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Special Project

Special Project
From the 15th Annual Shorty Awards

Hodinkee Studio - “A Promaster’s Journal”

Entered in Branded Content, Branded Series


Hodinkee is the leading destination for all things watches and horology. The brand offers rich storytelling and beautiful content, an e-commerce platform as an authorized dealer of over 40+ brands to easily shop for every style and price point, and best-in-class services like Hodinkee Insurance and Pre-Owned. Hodinkee is building a better world of watches, and over the past 10+ years has amassed a massive, incredibly loyal community of watch lovers spanning hardcore collectors and novices alike.

Hodinkee Studio was created to leverage Hodinkee’s distinct expertise and help its brand partners tell compelling stories in front of a highly qualified audience. These performance-driven campaigns come to life through authoritative articles, arresting photography, cinematic video, or a combination of the three. Hodinkee Studio is a full-service content agency that oversees the entire creative process, ensuring the most elevated visual storytelling that a brand can convey. Hodinkee’s extremely attentive and interactive community of watch-lovers is attractive to advertisers that are interested in telling a story, boosting brand awareness to a whole new level.

For this specific campaign, Hodinkee was tasked by Citizen to create a compelling three-part video series that distilled their objective to showcase and elevate the functionality, durability, and design of their Promaster Collection on film. The film series took a look at this through a lens that was meant to embody the spirit of adventure that is synonymous with Citizen’s brand—in this case, in the air, on land or at sea.

Strategy and Execution

Hodinkee Studio utilized its group of exceptional storytellers by creating innovative and performance-driven solutions for its client, Citizen. Told through the unique Hodinkee lens, the brand’s Studio crafted exquisite and impactful bespoke content that has driven brand awareness for Citizen across the Hodinkee platform and social channels. 

Hodinkee began as a passion project, when founder Ben Clymer started a niche blog born from his genuine love for watches. People discovered Hodinkee and his voice as one that was markedly different from others in the industry that came before, making watches accessible and interesting to a diverse community. What started as a watch blog has grown into a multi-channel destination for people to easily access the world of watches and horology, including: print, digital and video content, an e-commerce platform, and best-in-class services. Now, the team is comprised of a diverse group of watch enthusiasts from different backgrounds and expertises, with experience working in auction houses, curating and buying watches, and watch making, leading to a wider breadth of content available from the brand.

Known widely as the the leading destination for all things watches and horology, Hodinkee already had in-depth knowledge of Citizen’s products, brand story, and mission, which other advertisers may not have been as privy to. The Hodinkee Studio team focused on taking the spirit of adventure that Citizen emanates and showing real thrill-seekers in action using the products.

The main challenge with advertising is focusing on telling a compelling narrative, rather than selling a product. Going back to Hodinkee’s knowledge, the team was already ingrained in the niche world of watches and knew how to elevate the branded content to go above and beyond traditional advertising.


This campaign was a huge success due to several contributing factors. First, the series was a visually beautiful display of Hodinkee’s most cinematic branded content to date. The three installments profiled fascinating subjects and showcased the Citizen Promaster Collection on film like never before, and fostered engagement with Hodinkee’s audience in a meaningful and captivating way. Hodinkee created a custom social content feature that profiled three fascinating individuals — including a test pilot, professional underwater and nature photographer, and professional climber — who perfectly embodied the ambitious spirit and fearless determination of a true Promaster. The campaign, titled “A Promaster’s Journal,” spotlighted the Citizen Promaster watch as the common thread through these three diverse stories. Hodinkee was able to follow those individuals on their next big quest in their respective professions, where they passionately spoke about their pursuit to push everyday boundaries and explore new heights, all while highlighting Citizen timepieces in six beautifully-shot videos. 

Second, the project came to life through a truly collaborative and seamless effort between the highly skilled Hodinkee and Citizen teams due to their investment in the campaign and brand story. The series overall outperformed other Hodinkee branded content pieces across all social channels, exceeding our branded content benchmarks. In some cases, the videos even outperformed Hodinkee editorial content. 

Some key metrics included:


Video for Hodinkee Studio - “A Promaster’s Journal”

Entrant Company / Organization Name

Hodinkee Studio


Entry Credits