Mekanism is quietly and quickly becoming one of adland’s most disruptive shops. And Jason Harris is the mind behind it.
The agency, which took home recognition for its work with Peloton at the Effie Awards last night, has just upgraded its New York office as its staff climbs to more than 200.
Harris has taken purpose by the horns and helped play a vital role in the positive transformation of advertising’s power by launching the Creative Alliance -- a group of companies dedicated to donating time and resources to sculpt campaigns that change the world for the better.
The idea was birthed at the White House during Barack Obama and Joe Biden’s time as a way to support key non-profit initiatives from Civic Nation, a D.C.-based charity the alliance leans on.
Today, the Creative Alliance houses more than 80 companies and has produced 10 campaigns (eight of which are still active). The group acts as a translator and matchmaker, partnering the right creative agency, media platform, content creators and production companies with the specific initiative based on the brief. All work is pro-bono.
Impactful work includes "It’s On Us" -- a drive to stop sexual assaults on college campuses. It resulted in around 440,000 "#ItsOnUs" pledges and thousands of educational events on more than 500 campuses.
Campaign US caught up with Harris to talk all things spark and volume.
What is the key to unlocking a brand's true DNA and purpose (please don't say 'authenticity’)? Soul.
Name the biggest challenge facing both agencies and brands today. Bravery.
What's the number one thing you look for in new talent? Spark.
Name a brand nailing purpose-driven marketing right now (other than Nike, because we all know that team is killing it). Microsoft.
My biggest career fear is relevance and I overcome it by listening.
The best creative work always has this one major ingredient: simplicity.
What piece of advice would you give to adland's future talent that wasn't necessarily important when you were starting out in the industry? Volume.
The unsung heroes of adland are consumers.