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Meet Ty James Largo of AWE Collective in Tempe

Today we’d like to introduce you to Ty James Largo.

Ty had entrepreneurial tendencies before he knew what that was. He couldn’t pick one career in college because liked a little bit of everything. So, when he couldn’t find that dream job, he made his own. Starting with a handful of clients and zero understanding of running a business, Ty was a staff of one. But Ty proved he was ahead of the game already by being first to market with a digital-first approach to everything he did, from traditional public and media relations to recognizing the importance of social media. Ty’s agency grew organically by word-of-mouth, and that word was “ROI.”

AWE Collective was born in recession, headed by a first-time business owner in a fairly new industry and an economically depressed landscape. Despite those challenges, AWE Collective quickly grew to half-dozen employees, and now employs a full dozen. AWE Collective’s work can be seen locally, regionally and nationally. AWE Collective stands out by being one of the only agencies in the region where a client can come in with an idea and the agency will take it from there, doing research, naming, branding, consulting on interiors, strategizing the launch, planning events, publicizing in traditional media, creating a social media cult following and customer loyalty programming, and seeing through ongoing marketing, including everything from text to email.AWE Collective has been around for 10 years already and assumes it’s going to need to build a bigger award shelf very soon.

Has it been a smooth road?
A smooth road is always a process, which means you aren’t starting with a smooth surface. In hindsight, it may seem obvious, but one big roadblock was not having a degree. But the agency’s work was good and they had a track record, so Ty wondered why it was such a concern for some. This hurdle proved to be both a business and emotional one for Ty. He moved past it and did impressive work, but the issue kept cropping up. Ty overcame this by learning how to shut that question down and focusing on his capabilities. To this day, Ty challenges anyone to put him up against a person with a degree, and he’ll put them to bed. He quickly proved himself in the industry and showed the “value” of a degree.

The recession also proved to be a challenge. It wasn’t necessarily a roadblock but made progress slower. At the time, small business loans and other helpful resources available today didn’t exist. But Ty worked hard to get and keep clients, and still has some of those clients today, including Chef Bernie Kantak, who has been Ty’s client for over 12 years.

We’d love to hear more about your business.
Forever revolutionary, never reactionary, AWE Collective carries the industry-leading scorecard to prove it. Our creative process jumpstarts with the insight, foresight, and exuberance other agencies struggle to manufacture. AWE transcends the conventional template: We are so much more than another Arizona-based public relation, branding, marketing, and social media firm. We are a nationally-reaching think tank of powerhouse problem solvers, bright-eyed creatives, and stubborn industry influencers with a pulse on what’s happening in your world. We execute thought-provoking, wide-reading PR and marketing campaigns, revenue targeted strategy, award-winning brand design, and plan events that re-write the textbook. It’s more than an edge, it’s an attitude, a spirit. It’s who we are.

Ty is most proud of AWE’s company culture. It’s definitely a secret in that he focuses on inward perception more than outward perception. We have colleagues from other agencies who walk through and are shocked by the obvious teamwork and cooperative culture. But this is always a work in progress, and AWE strives for not just sane, but happy employees. And this culture results in unmatched creative work. Plus, Ty gets to come to work every day with his friends.

Clients walk through AWE’s doors to be challenged and inspired. AWE Collective has the ideas that no other agency could come up with, period. At its core, AWE is a creative ideas shop. The logos, pr stunts, international social media campaigns — it all stems from the creative part of the brain that this hive mind has. Still, Ty has never seen this in any other agency.

Is our city a good place to do what you do?
Phoenix is the perfect place to start a business and especially a creative business like AWE Collective. With world-class talent and one of the nation’s fastest-growing start-up cultures, Phoenix is prime for developing and rearing emerging talent. As the communications chair for PHX Startup week, Ty gets the privilege of telling the story of the startup community in Phoenix, and it’s a great one to tell.

As for hosting a company like AWE Collective, it’s ideal. Phoenix strikes the perfect balance between feeling like a small town and acting as a launch pad for national and international brands. The pond is just small enough where making connections with others influencers and those in the industry is as simple as sending a direct message on Instagram, but it’s also big enough where it’s catching the eye of the rest of the country and even beyond. The rest of the US needs to keep an eye on Phoenix and start focussing on the immense talent we have incubating here.


  • Access to AWE’s superpowers range from $7500 to $50,000+, depending on scope of work, length of project and deliverables, but most importantly, how much the client wants to have that AWE moment.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Grace Stufkosky and Blake Bonillas

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