Now more than ever people are craving connection."

IRVINE, California — Advantage Marketing Partners agencies AMP Agency, Brand Connections and Upshot have been named three of the 2021 Chief Marketer 200, which lists the top brand engagement and activation agencies serving the United States.

The Chief Marketer 200 highlights agencies across the categories of experiential, sports and entertainment, promotion, retail, social media, digital, design, business-to-business brand engagement, business-to-business demand generation, business-to-business experiential and marketing technology. Agencies are selected based on testimonials from their clients, high caliber work, case study submissions, innovative and creative executions, and inspiring concepts that are propelling the industry forward.

AMP Agency continues to grow, Chief Marketer noted, gaining Chiquita and Zillow, among others, as clients. AMP Agency’s Color & Capital for Good campaign for Eastern Bank, which enlisted business leaders, influencers and entrepreneurs to help Boston’s Black and Latinx communities close the racial wealth gap, earned 9 million paid media impressions and more than 4 million video views, exceeding campaign benchmarks by more than 300 percent. The campaign also won one gold and seven platinum MarCom awards in digital, social, event and influencer categories.

“We continue to be focused on providing highly creative, data-driven campaigns that engage and influence audiences across the physical and digital marketplace and produce meaningful results for our clients,” said Michael Mish, senior vice president and general manager of AMP Agency.

Brand Connections was recognized by Chief Marketer for overcoming pandemic-driven challenges to in-store activations and live events by creating innovative curbside and e-commerce sampling programs and by pivoting to more digital promotions, including live-streaming experiences and custom videos. Activision/Blizzard, Frito-Lay and Nespresso are a few of the new clients who worked with the agency this year.

“In a year like no other, our Brand Connections team was able to quickly pivot to create and deliver contactless, digitally driven customer experiences that drove brand trial, education, engagement and conversion,” said Brand Connections Vice President of Strategy Dave Chatoff. “We’re honored to be recognized for the fourth straight year.”

Selecting Upshot, the editors of Chief Marketer called out its campaign for Korean-food brand Bibigo and its Mandu frozen dumplings, which maximized Bibigo parent company CJ Foods’ sponsorship of an October PGA tournament. Upshot created five broadcast ads and social media content featuring PGA players that ran throughout the event. The next Monday, it enabled consumers in six markets to surprise friends with Mandu dumplings via Postmates as a way of sharing experiences even in a socially distanced environment. The promotion sold out in all six markets, with some cities selling out within two hours. In addition to Bibigo, new clients include Kum & Go, Darigold, Medline and SVP Worldwide.

“Now more than ever people are craving connection and much of Upshot’s work this year focused on building meaningful brand relationships and fostering a sense of community, even during this time of such uncertainty,” said Lisa Hurst, executive vice president, marketing and strategy, Upshot.

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