We’re Celebrating 20 Years of Y&C.
Wow, 20 years as an agency. That was fast.
Rather than taking our collective brand identity out for champagne and party hats, we decided to do something a little different.
We invited two of our favorite York and Chapelers to a speed round of questions.
So, without further filler copy, let’s hear what our Managing Director, Nelson Ho, and CEO, Jill Perkins, have to say about this great place we work at.
Let’s start at the beginning.
What is the birth story of York and Chapel?
Nelson: Well, we didn’t come into the world as York and Chapel. We started in 2001 as Luscious Design in San Francisco. It was just after the Dotcom bubble burst when we decided to create an independent design company… Then in 2005, we went international when Dave Ho and Kevin Heslin set up our east coast operation in Connecticut. It was at this time that we changed our name cards to read York and Chapel.
Can you take us back to the early days and name some of your bigger accounts?
Nelson: We had big names under our belt right from the start. Two of our first accounts were Disney and NBC. Not a bad place to start.
Jill: I came into the agency in a slightly different way. I was actually working with Amplitude Marketing and Y&C was working with us and BIC and Dynacraft in Connecticut.
How do you keep things fresh and interesting at Y&C?
Jill: For me, it’s been all about surrounding myself with smart people who have diverse capabilities, ages, and backgrounds. We do lots of research for our clients and that prompts us to innovate within. I also am a pop culture fiend.
As marketing veterans, what are the big changes that you’ve seen in the industry?
Jill: Technology. Paperless lifestyle, digital calendars, and of course these days, Zoom, Slack, social media, mobile/cellular, and feeling like my cell phone is part of my arm.
Nelson: All of what Jill says, but also analytics, self-service Marketing SaaS.
Here’s one I think all of our clients would like to know. What is the best bit of advice you ever received from a client?
Jill: Not the best, but the most profound: You’re only as good as your last conversation.
Nelson: The value of any company like ours walks out the door at 6 pm every day. The people make the company.
Most 20-year old kids think they have all the answers, how is this agency different?
Nelson: Hahaha…well, I’m not sure I buy the metaphor. But for us, it’s about having the courage to see every project as new without bringing along preconceptions.
Jill: We know we DON’T have all the answers, but strive to do our best to stay informed and honest about our findings.
For this one, I’m going to ask you to pull out your crystal ball, and predict how you see the next 20 years in marketing, branding, and advertising changing?
Jill: With skyrocketing marketing consumption in the digital space, we should see strong innovation with devices. Traditional media may be a faint memory with a pronounced community of cord-cutters. Sadly, face-to-face interactions will fade. More social platforms will emerge and the OGs will either pivot or die.
Nelson: A greater focus on…wait, I need to change the batteries on this crystal ball.
Ok, here’s an easy one for both of you. What do you want for the agency’s 20th birthday?
Nelson: I want the people in the company to be able to visit each other again.
Jill: I’d love to hear how our long-standing clients feel about the last 20 years and how we played a role.
Last one. Tell me three words to describe Y&C now. And three words to describe Y&C in the future.
Jill: Y&C now – Diverse, Innovative, Family. Y&C in the future – Global, Technology-forward, Family.
Nelson: Y&C now – Supportive, Diverse, Innovative. Y&C in the future – Supportive, Dynamic, Digitally-Driven.
That was great. Thanks so much for your time and your illuminating responses to the lightning round of questions. I guess the only question left is, how are we going to share this birthday cake over Zoom?