We have a joke at Well Done that agency years are a lot like dog years. Between all the projects and the pace of the work, not to mention coping through catastrophic and disheartening events around the world, it often feels like I’ve aged seven years by the time I get to December. Last year seemed particularly exhausting: The team certainly earned their annual week off before the new year.
When you are in the thick of things, it’s easy to forget all that you’ve accomplished and the ways you’ve grown professionally as a team and as a business. In 2022, we added 11 new people to our team and had the opportunity to put some exciting and meaningful work out into the world for our clients. That’s a lot to celebrate.
Although choosing a favorite project is like picking a favorite child, I can’t list them all in one blog post. So here are a few that were particularly meaningful or transformative for me.
Built Around You/Hancock Health
Well Done has done a lot of work for healthcare systems over the years. This past year was our busiest yet, including the concepting and production of the first-ever brand campaign for Hancock Health, a healthcare network serving the east central part of Indiana. The multichannel campaign can be found across the greater Indianapolis area, from digital to social to billboards to streaming to online news. Yet, it’s the broadcast commercials that stand out as one of the largest and most intricate shoots in Well Done’s history.
Under the leadership of L.A.-based director Grady Hall and executive producer David Perry from Fivestone Studios, our roughly 35-person team turned an empty Goodwill Outlet into an ad hoc sound stage flexible enough to build out three different sets for three separate commercials over five days—as well as a carpentry studio, prop warehouse, wardrobe facility, greenroom, and cafeteria.
While I love the results, I lament that our next big shoot may have to happen elsewhere since our hometown doesn’t have the dedicated sound stage that we needed. (Psst: we’re working on that.) But that didn’t stop this great team from making our makeshift warehouse work, even if it meant hanging garbage bags over the floor-to-ceiling entry windows and setting up a photo studio in the loading dock for stills.
Today’s College Climb/Lumina Foundation
As part of our work for Lumina Foundation, we had the opportunity to create a three-pronged marketing and advocacy campaign to challenge common assumptions and generalizations about college students. In addition to digital and traditional marketing, the campaign included a short documentary film and an exhibit at NOVA College in Alexandria, Virginia that brought together today’s college students with educators and policymakers to showcase today’s growingly outdated higher education system.
I arrived at the NOVA gallery space just as our team leads—Anne Wolfcale, Nicholas Reese, and Jen Welch—were putting the finishing touches on the exhibit. The next day, documentary photographer Rachel Bujalski and one of the five students highlighted were the first to tour the gallery. (Spoiler alert: It was quite an emotional experience for all of us.) Find out more about the campaign on our Work Page.
Inspiring “Aha” Moments/Zaner-Bloser
Zaner-Bloser is a subsidiary of Highlights for Children, based in Columbus, Ohio. They publish literacy and math resources for PreK-6. But, as we found out, what they really do is spark learning and imagination.
Our strategy and writing team worked with Zaner-Bloser last year to zero in on a positioning statement that captured the feeling students get in those moments of discovery. This rallying cry, “Inspiring ‘Aha’ Moments,” and the marketing it drove culminated in a video for their national sales meeting that showed how Zaner-Bloser materials, in the hands of a good teacher, can spark a love for learning and self-expression.
I was inspired behind the scenes as well, watching the team, including our now Creative Director Jonathan Frazier directing his first project, design an elementary classroom set of my dreams and bring it to life through an excellent script and storyboard. Our client was engaged throughout the process, often guiding our on-screen teacher in the pedagogy of a classroom. And it was especially fun to see how our production partner, Fivestone Studios, not only kept things running smoothly in front of the camera but also kept the young talent energized between takes, including a rambunctious round of Simon Says.
Employer Hospital Price Transparency Project/Employers’ Forum of Indiana
While not all our work is as splashy as a big commercial shoot, it is equally as important. Our mission is to work with clients doing good in the world, and Employers’ Forum of Indiana certainly fits the bill.
Our web and public relations teams helped this employer-led health care coalition and their partner Mathematica launch its new interactive dashboard tool, Sage Transparency, as part of their annual National Hospital Price Transparency Conference. In addition to revamping the Price Transparency Project website, our team helped land more than 500 pieces of national, regional, and trade earned media—and counting.
These four projects only scratch the surface of all the meaningful work that we accomplished in 2022. From the new brand and fundraising video for Tindley Accelerated Schools and our ongoing work with the ACLU of Indiana to our partnership with Conexus to build awareness of their role in the advance manufacturing and logistics industry, I admire and respect the work my team does every day and love the energy they bring to it. I’m so glad they picked Well Done and can’t wait to see what 2023 brings.