Exchanging words with UpHouse

Kiirsten May and Alex Varricchio, co-owners of UpHouse

UpHouse is working to improve the way in-house marketers do their job, by elevating in-house teams and the brands they promote…and they’re just as creative as their name suggests.

Kiirsten May and Alex Varricchio, the co-owners of UpHouse, met while working at a marketing agency and have worked together for the last five years. In September of 2017, they started their own marketing agency at 705-70 Arthur Street, in the historic Exchange District.

“Elevating in-house [marketing] is essentially it,” says Varricchio.

After gaining experience in the marketing industry, they began noticing more businesses moving their brand in-house and reducing their agency spend. With more and more communications channels out there, companies and organizations are building their own internal teams to cover them and using their agency budgets to do it.

May says that one side effect of only using in-house marketing is that you lose that outside perspective an agency partner can bring. When thinking about what kind of business they wanted to start, they decided they wanted to be the agency that rallies around in-house marketers and helps them elevate their creativity, quality of work, and their strategic thinking.

“There’s so much competition so you have to have a specialty,” May says. “Ours is coming up with workshops and frameworks to challenge in-house marketers’ thinking, help them get focused or look to completely different industries for inspiration.”

UpHouse has some offerings you would expect from a regular marketing agency, such as brand workshops, production services, digital, content and marketing strategy, but they also have a wide array of services centered around people.

“I think that’s kind of unique to what we’re doing at UpHouse,” May says.

“You’re in it every day and you’re working on your own brand and we see there’s an execution ceiling and a creative ceiling that people face,” says Varricchio. “We want to help them see past the mountains of work they have on their desk, and be able to innovate and create new ideas.”

Varricchio says the aim of UpHouse is to create products and services that really complement and help marketers build and strengthen their models, and help them get the most out of in-house marketing.

“We want to be an agency for marketers. We’re kind of a marketers’ agency versus a marketing agency,” Varricchio says.

When looking for the perfect space of their new business, they knew they wanted a shared and creative space.

“We really liked the idea of being in a space, not just the office itself, but in a community of creative people where we could leverage each other and brainstorm,” Varricchio says. “It’s just a great spot to be. We’re in the heart of the creative community.”

UpHouse is just starting out but they’re already raring to go and have already set goals for the near future.

“In the next year, we really want to make sure that we can be found and that we can start to get our new and different service offerings off the ground,” Varricchio says. “It’s nice to see those things come to life.”

Find out more information at