Washington, D.C. Marketing Agency

What if marketing was more efficient, effective, and scalable?

TOP is a D.C.-based integrated marketing agency

Chat with a Washington, D.C. marketing strategist
Who we are

We’re the first marketing agency to apply growth marketing principles — including the process of systematic experimentation and measurement — to all core agency disciplines inside the Beltway.

TOP = Test + Optimize + Perform

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A full-service Washington, D.C. marketing agency

From the Foggy Bottom to Cap South, we help companies in the District market at scale

We have roots in the DMV, surrounded by some of the most innovative and impactful companies in the world. Many of these operate right in our back yard giving us a front row seat to the future of government, technology, and policy that is second to none.  This gives us the opportunity to keep our fingers on the pilse of the latest marketing trends, and position ourselves as first movers on emerging digital marketing and social media platforms, too.

We collaborate closely with your internal brand team to align on key messages from minute one. Our brand strategists can then help you uncover the “white space” that separates your from your competitors, giving you a leg up. At every step, we prioritize the end audience, their needs, and their specific use cases to break through the noise and ensure that our audience is hearing our message and acting on it.

Successful companies need in-depth marketing research to understand their competitive strengths and weaknesses in the marketplace.  We’re experts in using mass media analysis, social media listening, surveys, and focus groups to find the best angles to attack the competition and position your brand above the fray.

Digital may be the name of the game but its not the only game in town. Successful brands need to make sure their digital marketing integrates seamlessly with their non-digital tactics. At TOP, our team of landing page optimizers, pay-per-click experts, and keyword researchers work side-by-side with broadcast media buyers, out-of-home planners, and our full creative team for a truly integrated 360-degree marketing experience.

But it all comes down to sales. For that, we turn to sophisticated psychological triggers to create content ideas that are sticky, activate key emotions, and leverage the power of calendar-based marketing — causing consumers, customers, and key influencers to take action now.

We’ve have learned from the best performing companies in one of the most demanding markets on the planet from Vienna and McLean, to K Street and the Hill. We implement agile project management principles to work in a series of systematic “sprints” that are aligned to key drive periods. This ensures our productivity is consistent and speedy, while giving us the ability to course correct with confidence based on real world information.

The result is a Washington, D.C. marketing agency with the drive of a fast-growing tech startup and the global reach of a best-in-class enterprise.  Let’s grab a coffee at La Colombe or a burger at Le Diplomate and talk about how we can work together.

Capabilities

We are full-service

We work across more than 35 disciplines organized into 7 functional groups:  advertising, branding, commerce, communications, creative, digital, and growth. Because we're perfectly integrated, there are no independent silos. Each member of the D.C. team works with an eye toward cross functional integration with a common set of processes and metrics.

We are data-driven

With the right data, we can move the world. As long as we work hard enough and ask the right questions. As such, everything we do is A/B tested. From PR pitches to brand messaging guidelines to digital landing pages, we don't just assume the right approach, we test it and know it.  We share these data points with our Washington, D.C. clients because we know that better data means better insights.  If you don’t measure, how can you optimize?

We are growth-focused

We're a D.C.-based marketing agency that applies growth marketing principles — including the process of systematic experimentation and measurement — to all core agency disciplines.  The key to success is to make sure that you're not only climbing fast through the demanding Beltway battlefield, but that you know that you've propped your ladder up against the right wall in the first place. This growth-focused approach is quite literally in our name:  We’re TOP —  we Test, Optimize, and Perform at scale.

We have global reach

We’ve worked on integrated marketing campaigns in more than 25 countries on six continents — and if Antarctica emerges as the Silicon Tundra, we'll work there too.  We have boots on the crowd in most leading markets across the world.  We’re one of the few D.C. area agencies that can operate locally with a laser focus, but also have major impacts globally at the same time. Our scale will help your brand scale.

We work as one team

As we mentioned, there are no silos here. We work as on team across all disciplines which means you'll never be shuttled off to a team that doesn't understand the wealth and breadth of the work you're doing. From D.C. to London, we work as one cohesive team extending to our expertise and project management approaches.

A marketing agency from Washington, D.C.

We love Washington, D.C. brands

We started TOP by asking a very existential question: If a marketing agency never existed before, how would we invent it using the tools and technology of today?

We believe in the power of great storytelling with rigorous testing and that cuts across every one of our 35 disciplines. Our Washington D.C. team conducts multivariate testing of key stories and messaging (A/B testing across multiple dimensions) on the daily. We then analyze conversion rates to determine what is working and what isn’t. Once we know that, we scale up the “winning” story ideas and key messages to ensure your key KPIs and ROI are achieved. Our clients thoroughly appreciate the insights they get into their optimal product story from the results of our multivariate testing and data-driven approach as it helps them better understand their business.

These days, you have to be channel and platform agnostic in order to succeed as the marketing world is evolving at ludicrous speeds opening up brand new opportunities constantly. On any given day you’ll find us shooting a crisp viral video for a scrappy wearables start-up on the National Mall, rebranding a global CPG brand that could use a refresh, hashing out SEO strategy for government contractors, or managing a hot new Silicon Hill company’s LinkedIn presence. We even organize world-changing CSR campaigns, in a city that is always changing the world.

Just because we work in Washington, D.C., doesn’t mean we spend all day sitting in our blue suits in front of a computer screen. Our experiential marketing and events planning team has hosted everything from viral man-on-the-street style stunts along 14th street to million dollar conferences at the Convention Center — always keeping the customer or consumer experience top of mind.

FAQ

What is your marketing agency’s approach to day-to-day client management for Washington, D.C. brands?

We apply four fundamental principles to our account management, procedures, and teams:  be proactive, be responsive, be flexible, and be transparent.

Each of these four principles contribute to rapid feedback loops with our Washington, D.C. clients.  This has given us a reputation for being a rapid-strike agency. For instance, when a famous cat brand came to us looking for a global activation with just two week's notice, we proactively reached out to an existing sponsor with a partnership plan, wrote a series of video scripts and responded quickly to brand feedback, mobilized our internal film crew in a flexible production schedule with overnight video editing, and transparently reported on our progress each step of the way. That's the kind of capability you can expect from TOP.

How does your marketing agency collaborate with other Washington, D.C. agencies?

We have also built a relationship as a great partner willing to work collaboratively with other agencies. We do this in three primary ways:  as lead agency, as an agency council member, and by doing fill-in work.  Regardless of our role, our team-oriented approach builds trust with our colleagues making us a flexible partner that can assume new and changing agency roles as circumstances change. You'll find us working hard all day alongside our D.C. agency partners and then grabbing some oysters at Pearl Dive or seeing a band or two at The Pocket after work.

How do you staff your Washington, D.C. marketing teams?

We manage human and technology resources to ensure the right resources and skill sets are staffed against each initiative. Our resource allocation and management process is a four-step system:  holistic brainstorming, task breakdown, resource alignment, and resource allocation.

Our D.C. teams work shoulder-to-shoulder to produce an end-to-end result that achieves epic success across all of our disciplinary boundaries.  As a unique, hybrid of local agency with global scale, we combine vertical integration with the ability to make rapid course corrections that simply less innovative agencies are simply incapable of doing.

How do you respond to emerging news stories and cultural trends Washington,D.C. and beyond?

D.C. is a news hounds dream city. The amount of movers and shakers moving and shaking within this "ten miles square" are operating in media that is spontaneous and ever changing. So of course this plays a significant role in our day-to-day approach.  Our in-house data analytics, creative, and social media teams constantly monitor real-time Google search data, Twitter hashtags, YouTube plays, and news headlines to identify trending conversations and map cross-channel insights. We create strategies based on the wireframe of our established marketing plan, always knowing that course corrections will be inevitable and sometimes even welcome. Our rapid, integrated setup means we can pivot with these changes for maximum effect.

Part of being on-trend is also getting inspiration from everywhere corner of the city.  Whether our team is catching a game together at Nats Park (World Champs, baby!), to grabbing some late-night nachos at El Rey after a show at 9:30 Club, or taking a run along the Tidal Basin, you'll find TOP team members constantly observing and synthesizing turning their personal time into fodder for great messages. We’ll post Slack messages to each other with something new we’ve just discovered that we can use in our work.

How do you onboard new Washington, D.C. marketing clients?

Our client work starts ideally with a 21-day onboarding plan that is custom-tailored to the each client.   Each onboarding plan is unique to each discipline that has been systematized over time.  But we also understand that each D.C. client has its own needs. We take stock of our client’s communication preferences and select the best tools from among our wide array of technologies to fit the client’s demands.  We’ll establish meeting schedules, a reporting cadence, and key role assignments.  Our goal is to be proactive and take the necessary action steps without you having to ask.

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