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don't blend in


SCROLL DOWN

don't blend in


GOODbye, status quo

Courage is a nimble marketing collaborative that helps brands stand out from the crowd. We hand-pick teams of A-List multi-disciplinary talent (think grownups) to tackle the challenges that keep you up at night. We're independent, so we don't answer to a big, lumbering holding company, we answer to you. We've been told we're pretty great to work with, but we'll leave that up to you.

Brand Development / Strategy / Advertising / Design / Content / Wisdom / Honest Counsel / Results

 

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all lean, no fat


all lean, no fat


a BETTER model

Most agencies are built on a bloated blueprint that hasn't changed in more than a century. Courage's agile model is designed for the way brands must operate to thrive in today's business environment. No bureaucracy equals no unwanted fat. You pay for what you need (big thinkers) not for what you don't (big overhead). Why work any other way?

WE'RE GOOD AT:

Punching above our weight class / Absurd deadlines / Listening / Telling the truth / Playing well with others / Wine pairings 

WE'RE NOT GOOD AT:

Thinking small / Being 'yes' men (and women) / Letting clients down / Assembling IKEA furniture 

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ideas that go to '11'


ideas that go to '11'


maximum experience

Individually or collectively, we've been lucky to work with some great brands at our previous gigs, a mere handful of which are listed here. You could say we've pretty much done it all. Please get in touch for samples or case studies.

Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts / Zipcar / Gorton's / Product(RED) / John Hancock / Puma / A + E / Palace Resorts / Emirates Airline / Wayfair / truth (American Legacy Foundation) / Sony Entertainment / Harvard School of Public Health / TIAA(Cref) / National Parks Foundation / American Express Travel / Red Bull / J + M / codeMantra / Zildjian / SNL

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never not thinking


never not thinking


The USUAL SUSPECTS

We are a network of experts that generate and execute powerful ideas that build and sustain brand value. A few key folks are listed below, but there are others as well (video + film production, SEO, etc.). Each purpose-built team is carefully assembled just for you. And unlike bigger shops, there's no bait and switch. WYSIWYG.

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Jonathan Plazonja

FOUNDER / CREATIVE DIRECTOR

Jonathan is a writer and creative director known for thoughtful and very effective work. He's also recognized as an excellent manager and client partner. A veteran of CP, Modernista!, Hill/Holliday, and Leonard/Monahan, his experience includes Four Seasons Resorts & Hotels, Product(RED), John Hancock, Emirates Airline, and Cole Haan. But he's most proud of his pro bono work. He's won most of the industry's top awards, and a twist contest in Mexico City when he was five. 

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rachel poor

DIGITAL + SOCIAL MEDIA STRATEGY

Rachel's background includes advertising, marketing and public relations, and she draws upon all three disciplines to understand the role brands should play in social media. She's helped brands from Boston Ballet to Zipcar navigate their way through social waters. And she's been harnessing the power of social communities well before, well, social media. A certified yoga instructor, Rachel is probably most proud of her ability to do a perfect headstand on a surfboard.

Steve curran

DIRECTOR OF DIGITAL INNOVATION

Steve is a creative technologist who has created best-selling multi-media titles for Jeopardy and SNL, and has directed award-winning interactive projects for Red Bull, Warner Brothers, Atlantic Records, History Channel, Sony, A + E Television, Lifetime Entertainment and many others. Steve has authored several books on interactive design. He is also creating virtual reality projects, although he has yet to find one that will replicate the live music shows he enjoys so much.

 

Melanie lowe

DESIGN DIRECTOR

Melanie is a world class designer and branding expert. She created the original identity for game-changing Zipcar, and with Jonathan, she rebranded Wayfair, the largest online home furnishings retailer in the world. She has worked on everything from fashion brands like Tommy Hilfiger to top tier restaurants and food brands, to prestigious not-for-profit organizations including Community Servings and the Catalogue for Philanthropy. She attributes her calm demeanor to decades of practicing yoga.

NORBELLA

MEDIA, ANALYTICS & RESEARCH PARTNER

Norbella is a full-service media agency, but it's also that rare find that stands at the intersection of art and science, personality and persistence. Fiercely passionate about innovation, Norbella embraces challenges and invites disruption. As channels continue to proliferate and the landscape gets bumpier for audiences to navigate, this is where Norbella's nimble thinkers thrive. Under Steph Noris' expert guidance, Norbella delivers thought leadership and high value media placement and strategy.

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LINDA PLAZONJA

FORCE OF NATURE

Linda has worn many hats in her career--marketer, analyst, chef, project manager. A licensed social worker, she was Executive Director of the Massachusetts 9/11 Fund, a not-for-profit founded to help New England families who lost loved ones on that terrible day. Her social worker skills help make her an extraordinarily good listener and empathetic thinker who can get inside people's heads. A tireless yogi, she also leads small tours to Italy, Spain and Cuba centered around food, wine and sustainability.

KATHY HART

HEAD OF STRATEGIC PLANNING

Kathy learned the art of strategic planning at such esteemed shops as Goodby Silverstein, Mullen and Arnold. She honed her considerable chops on accounts like truth, American Legacy Foundation, HUMMER, National Parks Foundation, and L.L. Bean, to name a few. Her incredible insights into human behaviour have helped garner Effies, Ogilvy, One Show, and CA awards. But she's probably more proud of the many skateboarding tricks her young son is mastering.

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PRIYA CHITRE SHAH

USER EXPERIENCE DESIGN

After heading up UX practices for both Arnold and Hill/Holliday, Priya uses a mix of passion and the latest tools to create the best digital or physical experience for each brand. Her CV includes TripAdvisor, MGEMI, Uber, Twitter, Hood, DraftKings, Sharp Healthcare, Dunkin' Brands, John Hancock and more. When not busy creating customer journeys and other UX deliciousness, she enjoys practicing Indian classical dance and having kitchen dance parties with her two young children.

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BRIAN KASTELEIN

ANAYTICS WIZARD

For over 20 years, Brian has helped companies to better leverage data and effectively measure, test and optimize their online and offline marketing programs. He's worked with a full spectrum of clients, from start-ups to some of the country’s most innovative marketers, including Allstate, BellSouth, CVS, Fidelity, FootJoy, Four Seasons Resorts, IBM, J. Crew, Progressive, Radio Shack, Ralph Lauren, Royal Caribbean, Volvo, Vonage, VW and Walmart. With his rakish good looks, he is often mistaken for an an astronaut.

 

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we hold these truths


we hold these truths


philosophy

Outsmart beats outspend / Fortune favours the bold / Nobody was ever bored into buying anything / Good enough usually isn't / Underestimate your audience at your peril / The glass is always half full / Creativity is a weapon / Humanity > Data / The riskiest thing you can do is to play it safe / Life's short, be nice

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It's you vs the noise


It's you vs the noise


BE HEARD

Silly YouTube videos? Celebrity Twitter tirades? Your competitors aren't the only ones vying for space in your target's mindset. The Economist says the average American now spends over 12 hours a day processing media and messages, most of which are shrill and ineffective to boot. We facilitate engagement by making sure yours get heard through the din. 

Need help with a project? Ring Jonathan at (617) 320-6180. Or use this form. Cheers. 

BOSTON

167 Walnut Street
Brookline, MA 02445

HOURS

Monday - Friday       8:30am - 6pm
Saturday - Sunday   By appointment

 

Take out

In a hurry? No worries, we deliver.
 

©2018 Courage LLC

If you steal our shit, our lawyers will respond by opening up a giant can of legal whoop ass.