Innovative Droga5 Hired as NYCFC’s Advertising Agency

The influential, industry-changing agency will work to make NYCFC relevant in New York City
by Nick Chavez   |   Monday, October 21, 2013

Blue City – column on New York City FC (NYCFC) & the NYC area soccer scene.

New York City FC has shown yet another signal of its ambition and wisdom by calling upon the unique and much-lauded talents of advertising agency Droga5.

The award-winning Manhattan-based company has been hired to be NYCFC’s Agency of Record (an advertising agency that coordinates promotion of several products handled by more than a single agency), though very few details about the partnership have been announced publicly as of yet.

About the agreement, Droga5’s Chief Strategy Officer Jonny Bauer commented, “As an agency of people who both live for football and love New York, the branding and launch of our city’s first MLS team is a dream project. We’re looking forward to working hand in hand with our NYCFC partners to give New York football fans something to get excited about, and all New Yorkers yet another source of pride.”

That the New York City advertising agency – which also has offices in London, England and Sydney, Australia – has a passion, and presumably, an intimate-understanding of the world’s game is vital to the effectiveness of the branding/advertising project with NYCFC. The fact that they also know the city so well, and are so well-respected locally and globally, can only benefit its assignment to create excitement and interest amongst New York metro-area residents for the fledgling MLS club scheduled to begin playing in 2015.

NYCFC CEO David Soriano also commented on the partnership.

"In Droga5 we have found the ideal partner to help us establish and grow New York City Football Club,” he said. “While they have a global perspective, they are also locally rooted in New York, ensuring proper understanding and communication with our fans in this great city."

Based on the advertising agency’s very impressive work with some of its high-profile clients, Droga5 certainly does seem like the “ideal” partner in portraying NYCFC as an important soccer club worth following and supporting, whose mission will be of considerable importance if they are to attract the millions of world football fans that already reside in the Big Apple, but have not yet taken much of an interest in Major League Soccer.

Droga5 has used its creative talent for combining intelligent cinematography with unconventional, witty premises or inspirational/relatable contemporary dialogue to make advertising more into a form of thought-provoking entertainment, rather than an inconvenience. This has translated into very successful and Avant-guard campaigns for clients like Coca Cola, Prudential, Jay-Z’s biography (For Microsoft - Bing), and even the 2008 Obama Campaign with the help of comedian Sarah Silverman.

The agency’s industry-innovating work and humanitarian efforts (such as its UNICEF Tap Project, which encouraged patrons at restaurants to donate a dollar for tap water usually given for free in order help provide children from impoverished nations access to clean, drinkable water) has won it several awards such as Creativity Magazine’s Agency of the Year (2007, 2011), Top 5 of Advertising Age’s A-List (2010-2012), and Adweek’s U.S. Agency of the Year of 2012, just to name a few.

Droga5 founder David Droga is widely-regarded as the most exceptional creative director in advertising, and is the most-awarded individual in the history of the Cannes International Festival of Creativity. The list of honors and awards Droga and his only 7-year-old company has earned and continues to pile up is long, for what is now one of the modern leaders of the advertising industry.  

Recognizing that much of the media being consumed today is through the internet and shared virally, Droga says, “We try to do work that can be spread around the internet, that creates movements as opposed to being disposable and disappearing the minute the media budget runs out.”

This emphasis in the power of viral media proliferation can be especially important in attracting the all-important youth demographic that has seemed to embrace professional soccer so much in the United States during the last decade.

If Droga5 can successfully instill NYCFC brand loyalty, and influence a considerable percentage of the almost 19 million NYC metro-area residents to identify with the club by developing one of its typically-creative and memorable advertising campaigns, New York City FC can expect to enjoy immediate cultural and grassroots relevance in the Big Apple.

And considering Droga5’s remarkable track-record and reputation for inspired, visionary creativity, who would bet against them?


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This is the longest-running column focused on the only team representing the 5 Boroughs in world football: New York City FC. Long may its supporters continue to make history.