We’re always interested in hearing from new people. Creatives, strategists, producers: please mail email@example.com and tell us about yourselves.
No need to sell hard, brag, or show up at our door in a chicken outfit. Just be you. You is good.
0. What is KesselsKramer?
KesselsKramer is a multidisciplinary communications agency based in Amsterdam, with offices in London and LA. We tell stories in whatever media suits a particular story best.
1. How long has KesselsKramer been around?
In advertising terms, a long time. The company is fully independent and has been since its inception in 1995.
2. What does KesselsKramer do?
We produce communications across all media. KesselsKramer has a wide ranging digital portfolio, as well as a very, very long history in television, print, and outdoor, from the national all the way up to a global level. But we’re not just interested in the big stuff: we’ve done everything from small-scale websites to stickers. In fact, KesselsKramer has created work in pretty much every form imaginable, including its own product range, do, and an interest in publishing, which led to its own range of photography books, works of fiction, design, and two business books.
3. Who are Kessels and Kramer?
KesselsKramer was started by Erik Kessels and Johan Kramer in 1995. From the beginning, the company took on industry conventions, including the decision not to employ Account Handlers and instead encourage direct contact between the people who make the work and clients.
4. Is KesselsKramer, Amsterdam, based in a church?
It is. Yes. The church is part of a former nunnery, now transformed into a gigantic playground for adults. There is a lifeguard tower in the middle of the office, and a wooden fort where the pews once stood.
5. What is KesselsKramer Publishing?
The publishing department of KesselsKramer produces books on photography, art, and some fiction. The creators of these books are staff members at KesselsKramer. You can visit the KesselsKramer Publishing website here.
6. When and why did KesselsKramer expand to London?
KK Outlet was opened in 2007, and its website can be seen here. KK Outlet is situated in London’s Hoxton Square, a spot famous for its creative atmosphere. This London branch extended the KesselsKramer multi-disciplinary approach by establishing a communications agency, a shop, and a gallery all under one roof. The creation of KK Outlet was motivated by a desire to service clients based in the United Kingdom (who often prefer a local London agency over one based in continental Europe).
7. What is KK Los Angeles?
The Los Angeles office of KesselsKramer opened in 2012. Rather than choose New York, a more obvious city for an advertising start-up, KesselsKramer headed for the West Coast. In L.A, branded content is easier to create with all the facilities provided by the film and other creative industries. With these resources, KesselsKramer felt it could meet the needs of modern brands more easily than in N.Y. You can see the KK Los Angeles site here.
8. Where can I find the latest work from KesselsKramer, Amsterdam?
9. Where’s the latest work from KK Outlet, London?
That would be here.
10. And where’s work from KK Los Angeles?
You can find its creative outpourings here.
11. I am a photographer/writer/creative. Will you publish my book?
Nope, sorry. KesselsKramer only publishes works created in house by its own people.
And, yes, that does feel a little incestuous, but its our only means keeping KesselsKramer Publishing manageable. See the KK Publishing catalogue here.
12. Why are you so keen on personal projects?
We feel they’re mini universities for our staff. They’re an opportunity to learn new skills and developing fresh means of thinking about business problems. Also, of course, a personal project motivates staff members by giving them freedom and control.
13. Why is there a dented statue of Lenin standing in your front office?
Because he’s the father of the revolution. Also, we like his beard.
14. What’s with the odd call waiting tapes?
Call waiting is a KesselsKramer tradition. Like many traditions, we’ve forgotten why we do it. But we do.
15. You used to have a fish. Where is that fish now?
Actually, we had multiple fishes. The most famous was called Elvis (“vis” being Dutch for “fish). Sadly, Elvis died. As did our other fish. The last fish perished in mysterious circumstances. We are conducting a full investigation.
16. How can I mail the person in charge?
The person in charge can be found at this address: firstname.lastname@example.org. However, she only communicates through weather patterns and augury. So you’d have to be druid to know what she’s talking about.
17. I find the new version of Dallas to be slighty less satisfying than the old Dallas, despite the fact that it’s better acted, directed and plotted? Why is this?
It’s not Dallas, it’s you. You were younger when old Dallas was on and still loved life. Now that you’re old, you feel sad more often, and are easily disappointed by TV remakes.
18. Where does your cleaning lady come from?
19. Were you pleased by the discovery of the Higgs Boson?
Were we ever! Yes, we had a party. Everyone came as their favourite quantum physicist. It was hilarious, until Niels Bohr had too much rum punch and started a fight with Max Born.
20. Where is your favourite collection of cat .gifs, like, ever?
21. How would you define love?
The revelation and acceptance of one another’s deepest vulnerabilities.
22. Would you like to see the lino in my new kitchen?
23. What’s your favourite quote from Friedrich Nietzsche?
“I rock the party, rock the party, you rock the party, rock the party, everybody get up on your feet.”
24. Does your company make hats?
Not so much. Our old website was more confusing even (possibly) than these FAQs. Part of it involved a fake hat micro site. An American gentleman thought we sold actual hats and tried to buy one. He was disappointed and amused when we explained who KesselsKramer actually was. Funny story.
25. Are there any clients you’d never work with?
Cigarette companies, toy companies, dictators, Chris De Burgh. Alright, maybe Chris De Burgh.
26. Is there a God?
Yes. No. Yes and no. Maybe.
27. Is it just me or is there a pensiveness about Jennifer Aniston even in her most wildly comic roles?
It’s just you.
28. Coffee or tea?
This depends on the time of day. Tea in the evening, coffee during the day. We wouldn’t suggest imbibing coffee after 8pm as it leads to sleep difficulties.
29. Why can’t anyone catch the mouse in KesselsKramer’s kitchen?
Many great minds have tried. We can only conclude that the mouse is a superior life form, both in terms of athleticism and guile.
30. Why all dem haters?
Usually, haters be hating as a result of an unconscious defence mechanism (a response, say, to what psychologists term “basic shame.”) More specifically, pathological displays of contempt toward others can be a sign of a Narcissistic Personality Disorder. Does that answer your question?
31. Why you got to be such a smartass?
Force of habit.
32. Where can I find exceptional burgers in the vicinity of KesselsKramer?
Head for Harry’s, and ask for the legendary Harry Burger.
33. Who let the dogs out?
This remains an enduring mystery.
34. Who would win in arm wrestle between Julius Caeser or Marcus Aurelius?
Aurelius, definitely. You seen that guy’s forearms? Sinewy bundles of prime beef, both of ‘em.
35. May I now kiss the bride?
36. Why is Louis CK the best comedian ever?
Because he is. He just is.
37. Finest hotel on the Beethovenstraat, Amsterdam?
CitizenM. And not just because they’re our client (Okay, maybe a little bit. But only a little).
38. If x is equal to z, and y remains equivalent to k, then what is xz to the power of 2?
Let Z be “1” and X be “6.” In which case, xz is 23. Obviously.
39. What is the secret of creativity?
40. What is the secret of world peace?
41. Should aging groups reform after a decades long hiatus just to pay the bills?
Yes, they absolutely should. But only if they’re the Stone Roses.
42. If KesselsKramer were a person, who would you be?
Not sure. But that person would be tall. The Dutch, after all, are the tallest people on Earth.
43. Is Dutch difficult to learn?
Somebody on the Internet said it was the third most difficult language to learn in the world. Which seems unlikely. Sure, Dutch is pretty tough, but it isn’t Finnish, or Hungarian (Don’t those guys have twenty seven tenses or something?) Guess it depends on where you come from: a Japanese person would probably find Dutch really difficult. And a German, not so much.
44. Are there any rap songs referencing Malcolm Gladwell?
Indeed there are: “10,000 Hours” by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis.
45. Can you make the logo bigger?
Yes, we can. But only if you insist.
46. Why does the notion of a unicorn come from?
A rhino, maybe. Or a freak horse with a spiky head.
47. Are Giant Pandas easy to defeat in battle?
Totally. But it helps if you know judo.
48. Has anyone from KesselsKramer every stayed at the Hans Brinker?
Yes, an American copywriter. He bunked at the Brinker for three months and reported that, “It’s not that bad. Though it’s not good either.”
49. Has anyone at KesselsKramer ever met 42nd President of the United States, William Jefferson Clinton?
50. What are people of KesselsKramer most afraid of?
Spiders. And Judas Priest doing a two-step album.
51. How many children do the people of KesselsKramer have?
At last count, six hundred and ninety seven. Give or take three hundred. Or more.
52. Why is there a flag on top of the fort in KesselsKramer, Amsterdam?
Because KesselsKramer, Amsterdam is in Amsterdam.
53. Will anyone ever read question fifty three?
54. How about question fifty four?
Even more unlikely?
55. Are these FAQs a waste of time?
From one perspective, yes. On another, you could argue that they comprise an existentialist statement on the absurdity of life. But if you were to argue that, you’d be wrong.
56. When is correct to use “that” instead of “which?”
Um, whatever it says here.
57. Who’s the funniest figure in early Twentieth Century anarchism?
Emma Goldman. No doubt.
58. Why are the Buddha’s earlobes so long?
We’ll ask him next time he’s round.
59. I get a lot of emails from Russian women explaining that they find me very attractive. What should I do?
Take a chance. Believe in love.
60. Why is one child legislation bad for China?
Glad you asked. In the longer term, the one child rule means that there won’t be enough able-bodied workers to support a disproportionately large aging population. Ironically, a law designed to preserve Chinese prosperity might have the exact opposite effect.
61. I have a tough time following Robert McKee’s theories on the craft of storytelling. What do you advise?
Probably best to absorb his ideas and then (as McKee says himself) discard them. McKee’s rules will be embedded somewhere in your subsconscious and should become apparent in your work. However, don’t try to follow each principle to the letter because it’ll most likely freeze you.
62. My spouse and I have trouble agreeing on our holiday destination for next year. What’s the best way to solve this?
63. Can’t well all get along?
In theory, we can. In practice, it’s hard.
64. Is anyone reading question sixty four?
See answer to question fifty three.
65. I find office politics stressful. How does KesselsKramer approach work conflicts?
A duel, normally. Survivor gets to keep his job.
66. Is the Internet just a phase?
Yep. Honestly, this time next week we’ll all be into something new, and everyone will be, like, “Internet? Was that like a type of Tamagotchi or whatever?”
67. Paris Hilton, eh?
Yeah, tell us about it.
68. In your experience, do people often talk about stuff they know nothing about, but don’t admit it because then they’d feel embarrassed?
69. I’m so tired. I’m just going to lie down in the snow and sleep. Just for a moment. Is this a good idea?
Only if you want to become the subject of a future archaeological exhibit.
70. What’s the best non-sweary swearword?
Followed by, “Oklahoma.”
Followed by, “Jings and cribbins.”
71. Which film most accurately represents Scotland at the start of the Twenty First Century?
72. If KesselsKramer were an HTML tag, which one would you be?
73. Do you ever get bored writing bizarre questions for this FAQ?
Less than expected.
74. I am possessed by the spirit Dionysus. Will you join me gambling through the glade with the fawns and the nymphs?
Only if we get a taxi back.
75. Did anyone notice that you wrote “gambling” when you meant “gambolling” in the last question?
Let’s hope not.
76. Furthermore, did anyone notice that you wrote “gamboling” but that the computer added an extra “l,” even though adding an extra “l” was unnecessary?
77. Because if the nymphs and fawns were “gambling” that would be pretty weird. Like, all these mythical beasts sitting around playing gin rummy, you know?
Yeah. Drop it.
78. I’ve heard yoga can be dangerous. Is this the case?
It can be, yes. Done in excess. For instance, if you were to spend a long time in any one asana, you risk doing yourself damage.
79. Read any good books recently?
Really liked John Kenney’s “Truth In Advertising.” Very sharp, very funny.
80. What’s the best way to go about studying animation?
Would suggest you check out movies from the Golden Age of Disney (the 1930s/1940s). It’s around this period that animators really got a grasp of the fundamentals of spacing, timing, anatomy, and drawing mass rather than outlines.
81. What’s the greatest one liner in an action flick ever?
Bad guy: “You think you’re pretty clever, don’t you?”
Carter: “Only comparatively.”
From Get Carter (the original version).
82. What number should I dial to get in touch with the emergency services in Amsterdam?
999. No, wait, that’s Britain. 192. Pretty sure it’s ‘192.’
83. Are we experiencing a revival of advertising’s craft skills?
Yes, it does look that way. Since the digital age began, copywriters have been doing a lot more copywriting, and Art Directors’ a lot more art direction (as opposed to coming up with a concept and then getting third party designers or directors to execute it).
84. Is there life after death?
Absolutely. Oh. Sorry. Thought you asked, “Do Ben and Jerry’s make the best ice cream?” Right. Um. Is there life after death? Nah. There’s only an endless void. And they make you pay for parking.
85. Zebra or Buffalo?
86. How many male employees of KesselsKramer have floppy hair?
87. Is life really too short?
No, but it goes very fast.
88. A horse goes into a bar. What does the barman say?
Um. “Why the long face?”
89. What’s a growth industry right now?
Energy. Particularly solar power.
90. The first time an electric car went by and you heard that strange electric motor whirring sound, did you think “wow, we’re really in the future now”?
Yeah, we did.
91. Glass half full or half empty?
92. Is there some kind of way out of here? (Said the joker to the thief).
First on your left, straight down the hall, follow the signs.
93. Can anyone at KesselsKramer speak Czech?
Indeed they can.
94. Who invented the ampersand?
Cicero’s slave, Tiro. What’s less well known is that he also invented Metacritic.
95. Is there life on Mars?
We’re guessing the affirmative. We’d also guess that it will crawl out from under a rock. Much like the cast of “Geordie Shore.”
96. I’ve got twenty bucks. Will KesselsKramer make me an advert?
Um. Er. How to put this politely? No.
97. Are you excited that the FAQs are almost finished?
98. What’s the last question and answer going to be?
Question: “Is that it?” And the answer: “ Yup.”
99. Why is the sky blue?
100. Is that it?