2019 Creative Agencies of the Year

Coyne PR (Independent)

There was a time when Coyne PR, with its values-driven, people-first culture, was a fixture on our Agency of the Year lists and a frequent visitor to the center stage at Cipriani. Then there was an interruption — financial shenanigans by a former CFO throwing the management team for a loop that took time to close. But if the quality of the work submitted to our SABRE competition is anything to go by, Coyne is back to its best: the firm garnered 11 nominations this year, the only firm outside the big three of Edelman, Ketchum, and Weber Shandwick to reach double-digits.

That work includes helping Red Robin demonstrate its support for National Teachers Day and drive traffic into its restaurants at the end of the school year; showcasing energy efficient technologies for Shell Lubricants via a coast-to-coast roadshow; positioning Banfield Pet Hospital as a leader in pet disaster readiness in the wake of several high-profile hurricanes; supporting Pacira Pharmaceuticals as it sought solutions to the opioid epidemic; peeling back the blue sticker for Chiquita bananas to drive trade media coverage; and — on the principle that bacon improves everything — helping Einstein Bros Bagels sell out its “cheesy shampoo and bacon conditioner.”

But it’s not just the work that stands out at Coyne. The firm has always understood the value chain in PR, that good people win good business, and that good people and good business translate into good profits, and so its mission has always been to focus on being the best place to work. To restore its pre-eminence in that regard, CEO Tom Coyne conducted meetings at every level of the organization to seek out ideas for improving both work life and client service, and then implemented unlimited time off, work from home programs, an onsite gym, extended maternity leave and paid paternity leave, and unique office amenities.

So even beyond the quality of creative work, 2018 was a good year. Fees were up by about 7% to $30 million, with new business from Chiquita, CSL Behring, FloSports, Happify, Hudson Group, and the International Code Council, joining a roster that includes Beam Suntory, ChapStick, Fiat Chrysler,  Hard Rock International, Pfizer, and Timberland. — PH