10 hot creative agencies to watch

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Above all else, getting serious about digital means getting serious about creative, whether you're talking about a simple banner ad or a cutting-edge viral campaign. After all, big ideas move successful campaigns in any medium, and the web is no exception.

But as larger agencies struggle to redefine themselves in the lean-and-mean digital ecosystem, a grassroots army of smaller, specialty shops is raising eyebrows. Some work on assignment from larger agencies, but others have begun taking ownership of the client relationship for themselves. While this is by no means an exhaustive list, these are some of the independent agencies that made us stand up and take notice with campaigns and ideas that push web creative forward.

Last Exit

Agency Details:
Based in New York and London, Last Exit splits its clients evenly between agencies like McCann and Dentsu, as well as directly with brands.

Something Cool:
There are a lot of campaigns that run on Facebook. Frankly, most of them miss the big idea of the platform, which is to add value to users, not distract from what people prefer to do on the site.

But Last Exit's work on the Canon "My Story" campaign illustrates what brands can do to enhance, rather than detract from, the user experience on social networks.

Through the power of a simple Facebook app, Last Exit helped Canon inject itself into an activity that is practically a Facebook pastime -- uploading, tagging and viewing photos.

Biggest Challenge Facing Digital Right Now?
"The most challenging thing about digital now is to keep existing and prospective clients off the track of following hype and pursuing cool for its own sake, and [instead] keeping them on the path of delivering long-term value," says Last Exit partner Nuri Djavit.

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