Our name is inspired by the simplest element in the universe:
hydrogen. One proton, one electron, the lightest of all elements.
Yet also the most powerful—hydrogen powers the sun.
How do we make the complex look so simple? By working together to solve meaty marketing problems
that leverage paid, earned and owned platforms. Our arsenal includes:
Using Hydrogen’s 3Cs we dive deep into the category, customer and company. That leads to a key takeaway that is ownable, relevant and creatively differentiated.
The best ideas don't happen in a vacuum in space. We won’t disappear into a black hole and come back with the answer. Working sessions lead to better work and no nasty surprises.
We work with you to map out and deploy paid, earned and owned media channels along the path to purchase.
Today, we harness that power to help our roster of local, regional and international advertising clients succeed. How? By leveraging a proven yet simple three-step plan:
As our clients often tell us, we’re adults. Seasoned marketing pros simplifying your world every step of the way. It’s all of the good stuff you get with a big ad agency, without all of the overhead, baggage and layers.
After years as a writer and creative director in Dallas, Chicago and Seattle, what is Mary’s first word of advice to clients? Beware the sea of sameness. You know, those all-too-common, forgettable “me too” ideas that fail to capture people’s attention. Much less their hearts, minds and wallets. She is a firm believer in the power of simple emotional connections—be it laughter, empathy, wit or even heartstrings. The true test, she says, comes in understanding which emotion will best resonate with a brand. And delivering on that connection in an authentic, respectful way. She knows it’s not always the easy answer. But it is the answer for brands that want to truly strand out.
Like DiGiorno Pizza. Under Mary’s creative watch at FCB Chicago, DiGiorno passed the coveted billion-dollar sales mark. And the Tabasco® Brand Jalapeño Sauce launch she worked on while at DDB was so successful, the work had to be pulled due to a global jalapeño mash shortage.
Creatively, Mary’s work has been honored by Cannes, The One Show, Clio, D&AD, ADDYs and Effie. She has been featured in Communication Arts, ARCHIVE, Print, Best Spots, Creativity Pick of the Day, Adweek Creative All-Stars and The Wall Street Journal. In 2020, Mary received the Seattle American Advertising Federation chapter’s prestigious Silver Medal Award for her contribution to the Seattle advertising community. Her work for Group Health Cooperative (a Northwest closed healthcare system) was lauded in The Seattle Times two years in a row as one of Seattle’s favorite advertising campaigns by popular vote and was awarded in D&AD. Recently, Mary’s work was shortlisted in Communication Arts and won an Obie award for outdoor effectiveness.
Mary is often asked to speak at industry events and has served on several prestigious juries including The One Show, Communication Arts, Effie, The Mercury Awards and the National ADDYs. In addition, Mary is a member of the invitation-only International Women’s Forum, a global group of over 7,000 female leaders that includes artists, activists, business owners and sports figures.
She lives on an island in the Puget Sound with her family, which includes two kids (at college), three dogs and six or seven chickens at last count.
Michael has an eye for detail and visual language that pairs well with the sophisticated—with occasional notes of humor or heartstrings, but never even a hint of stuffy. He has worked on both coasts, beginning his career in New England, where he was raised and educated. After a few years, Michael journeyed across the country to Seattle, where he brought his visual sensibility to global giants like Boeing as well as local gems like Seattle Children’s.
After years on the agency side, Michael answered the siren’s call from Starbucks Coffee to lead their advertising group. While on the client side, he led creative for the Starbucks brand across Canada, among other initiatives. But when an opportunity to work on the Third Coast arose, Michael joined FCB Worldwide and subsequently survived five Chicago winters, leading creative for Sharpie, Valspar and SC Johnson. In 2014 he once again heeded the call of the Pacific Northwest to join Hydrogen as partner and creative director.
Michael’s work has been recognized by Cannes, D&AD, The One Show, The Art Directors Club and the ADDYs. He has been featured in Communication Arts, ARCHIVE and Print magazines.
He lives in the midst of a “never-ending” remodel, with his wife, two sons and a cardigan welsh corgi named Stella.
Chief Creative Officer
Hillary’s philosophy is that effective advertising happens when brands translate what they want to say into something consumers want to hear.
Over the past 25+ years, she has worked with brands large and small, global and local, interactive and integrated. Through that, she’s learned what it takes to distill the brand’s passion and promise into actionable messages that people want to engage with.
Before Hydrogen, Hillary worked at agencies such as BBDO, DDB and Wunderman on accounts like Chateau Ste. Michelle Winery & Estates, Holland America Line, Microsoft, T-Mobile, Amtrak Cascades and JanSport.
A sought-after speaker and instructor, she is a faculty member of the School of Visual Concepts in Seattle, where she teaches brand strategy and creative brief writing. Hillary attended the executive program in strategic marketing at Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management and received her management leadership training certification from the American Association of Advertising Agencies. She has spoken in Beijing, China, on strategic tools innovation and at an invitation-only technology summit in Athens, Greece. Recently, Hillary was a judge in the international Effie competition for advertising effectiveness.
When she’s not at work, she’s on the road—for fun. Hillary loves to travel and has been to all 50 states and their capitols. And all the Canadian Provinces and their capitols.
Chief Operating Officer
A strong supporter of creative work that delivers business results, Jason believes the best ideas come from focused strategies and collaboration. And that building strong relationships with clients, coworkers and partners is the key to collaboration; keeping the context of the other person front and center. Because when it comes down to it, everyone just wants to be understood–clients, colleagues, consumers and brands.
With over 24 years in agencies, Jason first cut his teeth in direct marketing, gaining valuable experience in consumer databases, customer lifecycles, print production and being detail oriented. He then moved on to traditional brand advertising, with a focus in outdoor lifestyle accounts. Later, he spent years on a wide array of B2C and B2B accounts—creating campaigns in integrated, digital, social and retail channels.
Jason has led both small and large cross-functional teams from three to thirty-plus for varying accounts. He’s had the privilege of working across a multitude of categories for clients such as T-Mobile, Microsoft, adidas, Seattle SuperSonics, Seattle Storm, Les Schwab Tires, the NBA, Autodesk, Red Lion Hotels, Widmer Brothers Brewing and a host of others.
A self-professed “bike nerd,” Jason owns what many would consider too many bikes. (Jason disagrees.) When he’s not at work, he’s likely cycling on the asphault, gravel roads, single-track trails, or attempting to race cyclocross.
Director of Account Management
Greg has spent more than 20 years immersed in the ever-changing world of advertising media. Armed with a media toolbox that both deep and wide, Greg has gone on to provide integrated solutions for BECU, Washington Department of Health, Avon Foundation, CLIF Bar, PEMCO Insurance and the Seattle Mariners.
Using brand strategy inputs as his roadmap, his philosophy is that the best Media Ideas are developed when media expertise works is in lockstep with messaging and audience insights. However, it doesn’t stop there. Flawless execution (and measurement) is often an underestimated, yet equally important, part of the media process. Special attention to details during the execution ensures that media buys remain on-strategy, and are surpassing KPIs.
As a native of Seattle, when Greg isn’t negotiating with media or buried in analytics, he’s spending his time outdoors. Fishing, camping, hiking or supporting his Washington Huskies (and jawing with Matt about the Apple Cup).
Don’t take our word for it. Check out our third party reviews on Clutch.coIndependent Global Network
Hydrogen is a member of Worldwide Partners, a global alliance of 70 independent advertising agencies in
40 countries. By sharing resources and ideas, we’re able to offer our clients the power of a large agency
network, without that large agency overhead.