How the Hop Learned to Humanize Brands – And Why You Should Too


An agency’s work culture is reflective of its leadership and New Honor Society will give you a glimpse of it, the moment you walk in through the front door. If Helen’s exuberant greeting doesn’t perk you up and fill you up with sunshine, you are dead on the inside. The aptly-titled Ambassador of First-Impressions, Helen will make you feel excited that you got out of bed that morning…and it won’t end there.

We met Holly, president, and one half of the Heidi-Holly duo that helms the creative boutique agency that is New Honor Society as we were doing what we do every Monday; gawk like tourists in the agency we’ve hopped over to. Little did we know that a meeting with her later in the week would be an insight-filled, educational mind-trip not just through the intricacies of agency life but also an in-depth understanding of why being better human beings is beneficial to both people and brands.

When NHS says it invests in people and relationships it isn’t an empty platitude. When it talks about transparency, it is visible even to the most casual observer. We had barely made it through our introductions before we were invited to sit in on their weekly meeting in the ‘Mandatorium’, which you really, actually, definitely have to attend. This is a communication agency that understands that internal dialogue is just important as the external one they start for their clients.

The Best Seat in The House

The fabled corner office, floor to ceiling windows and a great view of downtown St. Louis, belongs to no one…and yet belongs to everyone. Doing away with the rigid hierarchy of old, the corner office is in reality, a conference room that is accessible by all. Reinforcing the ‘people first’ approach that NHS has always adhered to.

Human Not Plastic

Authenticity is not marketing strategy, it is a projection of who you truly are. NHS can help brands become better people because its employees strive to be better people every day. We weren’t even halfway through our week and we are already convinced. Not just because we want to be better strategists or account managers or creatives…but also because we want to be better human beings. Everything else will follow. I challenge you to find a classroom that can offer so much in such little time.

Every agency we’ve been to so far have had their unique set of experiences to offer. HLK fostered us through the first week and eased us into the internship process. Getting to know your team is a lot more important than you think. H&L Partners gave us a chance to pitch to an actual client. Among other things, rukus taught us that fulfilling commitments and professionalism is paramount in the advertising world. ITC introduced us to the world of experiential marketing and Osborn Barr pushed the importance of knowing your audience, irrespective of their zip code. New Honor Society inspired a healthy competitive spirit and gave us a completely different outlook on our professional lives.

We have two more weeks left and we can’t wait to see what’s in store for us next. Have you followed the Hop’s journey over the last few weeks? We’d love to hear you what you think of it. Drop a comment below and let us know.