How we create value for our clients

Paul Crabtree Industrial, Professional Services, Technology

Even back in 2010 when the agency began, one lesson has been constant.  We see examples of it in our twice-yearly client feedback survey commissioned through an independent research firm, The Drum, so we know we’re on to something.  Particularly as benchmarking us against other agencies of our size has seen us continuously ranked in the upper echelons of UK-based agencies.

And the lesson is this: At Velo, creating value for our clients is essential.  As an agency, if you don’t create value, you get fired.  

We have some client relationships stretching back almost a decade, including huge multi-national companies and FTSE 100 engineering firms.  In this time, these businesses and our contacts within have changed to be hardly recognisable, but our approach has remained the same.

We’ve built a 4-step formula that we encourage our teams to always follow:

1.  Create value ….. through results

Ultimately, you live and die by the outcomes your expertise delivers, and you need to have the evidence to prove it.

That is not as simple as it sounds.  With integrated campaigns, proving the impact of individual elements is always hard. Likewise, videos influence brand perceptions and drive leads, but their traditional measures focus on engagement too.  Visual identity refreshes have organisational wide impact amplifying other good work and can never be evaluated in isolation.

But with these challenges, the fact remains that as a client’s agency, we must be able to show what impact and benefit we have provided for the investment made.

And how do we do it?  Through a combination of tactical tools, such as reporting awareness, engagement conversions via Google Data Studio, but most importantly by building relationships. This rapport positions us as a trusted partner so we are privy to the confidential metrics that are important to our clients and their organisation.

2.  ….through contextual relevance

To quote English poet John Donne, “No man is an island”.  True.  We all work with internal and external influences.  To do our best work, our team looks to ascertain the “why” not just the “what” and understand all the influences on a client.

Wider than activity briefs, this is the context in which our contacts are making decisions – their strategy, their organisation (and its politics), their market, their customers, their budget and their objectives (personal and professional).

When we understand this context we can make relevant recommendations that are practical and useful reinforcing our position as a trusted partner.

From day one, our approach to client service has been to make our client a hero.  And the only way you can do this is by understanding the landscape in which they operate.

  1.  …through how work is presented

As a creatively-led business, the work we produce can be very visual.  But this comes with drawbacks – it can be subjectively judged, or it can be shared without backstory and explanation of why it is right.

We pride ourselves on sharing our work in the right way so it stands on its own two feet in every way.  We use techniques such as proofing documents with annotations, control decks explaining the entire campaign proposed and presentations that are structured to provide the full story.

  1. …through chemistry

The expertise and service provided by Velo is people-driven and delivered by humans with their own personality. We encourage our team to share their personalities with their clients and build chemistry.

We encourage people to be themselves treating everyone internally and externally with courtesy, helpfulness and respect. It reinforces our agency culture and means our teams’ opinions are trusted in areas wider than the obvious brief.

Our working relationships are open, honest, equal and fun. After all, a meeting with your agency is something you should look forward to. We achieve this by working hard on ‘agency fit’ during recruitment. Expertise is important, but personality and attitude cannot be taught.

At Velo, the pursuit and delivery of value is relentless. It’s why we invest so much importance in our independent customer feedback through The Drum. Thank you to everyone over the years who has shared their opinions.

You are only as good as your last game, which is why these four steps are so important to us. Without creating value, you get fired as an agency.  It is really as simple as that.

Paul Crabtree

Paul Crabtree

Managing Director

An IDM-qualified senior sales and marketing professional who has held board positions in various marketing agencies since 2005. Although he claims not to look old enough, the emerging silver locks tell a different story. As MD, founder and owner of Velo, his role is to lead the agency maintaining our quality standards to be the level that means we continue to be built on recommendation. He has a particular focus on new business, overseeing all our client relationships and leading our strategy function to make sure that our team has the skills and capabilities that our clients need, so we continue always craft great work to be proud of. Find him on LinkedIn here.