Mike O’Neill, CEO; John Nickel, president; Kevin Quigley, executive vice president; Switch: Liberate Your Brand Featured

8:01pm EDT June 30, 2012
Mike O’Neill, CEO; John Nickel, president; Kevin Quigley, executive vice president; Switch: Liberate Your Brand

FINALISTS

Due to the strategic collaboration of three executives to diversify its revenue base, Switch: Liberate Your Brand is about to celebrate its 10th anniversary as an independent organization with a portfolio of clients that includes big names such as Coca-Cola, 5-Hour Energy, Elsevier, Vitamin Water and Enterprise Rent-A-Car, among others.

The experiential marketing agency, headquartered in St. Louis, is owned and operated by CEO Mike O’Neill, President John Nickel and Executive Vice President Kevin Quigley. The trio began as colleagues at Busch Creative Services, a subsidiary of Anheuser-Busch, before taking advantage of the opportunity to collectively purchase BCS in 2002 — which would evolve into Switch: Liberate Your Brand.

With the end of a three-year guarantee of revenue by Anheuser-Busch, the team realized Switch needed to become 

John Nickel, president, Switch: Liberate Your Brand

self-reliant and diversify its services in order to survive. To differentiate from competitors and attract clients, the trio worked to make Switch a full-service provider with account management, creative department and production all under one roof.

In addition to traditional capabilities, such as strategy and design, Switch has nontraditional capabilities too, such as market research, a digital innovation lab, a large format print shop, a fabrication studio, video and motion graphics production and equipment.

These capabilities allow Switch to have control over the full experiential marketing process — from initiation, strategic brand conversation and development to the delivery of the product.

Additionally, Switch recently added a director of technology to enhance its digital/technology group, as well as an intellectual property director to leverage assets to develop new intellectual properties for client use.

The organization’s innovative model has helped the company grow in both revenue and size. Switch now employs 116 full-time headquarter employees and more than 900 field marketing associates across the U.S.

How to reach: Switch: Liberate Your Brand, www.liberateyourbrand.com