The Monkeys: Mumbrella Creative Agency Review – No longer ‘drunk’, the attractive indie had a good year

MCAR coverThe newly published Mumbrella Creative Agency Review examines Australia’s top 30 ad agencies. Today Robin Hicks examines how The Monkeys has fared over the last 12 months.

Triple-digit revenue and profit growth on the back of new business including Ikea, Google, Diageo and Sydney Opera House. One of the best pieces of branded content of the year in The Ship Song Project. It is probably fair that The Monkeys – formerly The Three Drunk Monkeys – tops our survey in the most exciting category: momentum.

With the exception of its woefully managed name change, the young agency’s story – that is a content company as much as it is an ad agency – has been well told by the trade press. Its TV series, 30 Seconds, and a hatful of awards has helped create a potent brand for a company that is still only five years old. It is hardly surprising that one of The Monkeys’ best scores is for its impact on the industry.

With the grace period of goodwill for its likeable leaders now well over, The Monkey’s high profile has been used by rivals to dismiss much of its success as hype, pointing to the loss of Foxtel as a sign of weakness. But growing the agency by more than a third in a year is probably enough for the trio to claim they’ve had a successful 12 months.

In our survey, the agency fares well in categories young players would want to stand out in: creativity, integration and talent. But it is viewed as better by Mumbrella’s readers than our expert panel. One describes the agency as “faultless – the agency came of age when Foxtel departed without skipping a beat”. Another argues that the agency has yet to live up to its promise. “The Monkeys continues to mesmerize and inspire clients. Imagine the potential if it really starts doing what it says on the tin.”

With the sale of Host to Havas and 303 to Interpublic Group, The Monkeys is now Australia’s largest independent advertising agency with 70 employees. The the knocks on the door at Great Buckingham Street are likely to become even more frequent in the months ahead. But the fumbled solicitations of their former employer, Saatchi & Saatchi, will have assured them they’re better off going it alone. At least for now.

To read more about The Monkeys, including full details on how it was scored by both our expert panel and Mumbrella’s own readers, to view examples of the agency’s work and read its own assessment of its performance, buy a copy of the Mumbrella Creative Agency Review priced at $75. The book features an assessment of the country’s top 30 ad agencies. To buy the book, click here.


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