It’s not always easy being an indie. You have to work harder. You have to do more. You’re little in a big business world. Every now and then, you wonder, “What if we were bought?”
Zulu Alpha Kilo is here to remind you (and your clients) why the grass is greener on your side of the fence.
Over the past few years, Toronto’s Zulu Alpha Kilo has created videos tackling a variety of well-known industry pain points, from spec work to the RFP process. Now, it’s taking on holding companies and what happens to an agency after being sold.
This year’s video, Billy’s Lemonade, tells the story of a young boy, who sells his thriving lemonade stand to a holding company from New York. Billy is forced to make a slew of compromises in his business. The holding company forces Billy to raise fees, switch to prepackaged lemonade powder and make cups 80% smaller. It even has him fire his sister, because “she doesn’t add value.” Eventually, all the compromises drive Billy’s clients away, business suffers and the holding company ousts Billy from his own lemonade stand.
It’s an entertaining satire about agencies and holding companies (unless you’ve been bought and are struggling, in which case it possibly hurts). It’s also Zulu’s salute to all the other independent agencies out there. The message, Here’s to all the independents, appears on screen at the end of the film, as Billy wins back his old clients by opening a new independent lemonade stand with his sister.
Billy’s Lemonade was unveiled at the Agency of the Year competition, an annual awards show hosted by strategy, Canada’s largest trade publication for the industry. Every year, the shortlisted agencies are asked to produce a video to debut at the gala night. Zulu has used the platform to call attention to issues that ail the industry in a very cheeky manner. The 2015 viral sensation, Say No to Spec, and last year’s World’s Worst RFP premiered at the same event.
Billy’s Lemonade was produced by Zulubot, written by creative team, Michael Siegers and Jonah Flynn, and directed by Zulu founder, Zak Mroueh.
Agency: Zulu Alpha Kilo
Creative Director: Zak Mroueh
Art Director: Michael Siegers
Writer: Jonah Flynn
Producer: Colleen Allen
Account Team: Kayla MacDonald
Production House: Zulubot
Director: Zak Mroueh
Director of Photography: Paul Steinberg
Exec Producer: Tom Evans
Editor: Jessie Posthumus
Audio Mixer: Rob Morrice
Casting Director: Shasta Lutz @Jigsaw
Transfer: Eric Whipp @ Alter Ego,
Audio: Dino Cuzzolino