Image Makers Advertising Inc.


When Tom Kaupp founded Image Makers Advertising Inc., he was six months out of college and was down to $76 in his checkbook.

Fortunately, his first  customer was well-connected, and word-of-mouth endorsements about his company began to spread quickly.

Image Makers made $4.8 million in sales last year as a full-service advertising agency.

Image Makers works with clients in four areas: public relations, creative services, media and video.

Image Makers has had complete in-house video capabilities for 15 years.

“We make about 200 television commercials a year,” Kaupp said. “We write them, shoot them, and edit them internally. Everything is done by our staff.”

One advantage to serving clients completely in-house is the ability to control costs, Kaupp said.

“We have fixed budgets for producing, so if it takes a couple extra hours editing a video, you don’t have to spend more money in production,” he said. “I’d rather spend that on ad space.”

Image Makers has a high customer retention rate due to a strong sense of partnership, Kaupp said. The company has served clients such as Kings Way Homes and the Law Firm of Cannon and Dunphy for more than 16 years.

One of the ways that Image Makers forms partnerships is that it will not work with a company in the same industry as one of its clients. So, Cannon and Dunphy is the only law firm that Image Makers does business with, Kaupp said.

“That’s something that’s been a really important part as to why clients have chosen us over recent years,” he said. “It forms a partnership of great trust. Our clients know that we are committed to them.”

Kaupp shows this commitment to his clients by being personally involved with every one of them.

“My true love of this business is to work with clients,” Kaupp said. “And they get that personal attention that they’re all looking for. I look at every client as if it were my own business.”

Image Makers Advertising Inc.

Address: 139 E. North Street, Waukesha
Industry: Full-service advertising
Revenues: $4.8 million
Employees: 14

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