Goodby Silverstein & Partners has basked for some years in the general adulation of its peers. Arguably no other US agency has been so consistently admired for so many years, but the partners themselves are determined to keep their shop small and laid-back. As a result, unlike equally admired agencies such as Wieden & Kennedy, for example, Goodby Silverstein has resisted the temptation to expand its footprint with offices in other countries or even much beyond its home city of San Francisco. Luckily, parent group Omnicom agrees with this strategy, and this creatively led agency retains standalone status within the marketing giant's portfolio, allowed very much to go its own way, producing ads under a guiding philosophy which it describes as "art serving capitalism". Jeff Goodby and Rich Silverstein founded the business in 1983. Omnicom acquired the business in 1992, but the founders remain co-chairmen, still closely involved with day-to-day business. Margaret Johnson is the agency's long-serving chief creative officer (and was named AdAge executive of the year in 2018); Derek Robson is president. AdAge estimated revenues of $116m in 2017.
Capsule checked 5th October 2018
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Adbrands Daily Update 27th Aug 2019: "Logo Goes Here". A bold experiment here from Goodby Silverstein for PepsiCo's Doritos brand. For its new campaign, which launched this weekend on MTV's VMA awards event, PepsiCo has dropped the Doritos name from all branding and marketing (and packaging?) for that semi-iconic product. Presumably for a limited time only. Even the website has been rebranded as thelogogoeshere.com, and contains no reference to the D-word. The idea is to appeal to Generation Z consumers who - supposedly - reject traditional advertising gimmicks. Naomi Klein would be so proud. Or would she? Because of course, this is actually the ultimate brand statement rather than the absence of branding. It's still a gimmick. The ad may not carry the Doritos name, but it's all about that brand, not about generic corn chips in their abstract form. And that triangle device is almost as recognisable, especially in the US, as Nike's Swoosh, arguably the original brandless brand. Even so, it will be interesting to see how long PepsiCo can hold its nerve before the name comes thundering back into full display.
Adbrands Daily Update 12th Mar 2019: The Cannes Lions festival announced this year's winner of the Lion of St Mark, the annual award that celebrates an outstanding contribution to the advertising industry. Previous winners include John Hegarty, Dan Wieden, Lee Clow of TBWA, Bob Greenberg of R/GA and Dave Droga. Joint recipients for 2019 will be Jeff Goodby and Rich Silverstein of Goodby Silverstein. The award will be presented during the final awards show of this year's festival on June 21st.
Adbrands Social Media 15th Feb 2019: "Legend". BMW's new US agency Goodby Silverstein & Partners has come up with a stunning campaign to launch the carmaker's X7 fullsize SUV. The resulting spot will make its TV debut in the Oscars telecast in just over a week's time, and is suitably cinematic. The film casts the car in the role of a mighty chariot that allows its driver - Mrs McLanden presumably, but don't presume to call her "Old" - to conquer all sorts of heightened versions of everyday perils. Some lovely ideas; and superb CGI from MPC. Star director Dante Ariola is behind the camera; Chris Pine provided the voiceover.
Adbrands Social Media 29th Jan 2019: "More Than OK". The odd thing about advertising for Pepsi is that, even now, more than a century after its creation, it is still to a large extent defined by its rivalry with a certain other popular beverage. It's like some kind of Groundhog Day version of Avis's famous "We Try Harder" but one that lasts for over 120 years. Coke never has to mention Pepsi in its advertising, but the bigger brand is always lurking somewhere in the background of most Pepsi marketing. Goodby Silverstein's Super Bowl spot for the blue beverage makes fine use of Steve Carell's Ultimate Mr Nice Guy persona, and also throws in cameos from Cardi B and Lil' Jon to make sure that every market demographic is catered for. And you know what? The results are more than OK; they're really rather good in fact.
Adbrands Social Media 7th Jan 2019: "The Encounter". Best comedy ad of a Golden Globes ceremony filled with unexpected winners was this brilliant sci-fi parody from Goodby Silverstein & Partners for Pepsi, a pastiche of Denis Villeneuve's 'The Arrival' movie. William H Macy - the character actor's character actor - solves the mystery of what these alien visitors want from mankind. It's arguably a little late in the day for an 'Arrival' parody, but the spot more than makes up for that in the final sequence with a series of surprise gags nesting one inside another like a set of Russian Matryoshka dolls.
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