this new agency different from other agencies? Jack Russell is very small like the dog, with “a tight crew ensuring that each member of the team brings value to the table.” And they’ll turn to a revolving crew of freelancers to create just the right sort of team to work on each project.

Saynor says:

“We believe in using creativity to solve business problems, we just don’t believe in all the crap that happens in between.

Our agency is comprised of creative thinkers, be that planners, producers, writers, art directors and account managers. While we’d certainly be happy to win a Gold Lion, making things that speak to and engage actual humans is our focus.”

Regarding the video above, he says the agency “can’t make a shameless self promotion video boasting about our more efficient business model and not be committed to following through,” adding, “We aren’t bogged down by too many conflicting point of views from CEO, CCO, CD, ECD’s. The creative process doesn’t need to be complicated when the team knows our core values.”

This business model sounds very similar to other recently launched ventures like San Francisco’s Partners in Crime, Jaime Robinson and Lisa Clunie’s Joan and Erich & Kallman. Seems like quite a few disparate creative vets are reaching the same conclusions around the same time. We might even call it a trend!

Interestingly, the Canadian agency plans to focus on U.S.-based brands. It already has Canadian and stateside clients including a major liquor company, and it plans to officially announce its roster in the coming weeks and months.