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Momentum, ambition and the guts to back it up make HL Group our agency of the year.
A longtime giant in fashion and luxury PR, HL has transcended those roots to become a generalist firm on steroids—a force in corporate, tech, lifestyle, crisis and even brand strategy.
The firm also counseled Al Jazeera through its US shutdown (quite sagely) did what it could to help Volkswagen through its disaster and shepherded the NBA Players’ Association through its collective bargaining talks. On the talent side, the firm handled the masterful rollout of longtime client Lady (“Call me Joanne”) Gaga’s new album and persona. Ryan Lochte: Matthew Hiltzik’s clients make headlines, but sometimes not the way they want to.
But its biggest get was Fox News host (and Donald Trump’s BFF) Megyn Kelly. It’s Hiltzik’s less heralded campaigns, however, that reveal how much juice his agency has acquired—and in how many directions its influence spreads.
Its digital arm set off sparks for clients as wide-ranging as L’Oreal, Taraji P. Its DKC/O M entertainment division reps Andrew Lloyd Webber, Second City and hot Broadway tickets like Naomi Campbell to ex-California first lady Maria Shriver to agitpop screamers Prophets of Rage.
It’s not all about celebs: the Brands division sprinkles stardust on clients like Pepsi, Activision and Samsung, who seriously needs it.
Strategic acquisitions and smart organic launches have defined DKC under CEO Sean Cassidy.
It’s also been the big dog in several proxy fights, repping i Robot, Chipotle, Buffalo Wild Wings and Cabela’s.Moving from its old dungeon-like offices into tech startup-style digs have also helped boost the mood, as have big wins by its in house content studio.H K’s unique selling proposition continues to be thought leadership; they may not sound sexy, but the firm’s proprietary platforms for reputation monitoring, influencer identification and reaction analysis set industry standards.It beat bigger firms for HP’s coveted million product and corporate communications assignment.But it got the “honey, I want a divorce” bomb from global beverage giant Diageo after six years.