December 8, 2022

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Discover The Difference

Why The Pandemic Was The Best Thing To Happen

Managing Marketing is a podcast hosted by TrinityP3 Founder and Global CEO, Darren Woolley. Each podcast is a conversation with a thought-leader, professional or practitioner of marketing and communications on the issues, insights and opportunities in the marketing management category. Ideal for marketers, advertisers, media and commercial communications professionals.

Ed Howley is the Creative partner at Melbourne’s full-service creative agency, By All Means. Like most advertising agencies, they were negatively impacted by the pandemic, particularly one of the smaller but vibrant independent agencies on the scene. But also because being based in Melbourne they had to weather the longest lockdown in the Western world. But even with this significant challenge, Ed and his business partners at By All Means managed to find many positives to come from the pandemic and the lockdown, which he shares here.

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Transcription:

Darren:

Welcome to Managing Marketing, a weekly podcast where we discuss the issues and opportunities facing marketing, media, and advertising with industry thought leaders and practitioners.

Today, I’m sitting down with Ed Howley, creative partner at By All Means, a Melbourne full-service creative agency that is determined to inspire. I actually love that. Welcome, Ed.

Ed:

Thank you. Thanks for having me.

Darren:

I love the “determined to inspire,” is a great sort of mission, isn’t it?

Ed:

Yeah. It plays nicely into our name, By All Means. When we named the agency, we wanted to imbue the business with a way of working and a point of view. And “determined to inspire” just plays off nicely with the spirit in which we do business. As you know, like every agency’s got to have a positioning, something unique in the market.

Darren:

So, how long ago did you start By All Means? Because what I do love about it is, it’s much more positive than “whatever it takes.”

Ed:

We are eight this month.

Darren:

Wow.

Ed:

Yes, although the last two years spent in lockdown in Melbourne, maybe we’re six.

Darren:

Well, look, I have to say the argument is if you last more than two years with a new business, you’re doing well. To last eight years, having gone through the two years of a pandemic, you’re doing very well.

Ed:

Yeah. I mean, it was a moment to celebrate when we passed those statistically scary milestones. Year one is one and then year five is another that other businesses fail. So, yeah, we’re really proud of what we’ve managed to build and achieve in the time despite spending the last two years locked in our houses, working on our kitchen tables with our partners and kids.

Darren:

Well, it is a time I think that’ll go down in history.

Ed:

It will.

Darren:

When any small to medium business owner was certainly flying by the seat of their pants. I know from our own perspective and that’s with having businesses, but small business. I say TrinityP3 is a micro multinational, because globally, we’re less than 50 people, but we’re in every continent except Antarctica and Africa.

But on that basis, it’s been really challenging. And I’m sure for you guys, it’s been a challenge too. What was probably the biggest challenge that you faced at the very beginning, back in early 2020?

Ed:

I think at the very beginning, the biggest challenge was if we think about the fact that JobKeeper hadn’t been announced and there were no government grants that had been announced, we were in that awkward, what’s going to happen phase?

And I think for us as small business owners, it was very much about how do we keep our staff, how do we stay afloat? How long do we have to stay afloat for? We’ve got a kitty of money in the business, how long does that need to last? What overheads can we scrap right away to try and make that last so that we can keep all of our people?

Darren:

And of course, the uncertainty was that clients were feeling the same way. You know, they were sitting there going, “Oh, hell, what’s going to happen next?” And their natural reaction, I’m sure you experienced this, was, well, we better shut up shop for a little while until we know what’s happening.

Ed:

Absolutely. And I think that definitely impacted how we were feeling as business owners. We had one client who on the day a pretty substantial invoice was due to be paid, call to say “I’m sorry, we can’t pay it.”

So, you throw things like that into the mix on top of all of the other stress and unknown factors. And yeah, it was a pretty scary time to be a business owner and stressful for sure.

Darren:

And then because you’re also based in Melbourne and Victoria has the dubious honor of being the city that had the longest period of lockdown during the pandemic.

Ed:

Yeah, that’s right. And so, we were fortunate in that we were already set up on the Google ecosystem and Slack and things like that. So, we were relatively, our pivot to work from home was pretty painless.

But that said, lockdowns weren’t good for business. As you’ve already identified, uncertainty isn’t good for us as a creative business because clients can just run old assets, pull the plug or pause things.

We had some clients that their marketing teams had been pulled onto other focuses in the business, not marketing, and the marketing function was sort of reduced. So, it wasn’t easy being in the most lockdown city in the world, but we sort of just had to make it work.

Darren:

Because the other problem is of course, managing people. I mean, apart from managing yourselves, how many partners are there at By All Means?

Ed:

I’ve got two business partners.

Darren:

So, the three of you?

Ed:

Yeah. Toby Cumings and Mat Cummings, I’m in a family business, they’re brothers — and myself. And then we have a team of about four or five others, as well as the usual freelancers and contractors.

Darren:

So, did that mean that apart from keeping yourself sane, you also needed to focus on the rest of the team?

Ed:

Yeah, absolutely. And that’s a job unto itself as I’m sure any person in agency management would attest to. There’s only so many cooking classes or Zoom drinks that you can have, organized fun, before it starts getting a bit tired.

You know, if you think back to the first year of the pandemic, there was still a novelty there of doing things on Zoom, whether it was a dinner party or whatever. And so, the things that we organised keep culture and keep morale high. To try and stretch that out over the two-year period, it became really challenging. Because after a while, everyone’s was just like, “Oh, I’ve had enough of being on Zoom. I’d rather not.”

Darren:

Well, I remember an agency that I wanted to contact them. They said, “Oh, you can’t contact us between 12 and 1.” I said, “What’s that?” “Oh, we have trivial pursuit between 12 and 1.” And it’s every day, and they had about 80 or 90 staff. And I’m going, “How do you play trivial pursuit with 80 or 90 people on Zoom?”

I mean, for me, it’s bad enough having the sort of The Brady Bunch look on the Zoom screen without, having that big, long list of all the other people that you can’t see.

Ed:

Totally, yeah.

Darren:

But that was their thing to do. Don’t you find though, Ed, that in many ways, the advertising industry doesn’t really do a lot for training you or giving you the experience of managing a business like that, managing people and things like that.

Because of your background, you’ve got experience in big multinational agencies and some independent agencies and things like that, but it’s really part of the conversation, isn’t it?

Ed:

Yeah, I definitely agree with that. I think certainly in the creative department, there are probably two types of creative people. There’s the creative person who is really happy to just work in the creative department on creative briefs and not really think too much about how the ecosystem of advertising and marketing works.

And then I think I probably fall into the other camp – I’ve always been really interested in the business of advertising as much as I am a creative person. And I’ve always sort of had a bit of an entrepreneurial streak. So, starting my own agency was always something I wanted to do.

And I guess, to get back to your question about whether you are prepared to manage a team of that scale — probably not. I think a lot of it just comes naturally, whether you’re sort of wired that way or not. Whether you’ve got empathy, whether you can put yourselves in other people’s shoes: your staff or your team’s shoes, and think about how they’re feeling in relation to the task that you’re asking them to do under the circumstances that we were in.

So we spent a lot of time trying to protect our team from the stresses that we were feeling and tried to make the creative part of their job as fun as it could be.

And I think it’s pretty amazing — there are a lot of negatives about COVID, but there were a lot of positives.

I think one of the things that we found is it really gave us a chance to sharpen our creativity because we were under such a huge amount of restrictions. Couldn’t shoot anything, couldn’t really leave your house at some stages to do anything other than exercise.

So, it became a task of how creative could we get? What’s the best possible creative solution to this brief when you’re under all of these government restrictions?

Darren:

Well, I’m glad you said that because it’s great to see that you can see some positives because a lot of people have done nothing but talk about the negatives.

Ed:

Yeah. Well, I like to think that we’re in the business of problem-solving. And if you dwell too much on the negative, then you’re just going to get a negative result. Whereas, I think we made the decision early on despite being really quiet, like a lot of our clients in the first year, particularly, just turned the tap off and our business kept alive by JobKeeper to be honest. So we decided early on that we wanted to still generate great creative ideas even if we had to come up with who they were for … For example we started an initiative to help Melbourne’s pubs because they were sort of left behind.

Darren:

Of course. Yeah, I mean, during lockdown, no one’s going anywhere, are they? Particularly, not out for a beer.

Ed:

But the challenge really was, that every restaurant in town suddenly was on Uber Eats and Deliveroo. So, people at home had a bevy of options from top restaurants all around Melbourne, but you never really think about getting takeaway from your pub.

So, we created an initiative called Counter COVID where we encouraged people to order a counter meal to support their local. And we got a beer company, Moon Dog on board, and that would give every person who ordered a counter meal a tinny of Moon Dog to go with it.

I think we had about 30 participating pubs in the end. We gave away a lot of beer and got on the news and stuff like that.

Darren:

So, this was proactive, Ed?

Ed:

Yes.

Darren:

You were sitting there, going “Well, thank you government for the JobKeeper. We’re here, so what problems can we solve?”

Ed:

Yeah, that’s right.

Darren:

So, where did the idea come up for helping pubs? Because I love the idea of ordering a parmer … I wish I had thought of it during lockdown, but I didn’t.

Ed:

Well, the genesis of the idea came from a friend of ours who owns a pub and we could see how much he was struggling. And I think we just thought this is something that we can contribute to and we can help him. We can help his business.

And once we had the idea, we quickly realized, well, hang on a minute, we could make this much bigger than just Guy’s pub, it could be as many pubs as we can get in Melbourne, which was a challenge in itself,navigating a bunch of pub owners. I had one meeting where I had about 20 different pub owners all wanting different things. It was a real learning in stakeholder management.

But that’s the beauty I think of doing proactive jobs like that, is that everyone in the agency gets their hands dirty and does things that they don’t normally necessarily do when they’re working on a client-engaged project.

So, everything from managing the social channels ourselves to stakeholder managing 30 pub owners and going out and getting sponsorship and all that sort of stuff, I think it’s really good for everyone in the agency to sort of every now and then, get in there and help and do that stuff.

Darren:

And Ed, what about the actual logistics of producing stuff as well? Because one, is coming up with the brief, but I imagine when you’re in a world where you can’t go and organize a shoot or it’s more difficult to do a recording or whatever it is — how did you navigate that?

Ed:

Yeah, I mean, it was different in every lockdown and the rules were constantly changing and it was a constant challenge. And often, we would have to pick our moment to get out there and get stuff before restrictions changed again.

But I mean, a really good example of that was in one of the stage four lockdowns. So, the really strict sort of one where you could really only leave your house for an hour to exercise. One of our clients is a family-run pizza chain, and we realised that delivery people were allowed to move around and do whatever because they had worker permits.

Darren:

Yeah, they were essential service.

Ed:

Yeah, that’s right. And so, we came up with this idea, we’re like, well, what could we do with that? You know, if we’ve got these delivery drivers, they’re the only people that can move around, what could we do that helps Bubba Pizza?

And we had this idea which is going to sound insane, but we strapped an iPad to a delivery driver’s face so that someone could send their friend a pizza. And then when the delivery driver was at the door, your face would be on the delivery driver’s face via facetime, and he would hand you the pizza.

Darren:

So, it was coming from your friend rather than just the delivery driver.

Ed:

Yeah, and you could have a nice little moment as you received this gift from your friend. And we ended up getting on the Morning Show at the time, and it’s that sort of stuff that really excites me about when creative people are faced with immense challenges and restrictions, there’s always a clever solution to be had somewhere.

Darren:

So, what’s the lesson that you’ve taken out of that because now that clients have come back and briefs are coming through, is that … you called it sharpening your creativity. Has that had an ongoing effect with the approach that you take when a client walks in with a brief? What’s the thought process that’s probably sharper now than it was before?

Ed:

I think it just gives us the confidence to know that we can navigate obstacles. And we called the agency By All Means for a reason, it’s got that spirit in its DNA. But having done it for ourselves, for our own projects, then allows us to go and do it for clients with confidence, and go, “Well, what about that time we did that or let’s do that again for this client.” And it just proves that anything is really possible with the right idea despite immense challenges.

Darren:

That you can make it happen and particularly, I guess, because you were backing your own ideas.

Ed:

That’s right. We wanted to make it work. And I’ve worked in agencies before where creative people have gone, “Ah, we need at least 300 grand to make this idea work. Like can’t do it for anything less than 300 and throw the brief away.”

And that never really sat that well with me, because to me, I get just as excited about a much lower budget idea than 300 grand, than I do a big budget idea, because there’s something fun in trying to solve that riddle.

Darren:

It’s interesting you say that Ed, because one of the things that we often hear from clients when they’ve phoned up and said, “Ah, we want to find a new agency.” And one of the things that they really get frustrated with is that they feel like every brief goes to television and every television idea has to have a 300 plus thousand dollars price tag which they don’t necessarily have. Or if they do have, they’re not a hundred percent convinced that that was the best way to invest their money.

Ed:

Yeah, I can imagine. I mean, you’re a creative person originally as well.

Darren:

Was, was-

Ed:

I mean, you understand the process of making film is like the most fun you can have in our business. And so, it doesn’t surprise me that you hear that because creative people, I think naturally go, “Ah I’d love to go and shoot something and make this beautiful piece of film.”

But I think the reality is more and more, particularly, with social and all that sort of stuff, is those budgets are getting smaller and TV isn’t necessarily always right. And it’s now, more than ever that really clever creative thinking outside of the box of TV, is where people should be looking, I think. Because yeah, as you say, a lot of clients can’t afford TV. And I mean, I haven’t had my TV plugged into an aerial for 5 to 10 years, so-

Darren:

You’re streaming everything, are you?

Ed:

Yeah, yeah, pretty much.

Darren:

Now, the other thing we noticed, TrinityP3, was that during the pandemic, clients that were perhaps traditionally inclined to go for big network agencies or big established agencies, were a lot more open to engaging with the smaller, but particularly, the independent, creative, hot shops.

This idea of playing it safe with the big agency had given way to not risk-taking, but they wanted something and to work with someone that was willing to push it further. Did that have any rub off on your business? Did you find that suddenly, you were probably playing in a client mix that wasn’t traditional for you?

Ed:

Yeah, I mean, I think the COVID definitely helped because the one thing it did do, was it sort of leveled the playing field. A big agency’s wheelbarrow full of awards in reception and a big shiny reception desk don’t matter anymore because everyone’s just on Zoom with their own ticky little background at home in their kitchen or bedroom or whatever they’re lucky enough to have.

And so, I think it really helped us as a business because none of that stuff mattered. I mean, we have a nice office, but it’s not very big and we don’t have a huge boardroom. It’s probably the same as size as this. And I think it all too often, clients can get the stars in their eyes, and walk into a big multinational and get lost in the gloss of it all when really, having a wild card in the mix, I would say, an indie creative agency, why not?

And COVID definitely, I think, accelerated that point of view that I think people were more open to try a different type of agency. And there was a lot of opportunity flying around because there was a lot of change happening. Everyone was probably reassessing their budgets, reassessing their partnerships, whether they were right for this new way of working. So, it felt like there was a bit of movement.

Darren:

Yeah, I think it was also, as you said, in the world of Zoom teams and Google Meets, that access was a lot easier, in that you didn’t have to go to the agency. Basically, the agency appeared on your screen. And it’s interesting what you say about the backgrounds because I think it was sometimes the smaller independent agencies were smarter in that they’d create a team look. They’d have a common shared virtual background.

Whereas, you’d often go into a Zoom meeting with one of the big agencies and you’d be looking into someone’s bedroom, someone’s kitchen. It didn’t seem to be as professional. In some ways, we were all in the same boat.

Ed:

That’s right. So, what mattered at the end of the day, and this is probably the point that I wasn’t making properly before, was it was just all about the idea and the quality of the idea or the quality of the pitch.

Darren:

And the people.

Ed:

And the people, yeah. The people behind the idea or the pitch. The other stuff, the boardroom, the reception, the hot coffee, all of that stuff-

Darren:

Was the packaging.

Ed:

Didn’t matter anymore. And so, I think that was a really exciting time because all of a sudden, it was just about the quality of thinking. The playing field was leveled.

Darren:

There was also a feeling that, especially in the first sort of six months, that we talked about it earlier; the uncertainty — that a lot of marketers felt quite a big difference between contacting the big network agency with the head office on the other side of the world, and asking because they’re all in trouble, and asking for help.

And the response was, “Yeah, yeah, we’d love to help you. We’re just going to check it and make sure we can.” Whereas when you’re dealing with a local independent, like you guys, the three partners are right there on the other end of that call, ready to make a decision based on helping the client, but also your business capabilities as well.

Ed:

Yeah, I mean, it’s like eating in a restaurant. If you’re eating in a chain franchise and you’ve got a problem with your meal, you only get to speak to the manager who’s employed by someone else and doesn’t have direct contact to the owners… what kind of response are you going to get?

But if you are having a nice meal in a restaurant and the owner is right there and you can call him over and say, “Hey, I’ve got this problem” or whatever it is, you’re going to get a much better service. And that’s really what you get from an indie agency.

You know, we had one client in particular who came to us and say “Guys, at the moment, I just can’t afford what you’re charging”… It was particular to the way that his business and his marketing fund worked, because it was affected by the lockdowns.

And between the four of us, we managed to come to an arrangement where we gave him temporary relief. And I think that in the long term, will go a long way for our relationship. It’s already a long-term relationship, but I think everyone will remember those moments where-

Darren:

I hope you were talking to the business owner and not just the marketing person that could change jobs in three months’ time.

Ed:

He was. No, no, he’s the business owner, definitely.

Darren:

Yeah. And that’s the point; you can make business decisions. You’ve made a decision to invest in that relationship. It’s interesting because one of the observations that we made quite a while ago was back in 2007 when you were a wee lad, but a lot of clients got hit by global recession and their budgets got cut, but they needed to do the same amount of work for less.

And a lot of agencies just immediately said, we’ll do all the work that you want for that lesser amount: 30, 40% less, thinking that it would be reciprocated. That when things got better, that the money would come back. But what they hadn’t allowed for is one, the short-term memory of clients or tenure of marketers, and the rise of procurement who said, “Well, if you could do it 30% less, why can’t you always do it 30% less?”

Ed:

Yeah.

Darren:

You know, and I think that’s one of the things, as a business decision, you need to take into consideration; will this be an investment in the relationship that’ll pay off or not?

Ed:

Yes. And I think that the great thing about being a creative person who owns a business or who owns an agency is also being able to look at that client and go “Is the work that we’re doing for this client vital to us getting more work? Is the work worth investing in? And in this case, it was.

Darren:

So, it’s not just financial, it’s the opportunity that it presents to do great work because that’s how you’ll get more clients?

Ed:

That’s right.

Darren:

But also, to deepen and extend the relationship so that we could talk about lifetime value of clients as a concept as well.

What do you think was the biggest opportunity? Because I know you’ve made a few changes to your business during the pandemic that’s brought you out the other side in quite good shape.

Ed:

Yeah. Look, I mean you would understand running a business for a long time, there’s a risk you end up running the business on autopilot. In our case we get so busy working on client briefs and things like that in the business, it’s hard to find time to actually work on the business.

And I think one thing COVID afforded us was the opportunity to sit down and go, “Hey guys, we’re going to emerge from this at some point, lockdown’s going to end, the clients are going to come back, we’re going to get busy again. Let’s just assume that’s a certainty. What do we want to change about our business?”

So, it was almost a really amazing opportunity to kind of re-look at everything with the same rigor that we look at clients’ businesses and go, “What could be better about how we operate?” And one of the things was the office finding a better space that suited our needs better and that’s sort of a cosmetic thing, really.

But we’re also sort of rebranding at the moment, updating our logo, all of our collateral, all of our templates and all that sort of stuff. And it sounds like a small thing, but it’s good to draw a line in the sand after coming out of something like COVID and come out reborn – we’ve got a new sense of positivity and a new sense of how we do business moving forward. We put all that behind us and now, we’re going to be a better agency for it because of the challenges that we’ve had to overcome.

Because I think when your back’s against the wall and you’ve taken a few hits, that really wakes you up, and I think that’s when you really start to think hard about this stuff… It’s a bit like starting the business all over again, really. And you get to ask “what do we want to change?”

There are things that are in the works at By All Means that will, I think, set us onto a new, exciting chapter.

Darren:

And do you think some of that’s been driven by probably a deeper appreciation of what you’ve actually created, and its ability to survive like a once in a lifetime catastrophe, like a global pandemic?

Ed:

Yeah, I do. I mean, I think us doing the initiatives, our sort of proactive initiatives throughout lockdowns, which the third one that we did was to commemorate Melbourne becoming the most lockdown city in the world. We created these t-shirts with Oslo Davis and the design had Flinders Street Station overgrown with vines. And it said “greetings from lock town” on the front and on the back, had all of the lock down dates written like a band tour t-shirt.

Darren:

Tour dates.

Ed:

And that was a proactive project that then we attached Beyond Blue too. Every ounce of profit from those t-shirts went to Beyond Blue to support mental health services, which were very much needed in Melbourne and Victoria at the time. And we ended up selling over a hundred thousand dollars’ worth of stock in three or four weeks.

So, that was equated to almost $50,000 to Beyond Blue. And I think once we’ve done things like that and shown that we can creatively prosper under these crazy circumstances, you suddenly really believe in the product again. And our product is creativity, and it’s easy to sort of forget how important and how powerful creativity is as our product and what we do.

And I think moving forward, we do that with renewed confidence in us as creative people, as creative practitioners. And I think that having that work already has generated work for us. We had a client that we hadn’t heard from in ages see the t-shirts and go, “Hey, that’s awesome. Can you do something like that for us?”

And we had another client see something else we did, and say “That’s awesome. You were off my radar, but now, you’re back on.” So, I think doing that stuff really, I think helped set us up for this next sort of chapter.

Darren:

So, you’ve been marketing By All Means by giving back to the community or solving problems proactively.

Ed:

Yeah, I guess so.

Darren:

Because it’s interesting, you haven’t mentioned the purpose word once and yet, it’s clear to me that there’s definitely a purpose. One was you’re determined to inspire, but as you said, that comes from the name. But there does seem to be an underlying purpose that obviously resides with the three founders.

Ed:

Yeah. Look, I think-

Darren:

Have you ever articulated that?

Ed:

I think for us, it comes down to the fact that as a business, our goal isn’t to grow and sell. We just want to build a highly creative agency that’s big enough to service the clients that we want to work with. And so, for us, the decision to take on a charity project, a pro bono thing, or a proactive thing, we see as a culture building exercise in celebrating our creativity and not as like, “Oh, we’re sinking all this money into this thing, what’s the return?”

And that’s to me been the really exciting thing about starting my own agency. It’s being able to make those calls and make those decisions. We’ve always made a commitment to do at least one truly proactive or pro bono thing for the community a year.

I think it just comes naturally to us because we like to be part of the community, and the connections and the people that you meet, even in the media, through doing those projects just help you later on, on client projects.

Darren:

Yeah. You’ve shared with us today, how the business has changed and the benefits in many ways of the pandemic. What’s it done for you personally and professionally? From the creative person and the business person you were two or three years ago, to who you are today, what do you think have been the biggest transformations or lessons for you?

Ed:

I think personally, I have gained a lot of confidence in managing to survive this crazy thing. You know, I think it would’ve been easy at the start of this to really freak out and make some horrible decisions. And luckily, we have really good people around us that we can call on for advice and support and help make sure that we’re on the right path with things.

But I think personally coming out of COVID, it’s with a renewed confidence in us as an agency and our abilities. And for me, it’s doing things like this. We’ve never been an agency that really PR-ed themselves very much. We’re always too busy doing the work. And recently, someone said to me “Flying under the radar is not a good business model.”

And for us, I think we don’t really enter awards, we just do our thing over there. And for a long time, that has sort of worked well for us. But I think coming out of COVID, we’ve realized that we need to shift things up. And so, this is a classic example, I think. Coming and talking to you about our business wouldn’t have been something I probably would’ve agreed to do pre-COVID.

Darren:

Yeah. Well, I’m glad you did. I’m glad that the pandemic happened and helped you get some confidence, because whoever said flying under the radar is a bad strategy, so many agencies say to me, “Why is it that everyone’s talking about Thinkerbell and The Monkeys and Special Group?” And I go, “I don’t know, they seem to be in the trade media all the time.”

Special Group’s opened in London and Thinkerbell’s done another campaign. I don’t know why as an industry that’s all about communication we really struggle with understanding how to communicate the work that we do. And more importantly, the value that you deliver to your clients.

Ed:

Yeah.

Darren:

It’s bizarre.

Ed:

Yeah. Look, I mean, it’s probably a topic for a longer conversation. But I think being a creative person, you can get gun-shy with publications, like Campaign Brief where you have your work stripped to shreds by anonymous comments. And I think that does affect us.  When we started the agency we chose not to PR because we thought, “What are people going to say?”

Darren:

Well, it depends where you PR.

Ed:

That’s right.

Darren:

You know, I think Campaign Brief is one of those fabulous echo chambers where sad, pathetic trolls sit there, tearing shreds off everyone else because they’re doing better work than the troll can do.

Ed:

And I like to think that it’s only really four people doing it. It looks like a lot of people, but maybe it’s only three or four of the same people every time. I hope that’s true.

Darren:

But in actual fact, your agency grows because there’s people out there with business problems or marketers wanting creative solutions. And the only way they’re going to find out about that is either word of mouth or they hear or read about you. So, I think your strategy is a good one. Keep it up.

Ed:

Thank you Darren.

Darren:

Look, Ed, we’ve run out of time. It goes so quickly.

Ed:

It does.

Darren:

Having these conversations. I really appreciate you … well, you are in Sydney, but thank you for popping by and having this chat.

Ed:

Anytime. Thanks for having me in.

Darren:

And before you go, because obviously, there’s quite a few pitches going on at the moment. What would be your ideal client?

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